A Comprehensive Guide to Bonding Your New Bunnies
If you have clicked on this article, you presumably are already fully aware of the importance to both their physical and emotional health and well-being in keeping your bunnies in pairs.
Introducing two rabbits who have not previously known each other and are not part of the same litter can be challenging, but the rewards from knowing that your bunnies have a lifelong companion and buddy, as well as knowing how happy they are, are certainly worth it.
Here, for your information, is a comprehensive guide to bonding your new bunnies.
Ensure Both Bunnies Are Neutered
The importance of neutering your rabbits cannot be overstated, and what is more, a female rabbit who has not been neutered has an incredibly high risk of developing ovarian cancer. Additionally, two rabbits in the home are trouble and mischief enough, and like the cliched phrase, it does not take long for two rabbits to create a whole bunny army.
For male bunnies, it takes a clear seven weeks to become entirely sterile, so obviously, hold off introducing a male and a female until after this time.
Never Rush the Process
It would be worth noting at this point that if you have kindly adopted your bunny, or indeed both of your bunnies, from a rescue center or shelter, you should not only ask them for their advice and experience in terms of that particular bunny and bonding but also consult an experienced vet, such as those at a Magnolia veterinary clinic.
Start with having your bunnies in separate yet spacious pens side-by-side each other so that they cannot actually touch each other but so they can get to know each other’s smell and presence. Ideally, they should be able to lie next to each other but with a barrier between them, and there should always be a hiding place, such as a small wooden hut, so both rabbits can have their separate private time as they so desire.
Hopefully, as a responsible rabbit owner, you know that the only true way to ensure your bunnies are happy, emotionally stimulated, and physically exercised is to allow them to free roam in at least one room of your home full-time. Additionally, keeping bunny rabbits outside can force them to live a cold and depressing life.
Find a safe and clear space, perhaps in the living room, where you can start to allow your bunnies to explore the area together. Each of these initial visits with each other should always be supervised by someone who is bunny-savvy and understands rabbit behavior.
Positive Bonding Signs
Every bunny is unique, and therefore there is no set time for how long it takes for rabbits to bond with each other.
You can steadily increase the duration of these visits in a clear area and judge how they are getting along. There are four positive signs of correct and successful rabbit bonding, and it is strongly advisable that you do not let them roam free full-time until they are grooming each other, they lie down and sleep next to each other, they lick each other, and they behave entirely normally.