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BINKYBUNNY FORUMS > BONDING > Bunny won't lick other bunny. Causing problems in 3x bunny bonding.
Last Post by LBJ10 at 2/01/2012 4:11 PM (6 Replies)
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User is Offline Kayha
5 posts Send Private Message
1/31/2012 5:56 PM

 Hi All, long time lurker and bunny lover, first time poster!

I'm having a bunny bonding problem that I can't find any information about online and I was hoping this lovely community could help me out with. I started out with Cricket (who is a REW lionhead bunny ~2years old and spayed) and brought home Bunny (some kind of chocolate/splotchy white mix ~1 year old and spayed). They got along fairly well together. Bunny would do most of the grooming and would get mad at Cricket occasionally for not grooming in return but Bunny put up with it for the most part and they would cuddle together and everything seemed peachy. 

Then I brought Toby home (a hotot rex ~1 year old, neutered). Toby was a little over-eager in the beginning and proceeded to hump both of their faces whenever he could for as long as they would tolerate (which wasn't long). But eventually settled down and I thought everything was AWESOME because I caught the three of them laying together. 

But soon trouble started when - I think - Bunny realized that Toby would groom her too. Which made her totally dump Cricket in favor of Toby as a playmate. Toby gets along well with both Cricket and Bunny but hangs out with Bunny more. Cricket is usually ostracized to a corner of their pen. And by ostracized I mean Bunny has gotten territorial against Cricket and now growls and attacks her when Cricket comes close. Bunny will do this pretty much whenever Cricket is around. Which is a problem since they all live together. I think the main root of their problem is that Bunny would groom Cricket then ask for grooming in return and Cricket just refuses. Cricket will either try to force her head under Bunny's head again or she'll run away. The running away more started after Bunny's attacks became more common. 

I've tried stress bonding the two of them back together but nothing seems to work. I can always get to the point where Bunny will lick Cricket but as soon as Bunny asks Cricket to lick her, it all falls apart and the chasing starts again. I've tried putting banana on Bunny's head - which Cricket loves - but Cricket is apparently too terrified to take it off Bunny's head. Cricket doesn't lick Toby either nor will she lick banana off of Toby's head. 

 

So long story short, I have 2 bunnies with sticky heads and 1 bunny alone in a corner. What do I do?


User is Offline LBJ10
5037 posts Send Private Message
1/31/2012 6:22 PM
This isn't uncommon. I've heard lot's of stories where people try to have a trio and one bunny is the "odd man out".

User is Offline Kayha
5 posts Send Private Message
1/31/2012 6:43 PM
Right but I feel like if I could get Cricket to lick Bunny or Toby for that matter, my problems would be solved. Any ideas?

User is Offline Elrohwen
Hudson Valley, NY
Forum Leader
7301 posts Send Private Message
2/01/2012 5:10 AM
I don't think there's anyway to force another rabbit to groom - they just have to figure it out on their own if the banana/raisin on the head trick doesn't work. I agree that it's not uncommon to have an odd man out situation. Unfortunately I don't think there's an easy answer to this. Cricket might be more comfortable as a single bunny or with her own partner.
- Elrohwen

User is Offline Sarita
(Dallas)
Forum Leader
16729 posts Send Private Message
2/01/2012 5:52 AM
You cannot make bunnies groom each other - they decide who gets groomed. I don't think that would solve your problem because it may not be an ongoing thing having the grooming going on.

How long have they all 3 been together?

User is Offline Kayha
5 posts Send Private Message
2/01/2012 12:47 PM
Cricket and Bunny were together for 6 months before I introduced Toby to them. The three have been coexisting for 2/3 months now. I think Cricket may not realize that relationships are give and take

User is Offline LBJ10
5037 posts Send Private Message
2/01/2012 4:11 PM
Some buns are just like that. You might want to consider having Cricket by herself or finding her a friend that doesn't mind having a one-sided relationship. Maybe it would work out better if you let her pick out a friend. I agree with the others, you can't force her to groom the other buns if she doesn't feel inclined to.
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BINKYBUNNY FORUMS > BONDING > Bunny won't lick other bunny. Causing problems in 3x bunny bonding.

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