Raise your hand if you have a rabbit that's a jerk

Discussion in 'Nutrition and Behavior' started by stevesmum, Jan 26, 2017.

  1. Jan 26, 2017 #1

    stevesmum

    stevesmum

    stevesmum

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    Anyone else? The rabbit we adopted before Christmas, whom we have named Clark, is to be honest a bit of an A-hole. He's just over a year old, has been neutered since late spring or summer. He lunges at my hand when I try to give him a treat. He ducks his head and runs when I try to pet him most of the time. He growls and grunts. He digs on my foot for no conceivable reason. He deliberately does things to get in trouble and then binkies away when he gets caught. The last male rabbit we had was such a sweetheart, it's been a real adjustment dealing with this new character. He has no history of abuse or anything that they knew of when we adopted him. Last night he bit me when I stuck my hand in his enclosure to top up his hay. Unbelievable.
    Please share your jerk rabbit stories but especially I would love to hear about any improvements in personality. I've already warned him there's only a few months left til barbecue season. Just kidding ;)
     
  2. Jan 26, 2017 #2

    stevesmum

    stevesmum

    stevesmum

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    This is him btw

    IMG_1417.jpg
     
  3. Jan 26, 2017 #3

    Aki

    Aki

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    Ahah, he sounds like my kind of bunny. I admit that I kinda like animals with an attitude - I chose my dog because he was the only puppy who completely blew the breeder off when she asked him for a kiss.
    Aki is kind of jerk too, even if she mellowed out a lot during the 7 years we've spent together, and that's why she was always my favorite. As a baby, she would destroy EVERYTHING and turn around and bite if you tried to stop her (the other bunny I had at the time would grunt before biting, at least, and do it only if you touched The Tail... touching The Tail was a big no-no). I remember buying a new set of headphones after she destroyed the previous one, plugging it in for the first time, seeing a ball of fur running at full speed toward the head phone and cutting the cord in one swift bite.
    When she was young, she used to destroy things (shoes, pillows, books, papers, a lot of bed linen, wall paper, electrical cord, a radio clock - you name it, she ate it...) and she would immediately lay down looking all relaxed in the middle of her handywork when she saw me come like 'What?'. Once I even came and found her lounging in my pillow. I mean IN. She had dug a burrow inside and she looked so dead proud of herself too ^^.
    She's a lot nicer and less destructive now that she's an old lady. I can't remember the last time she bit.
     
  4. Jan 26, 2017 #4

    katiecrna

    katiecrna

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    My bunny is a diva and thinks she's better than me. The bun attitude I get is ridiculous... I mean always turns her back and puts her head up high and sits there in utter disgust for me. She is queen of the house for sure. It's going to be SO hard finding her a bunhusband.

    She is bad to my husband and he thinks she's a jerk. Always runs away from him, lounges at him, grabs food and runs. SHe bite him once.
    She's good when everything is done in a routine and on her terms. She really in queen of the house. Like you can't ever come to her, she has to come to you. That's why we get along better. I let her out and essentially leave her alone to do her thing. When I bring out food or a snack I always sit on the floor and she runs to me because she is use to being fed that way, she lets me pet her when she comes to me. So every time I sit on the floor or on the couch she always runs to me or jumps up on the couch to see if I have food.
    I learned that it has to be on her terms. I never pick her up unless I have to. I never grab her, I wait for her to come to me and then I try to touch her. My husband hasn't learned that yet. He always reaches for her, always try's to touch her and she never comes to him, always runs from him.
     
  5. Jan 26, 2017 #5

    stevesmum

    stevesmum

    stevesmum

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    Well it's good to hear I'm not alone. It's going to make things difficult when we have to clip his nails or check him over for anything. Because he WILL not be picked up or even stroked. I hope he mellows with age. But I suspect he will never be friendly. As long as he can bond with my female that's ok.
     
