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BINKYBUNNY FORUMS > BEHAVIOR > Jessica's Back and Naughtier than Ever!!!!
Last Post by skunklionshow at 3/12/2007 12:33 PM (19 Replies)
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User is Offline skunklionshow
City of Brotherly "Shove"
1247 posts Send Private Message
2/21/2007 11:48 AM

Jessica is completely healthy again!  Her puncture wound has completely healed and her fur has nearly all grown back---the vet seemed shocked at how great she turned out.

She has officially become one of the cats (I have 4 feline beasts).  It seems that when the kitties get tired of her, they pop her on the head and/or butt, and she's off to do something else.  My biggie/fattie Maxwell (18lbs) enjoys licking Jessica on the head.  I call it "tasting"her, but she seems to like it.  The kitties do not tolerate her jumping up on their kitty bed...that's just not something to be shared at this point.

However...Jessica has completely forgotten how to use her litterbox!  She poops and pees everywhere.  Sometimes she potties outside the cats' litterbox!  She's ruined our living room rug, so my hubby doesn't want her out and about unless she is supervised!

Anyone have similar drama w/ a bunny "forgetting" how to use the litterbox?  I've started potty training again....but she's very stubborn now.

 

"The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated." Ghandi


User is Offline poopy
Orange County, CA
694 posts Send Private Message
2/21/2007 12:38 PM
Maybe you can give her her own litterbox right next to the cat's litterbox. Make sure she doesn't use the cat one though because the litter material can be dangerous to her.
qwerajsdlfjklwerajioasefklasdfjklasdfiojwe*!*!*$

User is Offline BB
San Francisco Area
Forum Leader
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2/21/2007 7:54 PM

Poopy's idea of putting her own litterbox next the kitty's is good.   It sounds like if she is trying to tell the cats she's part of the group, but since cats aren't as group oriented (at least in the same way as rabbits) they may careless, and she's stuck trying to prove herself to deaf ears.   But at least if she has "her" box nearby then maybe that will at least encourage her to mark in there.  

The other thing Poopy mentioned about the kitty litter is important. What kind of litter do the cats use and does she ever go in their box?

When a bunny loses their littterbox habits it's either due to health, something set them off, usually other animals, or they just gradually got worse and bad habits set in.     If it's not a health issue, then you will need to start from the beginning and confine her.  Do you have an xpen so she can get at least limited exercise during her retraining?

OHH, and I am sorry, I can't remember - is she spayed yet?  I know she had babies, but after that?


User is Offline Bear
United Kingdom
41 posts Send Private Message
2/21/2007 10:50 PM
Well ive just joined and read your plight... and have to admit im havin a similar problem with my bun, Teddy, he was perfectly liter trained but he hates being picked up and so i didnt pick him up.. but friends informed me i must pick him up to get him used to it for vet trips/claw clipping etc (by the way hes a rescue about 2 years old from the RSPCA and ive only had him about 3 months) thing is now he doesnt trust me to stroke him during run time as he thinks im going to pick him up every time and he has started toileting everywhere (im sure he doesnt think hes a rabbit either) he was biting when i picked him up.. so i squealed... and thats supposed to stop them.. but oh nooooo not him! I have also tried to do the limited space to get him back into good toilet habbits but that hasnt even worked so im struggling too.. other than all this hes a very happy bunny and i watched him fall asleep for the first time yesterday in the middle of the lounge floor.. was so funny and yet so cute.

User is Offline Lippy
10 posts Send Private Message
2/22/2007 2:23 AM
Hi Bear. I have exactly the same problem with OJ - he hates being picked. He used to tolerate being stroked but now he just runs away as he thinks I'm going to pick him up. I've started sitting on the floor and bribing with treats so that he'll now happily jump and sit on my lap but still will not tolerate stroking. Hopefully with time he'll realise that I won't hurt him and get more comfortable. It's just about being patient and taking small steps.

