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BINKYBUNNY FORUMS > BEHAVIOR > Help! Misbehaving bunny
Last Post by LBJ10 at 7/30/2011 12:58 PM (4 Replies)
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User is Offline TriBun
314 posts Send Private Message
7/29/2011 9:09 AM

 I have a friend who adopted a two-year-old male Holland lop.  He's had him for about 4 months and is getting fed up.  The bunny is not friendly at all.  He avoids people and has some aggressive behaviors (growling and nipping).  He has torn up the carpet in one spot so bad that its bald. Because we don't know his history with his last owner, it is difficult to know what he needs.  He could have been mistreated or ignored...

I was wondering if any of you have fostered rabbits or know how to socialize them?  I feel bad because I know the bunny (Kevin) just needs some time and patience, but he's really difficult right now.  He was neutered about 2 weeks ago and seems to have gotten worse rather than better. What can I do?

We are really desperate.





User is Offline Sarita
18886 posts Send Private Message
7/29/2011 9:22 AM
Usually it takes a few months for those hormones to "die" down after a neuter so as far as that goes, give it time.

As for the have to remember that aggression is usually fear or frustration. Rabbits really don't have the capacity to be mean. It sounds like Kevin needs a routine to feel secure. I would advise not trying to grab and pet him and let him explore and relax and enjoy him in this way. He most likely will eventually allow you to pet him once he feels more secure.

I think you have to remember too that our idea of being social may not be the same idea that a rabbit has. Most times I've had to change my behavior and expectations in order to make friends with my rabbits. I'd love to hug and hold everyone of them, but they sure don't like's difficult not to, but in the end, they seem to be more content and relax just being around me more than anything else.

User is Offline LoveChaCha
Rabbit Warren
6655 posts Send Private Message
7/29/2011 9:27 AM
To have no expectations of rabbits. They will be who they are. I have had to make changes. I lay on the ground and do my own thing, and my bunny is naturally curious. I fell asleep on the carpet in the living room, and when I woke up, she was flopped right next to me sleeping as well.

The hormones are still pretty wacky right now, and it will take time for him to chill out.

Rabbits are social, but it may take a while for them to trust it. They are prey animals. I put myself in their shoes and see it from their point of view.

User is Offline Lani
305 posts Send Private Message
7/29/2011 7:01 PM
My best advice is open the door to the buns cage and then lay on the floor and ignore the bunny. Let him come out on his own and explore. And even if he comes up to you, don't reach out to pet him or anything. Just lay there. You can even put a healthy treat near you for him to find on his own. I know I wasn't used to this "hands off" approach when I got my bunny but it is really a great way for them to learn that you are not going to hurt him and he shouldn't be scared. You have to establish trust and that takes lots of time and allowing the bun to do things at his pace and on his schedule. If you try to force petting or being picked up or anything like that, you will put that trust in jeopardy.

User is Offline LBJ10
Bunny Name Master
Forum Leader
12588 posts Send Private Message
7/30/2011 12:58 PM
I agree with what the others said. Also a tip for a carpet thing. The best solution is to simple place something heavy over the spot they are digging at. They eventually lose interest.
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BINKYBUNNY FORUMS > BEHAVIOR > Help! Misbehaving bunny

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