Only bites me...

Discussion in 'Nutrition and Behavior' started by Mommy-of-Tenoch, Sep 4, 2014.

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  1. Sep 4, 2014 #1

    Mommy-of-Tenoch

    Mommy-of-Tenoch

    Mommy-of-Tenoch

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    We have a rabbit male not neutered, he is about six months old. He only bites me... sometimes when I walk he will lunge at my feet. Most of the time he is a good rabbit and will follow me. Bit there are times when I will walk and he lunge at my feet... or he will spray me and start nipping at my heels.

    Anyone know why?

    I do not know his life before us. My husband friend found him near a tow yard.
     
  2. Sep 4, 2014 #2

    Channahs

    Channahs

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    It sounds like he's hormonal. He's at that teenage mutant ninja bunny age. I got sprayed the other day and was told that it was because he likes me, so most likely he likes you, and he might be a little tense too since he has so much buntosterone going on. Will you be getting him neutered?
     
  3. Sep 4, 2014 #3

    Mommy-of-Tenoch

    Mommy-of-Tenoch

    Mommy-of-Tenoch

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    I am the only one he bites. He sprays my son all the time, but has never really bitten him. Why am I the only one he bites?

    My husband does not want to neuter him.
     
  4. Sep 4, 2014 #4

    whiskylollipop

    whiskylollipop

    whiskylollipop

    Laura the Bunsnuggler

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    Please do consider getting him neutered. It has a lot of benefits for the bunny as well as you and your family. A non-neutered bunny will be living in constant sexual frustration, and he's clearly already taking it out on you with the lunging and nipping at your feet. That's courting behavior - he is so desperate to mate that he's trying to get your feet to "fall in love" with him! (I guess there's just something about your feet he likes more than other feet!)

    He will also constantly fear rival males coming into his territory, causing him to spray and poop everywhere, even on humans.

    Neutering a bunny at an experienced bunny vet's can run up a few hundred dollars, but every penny out of my very limited student budget has been worth it. For one, a neutered bunny can be litter trained, keeping things very neat and pleasant. Secondly, he will not need baths and will still not smell at all. As long as his litterbox is changed twice a week, you will smell nothing but sweet hay, even if you bury your nose in his fur. Lastly and most importantly, he will be content, settled, friendlier, more easy-going, and no longer driven mad with hormones.

    I know neutering rabbits seems crazy to a non-rabbit-person, like neutering a goldfish or something, but a pet rabbit isn't that far off from a pet cat or dog, and deserves the same humane treatment and quality of life. Hopefully you and your husband will reconsider!
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2014
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  5. Sep 4, 2014 #5

    Mommy-of-Tenoch

    Mommy-of-Tenoch

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    We had another male rabbit that we did not neutered and he was never as vicious as this rabbit. He could of cared less if I cleaned his messes. He also never sprayed, but we got him from a pet store in a flea market.

    These bites sometimes it is like he is trying to latch on to me. He does sprays my son but does not try to bite him...
     
  6. Sep 4, 2014 #6

    kmaben

    kmaben

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    Different buns handle hormones differently. I had a 3 year old French lop buck that didnt spray, was never aggressive, but would get a bit frustrated and hump things. He was on his way to get neutered before he met with liver problems. When I got my 2 year old female she was an absolute monster. Spraying everywhere and everyone, biting, lunging, territorial. She was spayed immediately and within two weeks was semi normal. Different buns different hormones. He might mellow out as he gets older but do you want to continue cleaning up after him? He probably isnt pure bred and showable so what would it hurt to neuter him other than the price tag? In the mean time you can try squealing in a high pitched voice and shouting no when he goes to bite at you. You can also try getting him a stuffed animal for him to "romance." Rabbits can be picky about their "mates" though so you may go through a few before you find one he likes. Rabbits do not do well with negative reinforcement. Do not thump him on the nose, squirt him, etc. They have long memories and hold HUGE grudges.
     
  7. Sep 4, 2014 #7

    Mommy-of-Tenoch

    Mommy-of-Tenoch

    Mommy-of-Tenoch

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    We do not thump him My son has tried squirting him with water but he just shakes it off and goes on. We also put him in his hutch when he sprays, not sure if he cares about that or not.

    My husband is hoping he will grow out of it. We love him to death..
     
  8. Sep 4, 2014 #8

    Hkok

    Hkok

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    Your storry sounds a lot like ours Erslev, we did not have the spray btw.

    I felt the same way as your husband. For some reason we men don't really like the idea about neutering a boy.

    We got him neuted and we have had a much happier bunny after that. It's the right way to go
     
  9. Sep 5, 2014 #9

    whiskylollipop

    whiskylollipop

    whiskylollipop

    Laura the Bunsnuggler

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    He may become less aggressive as he ages, but that could take years and years. And he will always be hormonal. Trying to latch on to your feet is courting behavior, he's trying to get your feet into a submissive mating position so he can mount. (Remember unlike humans animal courting is quite forceful.) As kmaben said, getting a washable rabbit-sized stuffed toy for him to hump might help take the edge off his frustration, definitely give that a try.

    Squirting him with water and putting him back in his cage will not curb hormonal behavior. To him, his behavior is perfectly logical and normal. His hormones are telling him to do these normal bunny things, just like human hormones tell us to protect our children at all costs. So he won't understand why you are punishing him, he'll just think you're being mean. If you neuter him, his hormones won't be there to give him the uncontrollable urge to bite and spray anymore, and once his hormones dissipate he will stop on his own.
     
  10. Sep 7, 2014 #10

    Mommy-of-Tenoch

    Mommy-of-Tenoch

    Mommy-of-Tenoch

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    I am not sure if he is doing out of hormonal frustration. He will start circling me and lunge at me and bite and hold on. Sometimes he gets lifted up when I move my leg. I am scared to walk by him or him be near me, unless I am sitting down. Tonight I put him in his hitch early, I wanted to try and let him stay out of it all night. But I am so paranoid. It gets where I just pick him up and carry him where I am going when he gets near me.

    Any suggestions?
     
  11. Sep 7, 2014 #11

    ladysown

    ladysown

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    AND it might also take about three weeks to a couple of months... Bunnies are all so different. Some never go through a spraying phase, some only do it for a month or so, and still others never stop. Depends on the bunny and your tolerances or abilities to think outside the box when dealing with them. Neutering is not always an option, so it means you need to think differently with differently bunnies.

    What to do about the biting/lunging... talk bunny to him.
    Let him know you are offended. you can stomp your feet at him and turn your back on him.
    Check out the language of lagomorphs..http://language.rabbitspeak.com/
    You could try picking him up, dropping a towel on his head, getting him a stuffie, putting him in his pen for a bit, none of these are bad offensive things to a rabbit.
     

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