User is Offline poopy
Orange County, CA
694 posts Send Private Message
2/22/2007 8:46 AM
This is true. Same problem with Medusa. She hides out after I attempt or am successful at picking her up. She will sleep in her litterbox all day because its a safe place where I am unlikely to get her. She also sometimes seems to start marking (with poops) after any successful experience.
qwerajsdlfjklwerajioasefklasdfjklasdfiojwe*!*!*$

User is Offline BB
San Francisco Area
Forum Leader
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2/22/2007 8:21 PM
Welcome Bear!  I would agree with your friends if he was a baby, but the fact he is two years old means you may have to approach this more gently.   Though I agree it is important to get a bunny used to being picked up to at least  tolerate it BUT not until you have created a strong secure bond of trust between the two of you first.   And then when you do, don't start picking  him up everyday, because then he will associate you with something unpleasant.   Instead start by doing it once a week.  Offer a treat while you hold him. Sometimes bunnies will take it, sometimes other won't, but just try it.   Make sure you approach him often without picking him up.  You also might establish a time of day to do it, so he can at least predict it, and feel relaxed the rest of the time.    Rabbits are very aware of schedules and routines

I think getting a bunny to feel safe in his environment and around you is of the most importance first.  Yes, you will need to pick him up when you need to clip his nails and take him to the vet and that may be a real struggle that you both have to deal for a bit.  But right now, focus on getting him to trust you again.   He is marking because he no longer feels safe, and so once he's safe again, he should stop, but you may need to continue to limite space if bad habits set in while he was trying to tell you back off via marking.

The squeel thing works when the bunny isn't actually trying to hurt you.  Like when they are just nipping at you to make you move.    But if you are holding him and he's trying to escape, he WANTS to inflict enough pain that will make stop holding him.  So your squeel is what he would expect.   What you can do is keep a towel over the area he could bite to protect yoursefl.  He will soon discover biting has zero effect.

Again welcome, and keep us updated with his littertraining and such.

User is Offline Faye Perry
Leicestershire, UK
114 posts Send Private Message
2/22/2007 10:26 PM

Hi Bear

I have TWO bunnies that dislike being picked up..

Everybody's advice is good and getting the trust back is the key.  Its not very common to get bunnies that like to be picked up (none of mine have) but getting them to tolerate it is wise, but not always easy.

Booboo will tolerate it for a short while, but Mable absolutely hates it.  When we first got here she would run away when we reached out to stroke her... so we worked on NOT picking her up at all (unless absolutely necessary - like when they had a fight) and fussing/stroking her on her terms, ie on the floor.  The thing is she loved having her head rubbed and would sit for ages but as soon as we started to stroke the rest of her, especially her sides, she would bolt off. 

The other weird thing was she would always come over to give us kisses, or lick my hubby's head so long as we didn't reach out to stroke her!

The thing is to be patient, if there is one thing i've learnt with my two buns its 'be patient' (something that doesn't come naturally to me believe me) - little steps get you where you want to be EVENTUALLY

Mable now lies spread out being stroked all over, and even sometimes comes when we call her for fuss.  She even lays like this when i brush her ALL over.  I'm spending more time stroking her on the floor and slightly holding her while still on the floor, to see if this will help with the picking up issue...

whats that saying... slowly, slowly catchy monkey


User is Offline Bear
United Kingdom
41 posts Send Private Message
2/23/2007 4:33 AM
Thank you thank you thank you everyone for your helpful tips. You are all life savers. A friend of mine has a bunny (Lilly) but she was the perfect house rabbit from day one so my friend has run out of suggestions on what to do with Teddy so im glad I found this Binkybunny site.

For now I am going to refrain from picking Teddy up at the and earn his trust again, that way hopefully he'l stop going to the toilet where he shouldnt again. Its funny tho.. if im in the lounge he always comes straight up to me and licks my clothes and lets me pet him but he doesnt hang around long as theres too much fun to be had.

Il keep you all posted on how he's progressing tho.

