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BINKYBUNNY FORUMS > BONDING > Taking the bun dating!
Last Post by bmt87 at 8/14/2012 5:25 PM (7 Replies)
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User is Offline bmt87
309 posts Send Private Message
8/10/2012 8:33 AM

So - it's official....Lola has her first bun date at the local HRS on Aug. 19th.

After a lot of debating we decided getting her a friend is the best thing to do for her. She seems quite happy by herself right now but we know that around this time next year we will definitely be moving (the boyfriend is currently looking into PhD programs) so we want to alleviate the stress of moving one bun and have a friend for her to travel with.  And, besides, she has been spending a lot of time staring at the fish tank and I think she needs someone who can actually speak her language.

 

My biggest concerns are as follows:

  1. Lola is immaculate.  She has carpet in her NIC condo that she doesn't bother at all and hasn't had a potty accident since the one week before she got spayed and couldn't help her raging hormones.  She also could careless about wires.  We have the apartment as bunny-proofed as possible but there are still areas that it would be very difficult to make off-limits. I'm worried after all the reading I've done that bringing another bun into the equation will ruin this.  What if we get a un-litter-trainable, wire chewing, carpet digger!?
  2. What if they seem like they are bonded (we are going through the local HRS to make sure things are done properly and I've read up a lot on the proper way to go about it) but then when we bring them home they aren't?
  3. This one is more of a question that I haven't read about in 'bonding" - is it best to put Lola in the new cage and the new bun in Lola's cage when we first bring them home until they are together in the same cage?  That way the new bun can leave his scent all over Lola's NIC condo and let their smells mingle to reduce territoriality?  If that makes sense?  Just something I've been wondering.  They will both eventually be living in the NIC condo (...or we can't have 2 buns and it defeats the purpose of Lola having a partner) so I was trying to think of the best way to go about it.
  4. Lola is a little spoiled diva - so I think there is a high probability she will be stubborn and destined to be a solo bun.
  5. And this one may seem selfish - but what if Lola picks a bun we don't like?  I am a pretty big believer that people have a connection with their pets...what if the bun she picks doesn't mesh with us?  I know that seems shallow but I am a huge animal lover and just want to make sure everything is perfect. 

Thanks in advance for the support! 

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User is Offline Elrohwen
Hudson Valley, NY
Forum Leader
7322 posts Send Private Message
8/10/2012 10:12 AM
Here's what I've learned from my experience with my pair. I hope it helps a bit.

1) It's absolutely possible that you'll get a troublemaker with terrible litter habits, so be prepared for that possibility. When we got Hannah, I freaked out and wanted to give her back because she was crazy hyper, didn't have great litter habits, and got into *everything*. Otto is quiet, calm, is incredibly clean, and doesn't do more than lay around the house, so I was really afraid to end up with a crazy bunny. Now, I adore Hannah and I'm so glad I kept her. She is crazy, and has a lot of energy, and sometimes gets into things no matter how well I thought I bunny proofed, but she's so entertaining and snuggly that I forgive her. Her litter habits also improved a lot (once she got over marking a new house that contained another rabbit). She destroys more things than Otto, but over time I've put their pen on a rug and she's mostly left it alone. In her case, having a calm friend and plenty of space allowed her to be less anxious and less destructive than she was as a single bun. Not that this is always the case, especially for a bun who is just destructive and not anxious like her, but having a friend can give an active bunny something to do with their time other than chewing and diging.

2) Is the HRS going to hold them for a time and bond them for you? Or are you going to date and then bring them home to bond yourself? Either way, there will be an adjustment period and it will be stressful for you (at least it was for me) but you'll get through it. I'm of the opinion that just about any bunnies can be bonded with patience. As long as they're not at each others throats going for blood (and of course that's the point of the dating, to make sure this doesn't happen), you'll get them bonded. If you only date and then do the bonding yourself, be prepared for at least a month or two of sessions. Mine were pretty good together from the start, but it takes some time for them to get comfortable and learn how to read each other, so don't get nervous if they need some time.

3) Most bonders switch them between cages every day or every couple of days so that both scents would be all over both cages. I couldn't do that with mine, as Otto's cage wasn't super secure (since he doesn't ever try to escape) and I knew Hannah could break out of it, so she had to stay on her side and it worked out fine. Even if you're going to build a whole new cage for them to share, having them swap sides will get them used to living with each others scent. At the end of the day, bonding is all about making them think that this strange new bunny is a part of their "warren" whether they like it or not. Haha

4) Bunny personality around people isn't always a good indicator of how they will be with other rabbits. Otto is laid back and nonchalant around people and turned out to be the same with other buns. Hannah is sweet with people but bossy, and she is bossy with other rabbits, but at the same time she loves them and isn't mean on purpose. She was absolutely obsessed with Otto at first (still sort of is) and while she can be overbearing to him, it's obvious that she was really excited to have a bunny friend and just wanted to love him. Not every diva will hate having a new rabbit around

5) There isn't just one bun for everybun. We decided that we really wanted a second lop, so we really focused on lops. We were lucky that Otto was good with every bun we put him with, so we could choose which one we liked best, but even a fairly difficult bunny will probably get along reasonably well with a variety of rabbits. If you don't like any of the ones she likes, just wait a while and look again later. If she turns out to be very difficult and really only gets along with one other bunny, then you'll probably be so happy she's not beating the new bun up that you'll take him home right away :-P
- Elrohwen

User is Offline bmt87
309 posts Send Private Message
8/11/2012 1:33 PM
Thanks so much for your response Elrowen! I really appreciate it!

You brought up so many good points - and made me think a lot about the potential new bun. I am up for the challenge and just hope everything goes smoothly. I'll keep everyone at BB in the loop once things get started!
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User is Offline LittlePuffyTail
New Brunswick, Canada
Forum Leader
11833 posts Send Private Message
8/14/2012 2:53 AM
Good luck finding a bun-friend!!!!
Proud to be a Bunny Hugger and a voice for the voiceless
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User is Offline Stitchntwinks
207 posts Send Private Message
8/14/2012 3:03 AM
Good luck! Where are you going to find your new bun?

User is Offline bmt87
309 posts Send Private Message
8/14/2012 12:54 PM

She's going to the San Diego House Rabbit Society to go on bun dates. We want to adopt this time around -- it was fun/adorable having a baby bun but I would feel guilty getting another knowing that there are SO many that need good loving homes.

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User is Offline FrankieFlash
Michigan
1715 posts Send Private Message
8/14/2012 4:02 PM
Goodluck BMT87. I found this thread extremely helpful because I'm in a similar place. My latest concern is bringing in a new bun that might have underlying illness and them both getting sick. Hopefully my paranoia won't rub off on you

User is Offline bmt87
309 posts Send Private Message
8/14/2012 5:25 PM
Don't worry - it has. I've also thought of that one - which is why I am hoping adopting a bun that has had recent vet checks is the best course of action. Another reason we aren't getting a baby bun.
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