Should I get a second rabbit?

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Hi all!

So I've had my rabbit Sherlock for a year now and he's one year old. In the past six months he's become considerably less affectionate. He's definitely still comfortable with me, because he'll run up to me, won't run away when I walk up to him, and flops right next to me all the time. He just doesn't enjoy being pet and cuddled as much anymore. I'm working on that.
The thing is, I've always been happy having a solo bun. It's just recently that I've started considering the idea of getting another. I know that bonding rabbits is hard and that's not a process I'd like to go through. Seriously, I don't have time for two bunnies that live separately from one another. But I've been more busy lately and haven't been able to take him out of his x-pen as much (and not for long either, because my parents don't trust him). I just wonder if he'd be more happy and fulfilled if he had a partner.
Would he become more affectionate? Would the bunnies just clump together and not want any attention from me anymore? I love Sherlock so much, and to be honest I'm not sure how much I like the idea of getting another because I wouldn't want to ruin our relationship/not be able to give time equally to both. Also, does cost and such rise with having two? I'd really love everyone's input!! Thank you!!
 

WhiteBunnyEcho

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I honestly would never have a bunny that wasn’t bonded after seeing mine all bonded. It’s so fulfilling for them. Grooming each other and laying together.. I can tell my 4 (& 2 fosters) are way happier with a companion than before I got them bonded. Not to come of the wrong way or anything but, don’t let the thought of your relationship changing with your bunny be a deciding factor especially if, like you said, you don’t have as much time and attention for your bun as they need. Rabbits are such social animals, I really do think your boy would benefit from a companion bunny.

now, as for bonding, it’s hit or miss on how quick. If you decide to get another bun, I highly suggest getting a female. Male female bonds are way easier than female and female or male and male. It took me about a year to bond my two males together (after being neutered) and for my male and female, only took the car ride home from picking up my female. Same for my other male and female, took maybe three bonding sessions before they loved each other. :)

of course cost will rise a little bit with veggiea, hay, pellets, etc. but for the most part having one rabbit is no different than having two! or even 6 like me haha! Once they are bonded and litter trained, having two bonded rabbits is so awesome!
 

Blue eyes

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If you feel guilty for not letting him out of his playpen enough, have you considered ways to change this habit? What I mean is that when a rabbit is let out for playtime, it doesn't have to be one-on-one time with you. They can be quite content to be in proximity of you even if you aren't directly interacting with him. For example, when I'm busy on my computer, bun can be hopping about nearby (or just lounging nearby). To them, that is bonding time. So is it possible that your rabbit could actually be able to have more out-of-pen time when you are occupied with something else but still nearby? This could be one way to help both you and your bun.

I've had single rabbits (and bonded ones) that just weren't into much attention/petting. That can just be the innate personality of some rabbits-- especially once they become full adults. That doesn't necessarily mean they need a bondmate to be happy.

You are correct that bonding can be a daunting task. Yes, some go quite easily and smoothly, but it isn't always so easy... or even possible. If dealing with that scenario simply isn't something you are ready to do, then I actually would not encourage you to do it. There may come a time when that changes and you feel that it's the right choice and that you are willing to try it. If that isn't now, then perhaps seeing about making other adjustments as mentioned may be an acceptable alternative.
 
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I honestly would never have a bunny that wasn’t bonded after seeing mine all bonded. It’s so fulfilling for them. Grooming each other and laying together.. I can tell my 4 (& 2 fosters) are way happier with a companion than before I got them bonded. Not to come of the wrong way or anything but, don’t let the thought of your relationship changing with your bunny be a deciding factor especially if, like you said, you don’t have as much time and attention for your bun as they need. Rabbits are such social animals, I really do think your boy would benefit from a companion bunny.

now, as for bonding, it’s hit or miss on how quick. If you decide to get another bun, I highly suggest getting a female. Male female bonds are way easier than female and female or male and male. It took me about a year to bond my two males together (after being neutered) and for my male and female, only took the car ride home from picking up my female. Same for my other male and female, took maybe three bonding sessions before they loved each other. :)

of course cost will rise a little bit with veggiea, hay, pellets, etc. but for the most part having one rabbit is no different than having two! or even 6 like me haha! Once they are bonded and litter trained, having two bonded rabbits is so awesome!
That's some good advice, thank you!
 
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If you feel guilty for not letting him out of his playpen enough, have you considered ways to change this habit? What I mean is that when a rabbit is let out for playtime, it doesn't have to be one-on-one time with you. They can be quite content to be in proximity of you even if you aren't directly interacting with him. For example, when I'm busy on my computer, bun can be hopping about nearby (or just lounging nearby). To them, that is bonding time. So is it possible that your rabbit could actually be able to have more out-of-pen time when you are occupied with something else but still nearby? This could be one way to help both you and your bun.

I've had single rabbits (and bonded ones) that just weren't into much attention/petting. That can just be the innate personality of some rabbits-- especially once they become full adults. That doesn't necessarily mean they need a bondmate to be happy.