User is Offline poopy
Orange County, CA
694 posts Send Private Message
2/25/2007 10:36 AM
A way you can communicate that you just want to pet him is when you are facing him. Tap your hand on the floor about 5 in. away from his nose. If he puts his head down that means "Ok, you can groom me." If he turns away then he's not ready so let him have his space. This helps Medusa know my intentions.
qwerajsdlfjklwerajioasefklasdfjklasdfiojwe*!*!*$

User is Offline Bear
United Kingdom
41 posts Send Private Message
2/27/2007 4:09 AM
Well Teddy is starting to trust me more... ive started doing the tapping on the floor in front of him to say im offering to pet you and that seems to work... and............. last night i was lying on the floor and he climbing up and sat on my stomach... i was most astonished (not too much to knock him off tho lol)... I am now also trying the clicker method on him.... it was my dads idea.. he thinks because it worked with his dog it will work with my rabbit lol... well im willing to give it a try.. you never know.. this time next year he may be sitting on my lap and fetching sticks lol!

User is Offline BB
San Francisco Area
Forum Leader
8643 posts Send Private Message
2/27/2007 1:09 PM

Clicker training absolutely works with rabbits. I have took a class at the House Rabbit Society and we practiced with the shelter bunnies.  It worked very quickly.

They did provide us with "quieter clickers" as  the louder ones can startle some bunnies and hinder training.   I also have a book to help as a refresher course.  

The trainers showed us a bunny that would flop on command and a guinea pig that would pick up a water bottle cap and carry it to a particular destination.     They had gotten to the point that they would just hear the spoken command and do it.    So let us know how your clicker training goes.


User is Offline poopy
Orange County, CA
694 posts Send Private Message
2/28/2007 7:52 AM
Did the flop command take forever because you would have to wait around for them to flop and then give the reward, especially if they don't flop very often.
qwerajsdlfjklwerajioasefklasdfjklasdfiojwe*!*!*$

User is Offline BB
San Francisco Area
Forum Leader
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3/01/2007 12:40 PM

Yep!  That's right.  WIth something unique like that they just waited and everytime the bunny flopped they would click and treat.    I do remember them saying though that the bunny flopped a couple of times a day.   I also think I remember them saying though that she hung out in the office, so they would just see it happen.  Didn't have to wait, but for the rest of us, it would be a waiting game.  

I know with Jack, he flops alot, and I can almost predict when it's going to happen.   But with the other two, I would have to find another trick to train them with because it could take eternity to wait for a flop.

I bet you could train binkies on command though!

 


User is Offline poopy
Orange County, CA
694 posts Send Private Message
3/01/2007 12:59 PM
so do yours follow those commands? i eventually want to teach pookers to jump through hula hoops. he is smarter than medusa...i tried teaching medusa but she is so slow to catch on to anything. i think she might have been stepped on the head as a young one (not even joking) because it might explain why her jaw is all crooked.
qwerajsdlfjklwerajioasefklasdfjklasdfiojwe*!*!*$

User is Offline BB
San Francisco Area
Forum Leader
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3/08/2007 7:36 PM

Sorry for my late reply. I am playing catch-up.   I have to admit that I have gotten busy, and clicker training has not been my priority. But in the beginning when I was starting the training.  I got them to touch their nose to the ball at the end of stick when they wanted a treat (that's just the beginning stages, eventually, it goes into more advanced stuff that is actually useful.    Like for taking meds, litter training, coming when called etc.  But I haven't used my free time to continue on just yet.  But I do plan to at some point.


User is Offline skunklionshow
City of Brotherly "Shove"
1247 posts Send Private Message
3/09/2007 11:20 AM

I'm pleased to report that Jessi is back to using her litterbox!  My mom was very impressed during her visit this past weekend.  She said she never knew that bunnies could use a litterbox.  Unfortunately she not only uses her litterbox, but also the cats litterboxes.  Jessica's litterbox gets yesterday's news and my cats use scooping litter.

