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BINKYBUNNY FORUMS > HOUSE RABBIT Q & A > Bunny Bonding Question
Last Post by sevyn at 8/16/2007 8:58 AM (8 Replies)
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User is Offline sevyn
Ontario, Canada
72 posts Send Private Message
8/11/2007 4:31 AM

I also asked the same general question on the Rescue Bunnies forum, but I suppose it is really, for now, just a question about my present bun that I am not sure of and would like help on!

How much should I be expecting my bunny's temperament to change when she is spayed? After dealing with my fandom for so long and seeing some bunnies in urgent need, my significant other has fallen in love and wants to become a happy foster daddy. However, we have looked into some local URGENT cases - bunnies that are running out of time and need us now, and that can't really wait until after Vicki's surgery to be adopted. (The intent here is that they would be bonded.)

My question is this:
If we were to bring Vicki into a shelter and go through the process of speed dating, could we a)expect her to pick out a mate she would like while she is unfixed (the bun we adopt will be neutered), and b) expect she would retain her care for this other bunny after her surgery? We would likely wait for her to be spayed before we would attempt bonding them, but we wouldn't want to adopt a bun that she looks ready to bond to and then find that there is no chance after she is fixed. 

 We're really enthusiastic about doing this now and saving a local bunny from an awful fate, so I really hope I can find a way to work this out. Especially with school coming up and whatnot, I think this would be beneficial to my girl as well so she won't be lonely while I'm out of the house. Please help!


User is Offline Scarlet_Rose
Colorado
4371 posts Send Private Message
8/11/2007 6:40 AM

Hi sevyn! I also responded to your other post and was also hesitent to go into too much detail in the foster bunny area about your current bunny.  (Binkybunny will be back shortly)

If you try to bond a neutered male with an unspayed female he will likely be very amorous of her when they are courting.  I know that she wouldn't get pregnant, but she can go into a false pregnancy, rejecting him and warding him off (in other words, reversing your efforts to bond them).  She would then also enter into destructo-bun activity where she'll chew and shred just about anything in preparation for nesting. She'll not respond to his amour and the bunny relationship can suffer from this.  I have seen cases where the pair never bond again (then you're stuck with keeping up two rabbit areas for each bunny) and I just really want to caution you here and make you aware of the possibilities. 

I know you're so excited about saving a bunny and by no means want to stop you from saving a cuddly cute life. As an alternative, would you consider or be open to rescuing a bunny and keeping him in a separate cage side by side with her until she has surgery and is healed? Bunny bonding is normally started this way and then outside "dates" are arranged for formal bonding. It is done like this at the shelter nearby to me when one or the other or both bunnies are not fixed yet, then afterwards the formal dating begins.  Truly, you save a lot of headaches, time and energy by trying to bond two rabbits that are both fixed.

As for how she will be after surgery, I've seen nothing less than malicious bunnies turn into sweethearts when the surgery and healing is over.  There are several threads about how members' rabbitudes changed after the operation. I'll try to dig some of those threads up and post the links here.  I find it is better to hear testimonials and others' input as well.

Please let me know what you decide and if you two can live with keeping them separate until she is fixed too.


User is Offline sevyn
Ontario, Canada
72 posts Send Private Message
8/11/2007 8:09 AM
Hey Scarlet_Rose, thanks for all your input on this issue! I understand (but had somewhat forgotten) about the risk of my bun going into a false pregnancy - I'd just figured that so long as the male isn't intact, there would be no problems - but that's a very good point. I would definitely need to keep them seperate until after her surgery, and I would have no problem housing the two seperately but within reasonable distance of communicating as long as I felt that there would be a hope of bonding them in the long run.