You are correct that bonding can be a daunting task. Yes, some go quite easily and smoothly, but it isn't always so easy... or even possible. If dealing with that scenario simply isn't something you are ready to do, then I actually would not encourage you to do it. There may come a time when that changes and you feel that it's the right choice and that you are willing to try it. If that isn't now, then perhaps seeing about making other adjustments as mentioned may be an acceptable alternative.
That's also some great advice!! Most of the time I do take him out like that, where I'm in his proximity or doing some reading on the floor next to him. I just can't keep him out too long because not everything I do can be done in the same room, and my parents don't like me leaving him by himself.
Yeah, this change in personality happened around the two year mark, so that makes sense!!
I'll definitely be thinking on this for awhile before I make any decisions about getting a friend for Sherlock. Thank you!!
 

Eithne Dundas

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Hi all!

So I've had my rabbit Sherlock for a year now and he's one year old. In the past six months he's become considerably less affectionate. He's definitely still comfortable with me, because he'll run up to me, won't run away when I walk up to him, and flops right next to me all the time. He just doesn't enjoy being pet and cuddled as much anymore. I'm working on that.
The thing is, I've always been happy having a solo bun. It's just recently that I've started considering the idea of getting another. I know that bonding rabbits is hard and that's not a process I'd like to go through. Seriously, I don't have time for two bunnies that live separately from one another. But I've been more busy lately and haven't been able to take him out of his x-pen as much (and not for long either, because my parents don't trust him). I just wonder if he'd be more happy and fulfilled if he had a partner.
Would he become more affectionate? Would the bunnies just clump together and not want any attention from me anymore? I love Sherlock so much, and to be honest I'm not sure how much I like the idea of getting another because I wouldn't want to ruin our relationship/not be able to give time equally to both. Also, does cost and such rise with having two? I'd really love everyone's input!! Thank you!!
Hi! I have the same question as you. I adopted a Holland lop 3 years ago, and he is so snuggly with our Samoyed (who is pretty disinterested in him!), that I think he would really benefit from another bunny. That said, I have no desire for 2 separate bunnies!

I'm curious how things turned out for you - any info/advice would be greatly appreciated!
 

JBun

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Hi! I have the same question as you. I adopted a Holland lop 3 years ago, and he is so snuggly with our Samoyed (who is pretty disinterested in him!), that I think he would really benefit from another bunny. That said, I have no desire for 2 separate bunnies!

I'm curious how things turned out for you - any info/advice would be greatly appreciated!

Usually the best way to find a compatible match for a bun, is to find a rescue or shelter that has already fixed rabbits and allows bunny dates. Even better are ones that help with bonding advice and bonding issues that arise. And there seem to be several rabbit rescues in your state, though you'll need to contact them or look on their website, to find out what their adoption and bunny date/bonding policies are.

 

Orrin

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We have three bonded pairs and it is touching and heartwarming to see the love and affection they show toward one another. I would heartily recommend your getting a companion, providing it doesn't cause any problems within your family.

Our most recent bond took place a couple of days ago. We have a 4-year-old doe who lost her partner on New Years Eve. She's been lonesome ever since; but, in April we adopted a young Flemish Giant who free-roamed in our house; but, always with a fence separating the two.

We neutered the Flemmie and waited until the time was right. By then, the two were very much in love; but, with that pesky fence between them.
When we opened the gate it was "instant love and snuggle." We have never before seen so much tenderness and affection in any of our rabbits. It is sheer joy all around.

We got lucky. I hope you do, too.
 

Eithne Dundas

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We have three bonded pairs and it is touching and heartwarming to see the love and affection they show toward one another. I would heartily recommend your getting a companion, providing it doesn't cause any problems within your family.

Our most recent bond took place a couple of days ago. We have a 4-year-old doe who lost her partner on New Years Eve. She's been lonesome ever since; but, in April we adopted a young Flemish Giant who free-roamed in our house; but, always with a fence separating the two.

We neutered the Flemmie and waited until the time was right. By then, the two were very much in love; but, with that pesky fence between them.
When we opened the gate it was "instant love and snuggle." We have never before seen so much tenderness and affection in any of our rabbits. It is sheer joy all around.

We got lucky. I hope you do, too.
Thank you! So - you waited 5 months for them to actually meet? That seems very hard (unless your house is large enough for such separate open spaces!)
 