2 of my cats are very picky about the litterbox and will often rebel if "their" litter isn't used.  She just seems to prefer the kitty litter box w/ the scoopable litter.  I think she really enjoys jumping around w/ the scoopable litter.  I figure at this point...its the best I can do to accommodate her and the cats.

The other problem I have is w/ my IBS/bullimia cat.  His vomit flow has increased lately.  Turns out he likes to eat the bunny's food.  She doesn't seem to care...but his digestive track does.  I'm trying to retrain Wolfgang (the cat) to stay out of Jessica's cage and foodbowl.

Also, she has been readily taking pets from my husband.  Not me!  But she likes pets from the hubby and tubbies from the kitties.  I was the one who did all of Jessi's med care, so I think she's having a prob getting over that.

OK where do I get a bunny clicker?????

"The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated." Ghandi


User is Offline BB
San Francisco Area
Forum Leader
8643 posts Send Private Message
3/10/2007 5:34 PM

I have the i-clicks because they are quieter than the regular square clickers for dogs.  Some bunnies are startled by loud clickers which can obviously hinder training.  

Here is the link to i clicker plus other clicker training products.  http://www.clickertraining.com/stor...=newiclick

Congrats on Jessica's great litterbox habits. That's great! 

 I don't know what more to tell you about the fact she uses the cats litterboxes that have clumping, powdery or clay litter.  (I am assuming this is what you mean when you say "scoopable"?  Let me know if I'm wrong.  But if that is the case then I just have to really bring it home how dangerous this is.   She gets it on her feet and fur, and licks it off.  This can accumlate in their system over time.  A bunny cannot vomit, and this stuff can cause a serious and fatal blockage.  

Unless you have some sort of grid over it, then it's not a safe for your Jessica.  And though I know you are trying to accomodate both, you may have to find another way if you want to keep Jessica out of harms way. 

Quote from HRS San Diego Chapter:

"Clay cat litter: Although inexpensive, clay litter can be dusty and may encourage digging in the litterbox. There are also more absorbent litters on the market. Also, if bunny should ingest this litter, it could be fatal.

DO NOT USE clumping cat litters with rabbits. This litter clumps when exposed to moisture, and it can't tell the difference between external and internal moisture. Rabbits tend to nibble on everything, and should they ingest clumping litter, they risk a potentially deadly intestinal blockage."

Here are some more links regarding this:

http://www.bestfriends.org/theanima...aining.pdf

http://www.geocities.com/Petsburgh/...html 

So I hope you will reconsider letting Jessica play in their litter. I would've felt terrible if I didn't emphasize how dangerous it is and then down the road you lose Jessica because didn't have the information you needed

Is there a way that you can fence off the litterboxes where the cats can jump over easily, but Jessica can't gain access? .

Regarding her affection for your husband and not as much for you right now.  Don't worry, she'll come around.  You can bribe  her with some healthy treats. Does she like rosemary, mint??  That way you can give her a bunch without worrying about giving her too much sugar.

http://www.rabbit.org/chapters/san-...mpare.html">


User is Offline wendyzski
Chicago, IL
1316 posts Send Private Message
3/11/2007 4:35 PM
Hmm - well, I use Feline Pine for my bun which is a cat litter made from processed pine.  They also have a scoopable version.  Maybe think about trying this in the kittyboxes, and then everyone can be safe.

User is Offline skunklionshow
City of Brotherly "Shove"
1247 posts Send Private Message
3/12/2007 12:33 PM

As soon as I posted about Jessica using the litterbox....she pee'ed right on the living room floor!!!!  I guess that's just my evil bunny for me LOL!

I will check out the scoopable pine litter.  I attempt to change my cats to more natural eco-friendly litters several years ago and they completely rebeled.  My fat beige tabby even rebels if you change the litterbox types---they are huge pussycat babies!

I will keep Jessi supervised and locked up until I get this litter issue resolved.  I would never want to hurt Jessica and I don't think the cats would either.  I'll keep you all posted.

"The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated." Ghandi

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