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Anna
Anna, Pet Expert/Biologist
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 11138
Experience:  40 yrs.: herps, pocket pets, rabbits, poultry, dogs, horses. Biology degree. Vet assistant.
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I have a problem with my bunny. do you think you could help

Customer Question

Hi i have a problem with my bunny. do you think you could help me
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Pet
Expert:  Anna replied 1 year ago.

Hello,

I apologize that no one has responded to your question sooner. Different experts come online at various times. I just came online and saw your question. My name is ***** ***** I’m a biologist with over 40 years of experience raising and showing rabbits.

At this point in her life, Maya needs to be in a cage. That's the only way you will tame her and get her over her fears. It sound slike she has simply been released in your house. To a young rabbit, that is a huge place, and possibly a dangerous one. In nature, rabbits are a prey species. Something bigger is always trying to eat them. That means they spend a lot of time hiding and running away. Maya is simply showing normal behavior for a prey animal. Someday she may enjoy running around the whole house, but for now she would be much better in her own little den (cage).

Begin by talking quietly to her while she's in her cage. After several days of that, put your hand in the cage and let her sniff it. You can offer her a bite of a treat, like a piece of apple. (Don't use iceberg lettuce. It has no nutrition in it and it can cause diarrhea. Romaine lettuce is all right.) Try stroking her back gently. If that doesn't scare her, continue to do only that for several days. If even that much frightens her, just hold your hand in the cage for awhile. The next day, try again to pet her. When she'll let you stroke her back, slowly move your hand underneath her as if you're going to pick her up, but don't actually lift her. When she doesn't get scared when you do that, you're ready to try to pick her up.

When you lift her, make sure you support both the front and back parts of her body. The first time you pick her up, don't hold onto her for a long time. Just gently set her back down.

This method will take patience. You'll probably need to spend several days on each step, but if you work at it slowly, your rabbit should become tame. When she comes happily hopping up to you in her cage, she's ready to spend some time running around. But, start with just a few minutes at a time. Gradually build up to more time.

I recommend that arbbit never be allowed to run loose in the house when no one is there to supervise. There are too many things that can happen. People come home to find their rabbit paralyzed after a fall from furniture. They will chew electrical cords and be electrocuted. They eat blankets, wooden furniture legs, and other objects, which cause intestinal blockages. They will happily eat mouse poison. They seem to be constantly finding new ways to get into trouble.

If you have more questions, let me know in a REPLY. I hope Maya will soon be your friend.

Anna

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