Claireloveswillow

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i only have 1 rabbit a 1 year old female lionhead. she is a house rabbit and basically has a bedroom kitted out for her entertainment. she has a large dog crate which is her space but she has full access to the bedroom at all times (all bunny proofed). I wake up at 4am in the week to spend 2 hours 1 on 1 bonding time, normally Willow flops down next to me on the bed and I stroke her etc or she will bring her furry bedraggled teddy to show me, her behaviour really does mimic our dog in some ways. She has been introduced gradually to our Cavapoo Bella, and quite honestly it’s the dog that runs away, Willow is pretty adept at flirting a little, however, I would never leave my eyes off them together for 1 second. After work I spend 4 hours 1 on 1 bonding time and i’ve also slept regularly in the spare bed and whenever i awake Willow is always lay at the end of my bed ears pricked up as though she’s keeps watch over me. I do feel guilty that I didn’t buy 2 rabbits but I am worried that introducing another bunny will upset Willow as she is spoilt, we all spend time with her throughout the day even when i am at work my youngest daughter will sit and devote hours to her, it’s now got to the point that i feel in our situation Willow receives so much time with us that she may resent another bunny moving in so at the moment i’ve decided to keep Willow as 1 rabbit. I hope this isn’t seen as unkind but I don’t want to upset willow and end up with a very happy rabbit who licks me all the time, purrs away and makes buzzy noises constantly to a resentful territorial rabbit. Any thoughts?
 

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Orrin

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Thank you! So - you waited 5 months for them to actually meet? That seems very hard (unless your house is large enough for such separate open spaces!)
Yes, we waited. First off the buck needed to grow a little before his neutering. Then, the hormones needed to wear off. Then, the doe was mysteriously infected with mites and the treatment for them took a while longer. (Where they came from we will never know. We've had rabbits for years and no mites, ever.)

We sort of divided up the house in the meantime. The doe had the run of our kitchen and family area all the time, as well as our bedroom in the daytime. The buck took over our office, a hallway and also got to go outside in the cool mornings and evenings.

It was all a bit of a nuisance, having to open and close gates all over the place; but, it was well worth it. It is heartwarming to see the love and devotion the two have for one another. Here, Rusty put his head down and hoped for a kiss. Blue lovingly obliged. :)Snuggle_7075.jpg Snuggle_7080.jpg
 

Eithne Dundas

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Yes, we waited. First off the buck needed to grow a little before his neutering. Then, the hormones needed to wear off. Then, the doe was mysteriously infected with mites and the treatment for them took a while longer. (Where they came from we will never know. We've had rabbits for years and no mites, ever.)

We sort of divided up the house in the meantime. The doe had the run of our kitchen and family area all the time, as well as our bedroom in the daytime. The buck took over our office, a hallway and also got to go outside in the cool mornings and evenings.

It was all a bit of a nuisance, having to open and close gates all over the place; but, it was well worth it. It is heartwarming to see the love and devotion the two have for one another. Here, Rusty put his head down and hoped for a kiss. Blue lovingly obliged. :)View attachment 62599 View attachment 62600


Awww - so sweet! Thanks for sharing this beautiful story!
 

JBun

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i only have 1 rabbit a 1 year old female lionhead. she is a house rabbit and basically has a bedroom kitted out for her entertainment. she has a large dog crate which is her space but she has full access to the bedroom at all times (all bunny proofed). I wake up at 4am in the week to spend 2 hours 1 on 1 bonding time, normally Willow flops down next to me on the bed and I stroke her etc or she will bring her furry bedraggled teddy to show me, her behaviour really does mimic our dog in some ways. She has been introduced gradually to our Cavapoo Bella, and quite honestly it’s the dog that runs away, Willow is pretty adept at flirting a little, however, I would never leave my eyes off them together for 1 second. After work I spend 4 hours 1 on 1 bonding time and i’ve also slept regularly in the spare bed and whenever i awake Willow is always lay at the end of my bed ears pricked up as though she’s keeps watch over me. I do feel guilty that I didn’t buy 2 rabbits but I am worried that introducing another bunny will upset Willow as she is spoilt, we all spend time with her throughout the day even when i am at work my youngest daughter will sit and devote hours to her, it’s now got to the point that i feel in our situation Willow receives so much time with us that she may resent another bunny moving in so at the moment i’ve decided to keep Willow as 1 rabbit. I hope this isn’t seen as unkind but I don’t want to upset willow and end up with a very happy rabbit who licks me all the time, purrs away and makes buzzy noises constantly to a resentful territorial rabbit. Any thoughts?

As long as a rabbit is getting plenty of interaction, they don't necessarily need a bunny companion. It does sound like you spend lots of time with your rabbit. Though if you do decide to try and find your bun a friend, I would suggest finding a rescue that you can do bunny dates with, to find the perfect match for your rabbit. If it were me, I would only go for a match that's immediately apparent they like each other. This way you won't risk a difficult bonding experience, or ending up with two rabbits that don't absolutely love each other.

If you're wanting more info or have more questions, I would suggest to start your own thread under the appropriate subforum. It's best to not ask new questions in an old thread, as it can sometimes cause confusion in the responses given, and also your post can get overlooked.
 

Claireloveswillow

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thank you and sorry only joined last week wasn’t sure what I was doing, I just saw the Should I get a second rabbit and thought that’s where I should post it as that was my query.
 
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