Newly bonded rabbits excessively humping

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Tms

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Hi,

mid august I adopted a beautiful new lion Holland cross to bond with my Holland lop.

she had only just been fixed so I had to wait until 24th August before starting the bonding process but started the scent swapping etc during that time.

Fast forward to last Saturday (11th September) after 4-5 successful bonding sessions being in a neutral space outside I decided to keep the session going for as long as possible.

As my current rabbit is free range and we would also be having the bonded pair as free range I cleaned out the room that he spent the most time in, the room with his litterbox etc. I scrubbed stains off the carpet and also cleaned it with shack and vac, I wiped down all surfaces that could have had his scent and also completely cleaned both the rabbits litterboxes. I then placed both of them in the room and continued the bonding session, camped in the room overnight and no aggressiveness was shown and they was all okay.

now fast forward to today/this week they have been getting along well, sleep cuddled up sometimes, play together, eat together etc all the good signs of a nice bond. However, the male rabbit (old rabbit) has been excessively humping (and sometimes with some chasing and nipping) the female rabbit.

both the rabbits are fixed and it has been over a month since the new rabbit has been fixed she is young however at only around 10 months my old rabbit is 3 years. so I was just wondering if anyone has any advice on what I should do regarding this humping. I have been allowing him to hump her (she really doesn’t care) but after the first few times I will push him off of her and not allow him to chase.

I am scared that she will eventually get fed up and a fight follow - destroying their bond :(

any advice on what you would do in this situation would be grateful.

Thanks,
Tony
 

bright_eyes

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Hi Tony,

There are a couple approaches I would consider for this issue. While I do not consider myself a bonding a expert, I've successfully bonded several pairs and these opinions are based off my own experiences.

1) You can let them work it out (under supervision until you're confident they're not going to kill each other). This opinion will be unpopular, but sometimes a more hands off approach can work.

All relationships in all species have boundaries. Either your boy will tire himself out, or your girl will let him know that she won't tolerate his behavior. This happened to my most recent pairing consisting of a young, spayed doe and an older buck who was a successful show animal and stud prior to becoming a neutered pet. After the initial introduction process, they got along 98% of the time, but the male (given his history) mounted her a lot. I kept them separated when they weren't supervised. Eventually, the doe stood her ground and nipped him back. To my pleasant surprise, he backed off in an "oops, sorry about that" manner, and they've lived happily ever after since! I think standing up for herself worked because his behavior was not about dominating her- rather, the birds and the bees. This could have ended up as a fight if it had been about dominance. It can be hard to tell the difference.

2) You can let them out under strict supervision and religiously interrupt the mounting as soon as it starts until he no longer finds it productive. Separate them BEFORE they get "sick of each other" and slowly try to increase their time out together.

Good luck! And congratulations on the new bunny.

Edited to add:

Not all fights destroy bonds. My doe-doe pair lived together in harmony for almost 5 years. On two occasions, I came home to fur chunks billowing across my floor indicating a disagreement had occurred while I was at work. They didn't hate each other, and they clearly got over whatever their tiff was, as they were inseparable until one of them sadly passed away.
 

Tms

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Messages
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Location
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Hi Tony,

There are a couple approaches I would consider for this issue. While I do not consider myself a bonding a expert, I've successfully bonded several pairs and these opinions are based off my own experiences.

1) You can let them work it out (under supervision until you're confident they're not going to kill each other). This opinion will be unpopular, but sometimes a more hands off approach can work.

All relationships in all species have boundaries. Either your boy will tire himself out, or your girl will let him know that she won't tolerate his behavior. This happened to my most recent pairing consisting of a young, spayed doe and an older buck who was a successful show animal and stud prior to becoming a neutered pet. After the initial introduction process, they got along 98% of the time, but the male (given his history) mounted her a lot. I kept them separated when they weren't supervised. Eventually, the doe stood her ground and nipped him back. To my pleasant surprise, he backed off in an "oops, sorry about that" manner, and they've lived happily ever after since! I think standing up for herself worked because his behavior was not about dominating her- rather, the birds and the bees. This could have ended up as a fight if it had been about dominance. It can be hard to tell the difference.

2) You can let them out under strict supervision and religiously interrupt the mounting as soon as it starts until he no longer finds it productive. Separate them BEFORE they get "sick of each other" and slowly try to increase their time out together.

Good luck! And congratulations on the new bunny.

Edited to add:

Not all fights destroy bonds. My doe-doe pair lived together in harmony for almost 5 years. On two occasions, I came home to fur chunks billowing across my floor indicating a disagreement had occurred while I was at work. They didn't hate each other, and they clearly got over whatever their tiff was, as they were inseparable until one of them sadly passed away.
thanks for this really appreciated.I decided to ride the wave and after a few days it settled down. They’re now totally in love I’ll try and attach a picture of them.02B4D07D-A0E6-449B-9EB2-DE286B033196.jpeg
 
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