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Rabbits/trouble in bonded foursome - rabbits.


hello I have a four "bonded" rabbits. I say "bonded" because 10 percent of the time they get along but the other 90 they pick on the younger girl.. I usually find her hair all over the cage when I come home from the I guess fighting that went on. At what point do I say enough is enough and separate them? I want her to be and live a happy life.

Dear Carla,

You say you find hair all over the *cage*.  What size cage is it for four rabbits?  It would have to be enormous to properly house four and allow room for a subordinate rabbit to escape the bullying of the other three.  They are just exhibiting normal rabbit social behavior--but apparently don't have quite enough room to make it work for all of them.

It's not fair to the Omega Rabbit to let this continue without giving her safe refuge.  In many group warrens, there is a bunny who's at the bottom of the social hierarchy.  That bunny can usually avoid injury just by running away when the dominant rabbits feel like pulling rank.  But if there is no room to run away, that subordinate bunny's life will become torture.

Please increase the size of their enclosure to *at least* 12' x 12', if not allow them all free roam of the house, and provide plenty of boxes and other places where the subordinate rabbit can hide.  That way, subordinate bunny can escape and take refuge and be able to show proper submissive behavior that will keep her from getting beaten up.  If the cage is too small, she can't get away, the others will react as if she's not showing proper "respect" by fleeing far enough, and the rest is history.

For tips on how to make your bunnies happy house rabbits, please see:

I hope this helps.



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Dana Krempels, Ph.D.


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:

Find a rabbit vet at 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.


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.

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

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

Ph.D - Biology
B.S. - Biology
B.A. - English

Awards and Honors
Lightspan Academic Excellence Award for web site on rabbit health and biology

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