Mounting Concerns/Bonding Behavior

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Aproposrelic

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I just recently purchased a male and female holland lop 6 days ago, both from the same littler they are about 10 or 11 weeks old. Iv noticed almost right away after bringing them home the male has been peeing on and trying to constantly mount and hump the female, she does not seem to enjoy this and runs away for the most part. I do have them in separate cages but let them out together supervised so they can bond, play and have fun. I just stop him from humping her when I see behavior begin to occur at this point, which is almost every time I let them out together. He will begin to Honking and chasing her around until he gets his hump in. Iv done a fair amount of research being curious.. enough to know what this most likely means. I have already called and scheduled a visit with my vet when I got them and discussing having them both neutered but must wait as they are both too young for that at this time from what the vet told me. I'm new to this and honestly just need advice until I can get them both neutered, should I be letting them out to play together even though he just wants to mount most of the time? Am I right in stopping him from humping her? I want him to hump a toy or anything else but he only seems into her. Iv been putting stuffed animals in his cage but he does not seeming to be interested in anything other then her. Would it help if I kept there cages in separate rooms? Would that help keep his mind off her, because as of right now they live in the same room just separate. I am also curious if I allow him no ability to mount her will he eventually get so frustrated he will just begin to mount any toy I leave around him or become aggressive towards her and just reject the toys regardless? Any advice would be apricated.
 

Preitler

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What they are doing is not playing, bonding and having fun, it's more like dangling a carrot in front of his nose and pulling it away again. In my opinion by giving them "playtime" you are more engraining a behaviour than helping. Also, to me it sounds like they are somewhat older than you think they are and you're running a serious risk of pregnancy already. Over here he wouldn't be considered to be too young to be neutered, puberty is way underway full speed already, or he's even mostly through now.

Same room, so that they can see each other, cages side by side imho is perfectly ok, rabbits are social animals and having other rabbits around is good. he is not going to become aggressive towards her.
Only few rabbits use toys, mostly ones that are completly alone I think.
 

JBun

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It would be best to just keep them separated until both are fixed and he's had at least 4 weeks post neuter for the hormones to fade before you attempt to truly bond them. At most it would only be safe to continue to let them be together for another week. Past 12 weeks old you're risking her becoming pregnant, and at such a young this could be risky for her. Plus not really any point in letting them 'play' since he just chases her and she doesn't like it.

Whether or not you keep them in the same room depends on if it's creating any problems, like it upsetting her to have him next door, or him not settling down and eating, etc, because he's so distracted and frustrated having her near but not being able to be with her. Though separating into different rooms, you also have to take into account if that will be upsetting to them to be isolated from each other, enough that they stop eating.

So it all depends on their reactions to being next door to each other, and how they would respond to being isolated from each other. Though if you do keep them in the same room but separated with a barrier, just make sure there is either a solid barrier between them that he can't reach her through, or a gap between their fencing panels, as it is possible for male rabbits to mate through fencing bars. Also make sure he can't jump over to her area.


 

Aproposrelic

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I very must do appreciate this advice, this is going to be a big help for me going forward for the next few weeks with them and also overall seems very straight forward. I just wanted to be sure I was making good choices for preventing unwanted pregnancy and keeping them happy and comfortable at the same time.
 

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