You are here:

Rabbits/Introducing two new rabbits to my current rabbit. Worries and concerns.

Advertisement


Question
Hello, I have a few questions and concerns about getting 2 new rabbits and introducing them to my current rabbit.

My current rabbit is a 2 year old neutered male who previously had very little contact with humans or other pets. He belonged to my sister but she cared very little for him so I've taken it upon myself to care for him and I've fallen in love with him. I have a very large pen set up for him and he's very sweet and loves to be petted.

I want to get him some companions for when I'm unable to have him out with me. I was thinking on getting a Rhinelander and a Holland Lop.
My Current rabbit, Bun Bun loves to play with our dogs and our cat but I'm always afraid they will hurt him. He's very social but I'm a bit paranoid.

With the two bunnies I want, I want 1 female and 1 male. Not for breeding just to experiance having a female bunny. But I want to know if Bun Bun will attempt at breeding with the female, even if he is neutered. Will the new male and Bun Bun also fight? I plan on getting both the new bunnies fixed.

I also wanted to know if age will effect anything. I want the new bunnies to be babies so I can get that speical bond with them, but will that cause Bun Bun to bully them? Or could the new bunnies possibly gang up on Bun Bun?

Thanks for taking the time to read, feel free to ask questions about them or anything that might help you to help me. I don't want to put my rabbit or new rabbits in danger.

Answer
Dear Ashley,

Although you'd like to get specific bunnies, I would urge you to let Bun Bun do the picking, since he's the one who has to live with his new pals.  Rabbits are very choosy about their companions, *especially* when those companions are other rabbits.  If you bring new bunnies home, bloodshed is as likely as cuddling.  Probably MORE likely.

Before you embark on this, please see the articles on bonding here:

http://search.atomz.com/search/?sp-a=00062824-sp00000000&sp-q=bonding

Truly the best way to get pals for your bunny is to contact your local rabbit rescuer:

http://www.rabbit.org/chapters

and set up some "blind dates" with the rescues there and see who gets along best.  Once you find compatible bunnies, further bonding must still be done with care.  The rescuer can help you with all the secrets. This is not something to be done casually, and it can be a real challenge.  Setting yourself up for failure by bringing home a "surprise" bunny for Bun Bun is just not a great idea.  

I'd recommend the blind date option.  It is just a safer way to go.

Hope this helps!

Dana

Rabbits

All Answers


Answers by Expert:


Ask Experts

Volunteer


Dana Krempels, Ph.D.

Expertise

I've lived with companion rabbits for more than 35 years, and consider them members of my family. I can answer any questions about the biology and health of rabbits, from the commonplace to the unusual. But please note:

RULE #1:
THE INTERNET IS NOT THE PLACE TO SEEK HELP IN AN EMERGENCY.

...it is an EMERGENCY.

Find a rabbit vet at www.rabbit.org/vet for immediate help, and don't risk your bunny's life by spending time asking questions online! If you can't get in touch with your vet, read these Emergency Sick Bunny Instructions.

If you have found a wild baby rabbit, please read these EMERGENCY INSTRUCTIONS FOR WILD BABY RABBITS and then use this link to FIND A LOCAL WILDLIFE REHABILITATOR who can give you the right advice.


RULE #2:
Help me help you! Please make your subject line informative if you have an urgent question. then LET ME KNOW IN THE SUBJECT LINE so I can give your question highest priority over non-urgent questions. If you don't do this, then I can't guarantee timely assistance!

For all the best, most accurate rabbit health, care and behavior information, visit The House Rabbit Society.

Experience

I have been rescuing and rehabilitating domestic and wild rabbits for about 30 years. I have written articles for many rabbit rescue publications, as well as for the veterinary journal, Exotic DVM. I own EtherBun, the internet's largest listserve dedicated to health, care, and behavior of domestic rabbits.

Organizations
Houserabbit Adoption, Rescue, and Education, Inc. (H.A.R.E., Inc.) president National House Rabbit Society (Board member)

Publications
Exotic DVM
Warren Peace (Journal of the House Rabbit Society of Miami)
Various newsletters of the House Rabbit Society, nationwide

Education/Credentials
Ph.D - Biology
B.S. - Biology
B.A. - English

Awards and Honors
Lightspan Academic Excellence Award for web site on rabbit health and biology
(http://www.bio.miami.edu/hare)

©2016 About.com. All rights reserved.