Anonymous asked in PetsOther - Pets · 4 weeks ago

How can I bond with my rabbit? ?

Hi! I have a 3 months old mini rabbit. She lives in a cage and in the garden. She is in the cage for the nights. Than she is in the garden all day free. I do pick her up couple of times a day trying to get her used to me. I would pet her and she enjoys it. Then I would let her go again to enjoy the day. She also has a company-another female rabbit which is her mother actually. They get along very well and spend most of the time together. I would like to earn my rabbits trust. I think she doesnt trust me because Im the partypooper. I am the one who ends her freedom on the end of the day when I literally have to chase her around in the garden-to catch her and put her in the cage. It is very rare that she would come to me, if I approach her she would run away.. She only doesnt run away when Im giving her treats but even that if she sees Im getting too close she would run away. I would like her to trust me and come whrn shes called. Also I would bring her in the house to get familiar with the place and she even has a toilet corner In my room and food and water.

3 Answers

  • 3 weeks ago

    You first need to decide whether you will keep her indoors or outdoors. It isn't good to bring them back and forth between indoors and out because they have a difficult time regulating their body temperature (unless it is during a time of year when the indoors and outdoors temperatures are about the same).

    If you want to keep them outdoors and want to let them run in the garden during the day, then continuing to chase them to get them back in their hutch is not going to work -- not if you want to bond with her. You have trained her to associate you with being locked back up. The only way to change that is to use a different method to get her back in. 

    One possibility is to limit their garden roaming to a smaller area around the hutch by using exercise pens. The pens can create an area around the hutch. Then, when it is time to go back in, you simply "walk" the exercise pen in closer and closer to the hutch until she has no where to go but back in the hutch. For bunny, SHE is the one deciding to hop in the cage so it isn't seen by her as you forcing her in. (It is a trick that is used by indoor bunny owners as well)

    Another possibility is to build/create a secure run area that you can go inside to spend time with her. This secure area would mean she would not need to be locked up in the hutch at night because the whole exercise area will be secure. I've attached a few photos of examples.

    The other option is to house them indoors permanently. For info on indoor housing (which is how I've housed all of my rabbits) take a peek at my website:

    Attachment image
  • 4 weeks ago

    This is going to take time and work on your part. You need to start budgeting your time so that you can spend 30 minutes or so every evening out in the garden before you normally bring the rabbits in for the night. You'll need to be patient and sit quietly, don't stalk the rabbits or chase them. Just watch them. Bring some fresh fruit treats with you and put them down near you. Leave them alone and let them enjoy them at first, only speak softly to them as they eat. Work up to pets and scratching their ears, This is the garden portion of the bonding. Once you bring them in to their cages, hopefully not after too much of a chase, you should spend another 10 minutes petting them and speaking softly to them. Stroking the spot in-between their eyes is what my bunnies really like. You should spend an extra few minutes doing this with them when you take them outside for the day. It's a rabbit's instinct to run away from large animals, chasing them only reinforces that behavior. My rabbits respond to clicking noises I make with my tongue. I had heard mother rabbits make similar sounds when they gather their kits to nurse, and noticed I immediately got the rabbit's attention when I made the sound myself, adults, juniors, even kits in the nesting box. This is a process and probably won't happen overnight. Be patient.

  • ?
    Lv 7
    4 weeks ago

    You may not be able to. You cant bond with every animal. Rabbits are timid by nature, and they've got millions of years of evolution telling them they should run from anything bigger than them. You may be able to build up trust over the lifetime of the animal simply by being a part of their daily routine, but it would not be at all out of character for her to never be entirely comfortable around you

Still have questions? Get answers by asking now.