I also expect her temperament to change when I fix her, inevitably, though she is a fairly good tempered bun as is. I'm just not sure what to expect when I take her to the shelter - I'm afraid she might be too aggressive (or too passive) to show any particular reactions to any of the males. Do you think I'll be able to tell when she's found one she likes anyways? I don't want to be deceived into adopting a bunny she likes now and hates to death once she's altered and we're trying to bond them

User is Offline Scarlet_Rose
Colorado
4371 posts Send Private Message
8/11/2007 10:22 AM
You're welcome Sevyn! That's wonderful and I'm glad I could help! I think you'll be able to tell so long as her potential mate doesn't try to nip through the bars at her or she tries to attack them. Bunny matching is not an exact science, but if they can get along amicably enough through the bars, I think you'll do just great! It's so sad that you'll only get to pick one, but it's wonderful you're saving that wonderful him to bond with your sweetie. Now on a more exciting note, when do you think you'll go find him?

User is Offline sevyn
Ontario, Canada
72 posts Send Private Message
8/12/2007 4:25 AM
I e-mailed a place with a few males on Thursday to inquire about bringing my bun in for dating, but I haven't heard back yet. This is a shame because we were planning to head down tomorrow and look for a compatible match to plan for since my S.O. is looking for a new job anyways. (We won't be taking the bunny home the very same day, since we don't want to make a set-up for a separate bun if we aren't yet sure we will be getting one.)
I'm also going to be calling around and trying to find a vet tomorrow - we've found a few 'approved' places that aren't very close, but not too far either, and we've agreed would be worth the trip a couple times a year. Similarly I'm hoping to stop off at one of the closer vet clinics and see if I like the place and to ask about pricing for Vicki's surgery. Lots of bunny stuff to do tomorrow!
I guess for the time being I'll go look at some more shelters in relative distance in case I don't hear back from this one - wish me luck!

User is Offline Scarlet_Rose
Colorado
4371 posts Send Private Message
8/12/2007 5:23 AM
Good luck! I hope it goes well! Sometimes it does take some time for shelters to get back toyou because they are very busy and being a Sunday, they may not respond. I really hope you can find a vet that is close as if there were to be an emergency, the closer the better! My fingers are crossed for you!

User is Offline Gravehearted
Campbell, CA
2442 posts Send Private Message
8/12/2007 7:36 PM
I can understand the feeling of being torn with wanting to save a bunny, but also to do what is best for Vicki.
I do hope you'll be able to find the right vet to have her spayed soon.
~ bunny mom to to HRH Hareiette, Viktor the crazy Krum and Pandora, prima binky ballerina ~ Save a life, Adopt!

User is Offline MooBunnay
Dallas, Texas (Allen)
3088 posts Send Private Message
8/16/2007 8:30 AM
Thats so great you are helping out buns in need There are so many - I know how hard it is to leave any behind when you have the room for more (I was limited by my 1 bedroom apartment before, now I'm in a huge Texas apartment...fortunately my BF moved in with me so we've got SEVEN bunnies in there now, haha). If the bunnies are ignoring each other through the wire it is definitelya good sign that neither finds the other threatening. Maybe you could foster a bunny until Vicki is healed, and then if they don't work out together, you could help them house that bunny and find a new one to bond with Vicki?

User is Offline sevyn
Ontario, Canada
72 posts Send Private Message
8/16/2007 8:58 AM
I forgot to update on how it went - I made a new board but forgot to come back to this one - sorry guys!
At present I'm in a two-bedroom apartment. I'm living alone for now, but my mom will be moving in shortly (and she has A LOT OF STUFF!) so I won't have very much spare room soon either. For that matter, I'm worried that I might have to make my own room their basically-permanent quarters, so I think 2 buns is going to be my cap for now :/ I wish I could have 3 or 4 or even more, honestly. I love the idea and benefits of saving animals in need.

Anyways, my journey to the shelter was fairly uneventful anyways. None of the buns were fixed, they only had one male (a Flemish Giant, yikes!) and while I tried her with a couple girls and they seemed to do okay - that is, the 'dates' accepted Vicki's dominant humping with no protest, haha - we were fairly set on adopting a neutered male so we're still weighing options.

Right now we're waiting to hear back from an application we made for a bun through RabbitRescue who looks more promising altogether - most notably, he has a 3-month 'trial' period where we can try to determine whether or not bonding will work. I like your idea, though, MooBunnay - even if I doubt that bonding will work, I think I'll offer to keep him as a foster bun anyways untl they can find him a new home.
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