  6. Jan 27, 2017 #6

    thumpingBerry

    thumpingBerry

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    I have an young adult female English Angora I got recently that well, just doesn't want to be touched, or perhaps just on her terms. And here I thought English Angoras, for the breed in general, are mild mannered. If I try to touch her in her cage, even when offering her pellets, she flinches and backs off. Out of the cage she'll find somewhere to hide. I kind of blame this on the breeder that sold her to me ... she apparently gets her rabbits out of the cage by scruffing them (lifting by the looser skin on the neck). Previous to that I think she was a loved pet. But then again she may not be really settled in here yet. But I think her behavior is just part of her personality. It took her only a few days to adjust to my feeding routine and she is always at the front of her cage waiting for pellets when feeding time comes around. Yesterday I was combing her out and she was moving her head back to where I was combing her as if she might bite me. And I was being gentle and not pulling her fur. But I try to be well aware of where (the rabbit's) mouth is. She's lunged twice at me in her cage and most of the time seems displeased at any attempts at petting.

    I have been told by more than one person to insist on doing what needs to be done ... combing, holding, handling, etc ... and not let the rabbit get away with doing what she wants. But I think that may cause extra stress on that rabbit which may or may not be needed.

    She is beautiful, but a handful right now.

    duchess011317a.jpg
     
  7. Jan 27, 2017 #7

    BlackMiniRex

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    have you tried just sitting in his pen and let him come to you, and if he does sniff you, DON'T pet him, Give it a couple days for him to get familiar with you. is his pen/cage near something/other pets that could be making him nervous? does he have enough spaces to hide?
    (i haven't read all the comments)
     
  8. Jan 27, 2017 #8

    katiecrna

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    I'm obsessed wth English angoras! I've been stalker my local rabbit shelters for one to pop up. She is beautiful.
     
  9. Jan 27, 2017 #9

    stevesmum

    stevesmum

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    I'm not really welcome in his pen, nor do I fit in there. He's living side by side with my doe while we work on bonding them. So here's our routine. Cali (doe) gets let out in the morning when my husband leaves for work, at around 7. Cali is a good girl and can be trusted out in our large bonus room mostly unsupervised. Baby and I wake up around 830 or 9. We go downstairs for breakfast and Cali is still out. Bunnies get breakfast. Baby and I come up to play in the bonus room. Cali usually puts herself back in her cage around 10 or so. Clark gets let out and he stays out til 1130 or so. He's not a big morning guy. Baby and I play and leave him alone for the most part. He is free to come check us out, or hide, or whatever. I have kibbles handy so when he comes near I feed him one and give him a pet. But he never settles in for a petting session. Ever. So then when he goes away I usually let Cali out and she sleeps the day away in a designated area she likes. Clark gets let out again around 830 or 9 pm for his big run around and energy burn. Finally i clean their boxes, change their water and put them away by 11 or 1130 pm. It's a tiring routine because they each need out time and Clark can't be trusted unsupervised. Throw in a date for them and it's like my whole day is baby and bunnies. I might be going a bit nuts haha. I can't wait til they're bonded and can just be together all the time.
     
  10. Feb 11, 2017 #10

    Ivythelionhead

    Ivythelionhead

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    My rabbit Mable is a total jerk, she's all buddy buddy with me through the cage bars but if I pick her up and carry her and then put her down and let her play around she's always bites me or growls at me, I had a vet look at her to see if she was sick or hurt but she's fine,she's just a jerk.
     
  11. Feb 13, 2017 #11

    Nancy McClelland

    Nancy McClelland

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    Sounds like he's adept at training you. You need to assert your place as the alpha or the behavior you don't like will escalate. They have to get used to you reaching into "their" hutch and you have to handle them whether they like it or not as you need to clean scent ducts and trim nails so a certain amount of handling is necessary. We have rescued several from death-row that were biters--and I'm mean leaving a chunk of your flesh hanging and bleeding. With patience and training they have all become sweet bunnies even if they still have attitude. Remember that it is you who does the training and not the other way around.
     

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