Last Updated on January 18, 2023 by Admin
Introducing a new bunny to an existing one can be a tricky process. This is considering that rabbits are instinctively territorial animals and may show aggression towards a new rabbit trying to invade their personal space. Introducing two rabbits is a process that needs to be gradual with a lot of patience too. Below is a step-by-step guide on how to introduce a new rabbit to your existing bunny.
First and foremost, make sure that your rabbit living area is spacious enough to accommodate two bunnies. In other words, their living area should enable each bunny to move around and explore freely. Also make sure that each rabbit has a separate litter box, and toys as well as an eating and drinking spot. Lastly, also ensure that your new bunny’s space is free from hazards such as exposed electric cords or toxic plants. Preparation is key if you want to start the pairing process on the right foot.
The second step entails placing your new rabbit in quarantine for a couple of weeks before introducing it to your existing one. What this basically does is to ensure that your new bunny doesn’t transfer any potentially infectious diseases to your other rabbit. During this period, keep your new rabbit in a separate enclosure or room as you monitor their overall health and behavior.
iii) Gradual introduction
The third step entails introducing your new bunny to your existing one through a barrier. It typically allows your bunny to safely see, smell and interact with each other without physical contact. You can use a playpen or separate them by placing them in an enclosure that acts as a barrier. As the rabbits become more and more comfortable around each other, increase the amount of time they spend together. You can also add toys to encourage positive interaction and also help them bond. Look for any tell-tale signs of aggression or fear between the two bunnies and always separate them when necessary. Gradually introduce them again through the barrier until they learn to get along. Do this repeatedly until they learn to tolerate each other’s presence before proceeding to the next step.
iv) Interaction without barriers
Once your bunnies are comfortable around each other, remove the barriers and allow them to interact while you’re on the lookout. This can be in a playpen or controlled space while making sure that each bunny has its own personal space it can retreat to when need be. Do this repeatedly until your bunnies build a bond or at least, learn to coexist before letting them interact unsupervised.
Will my rabbit be happier when paired?
In most cases, two or more rabbits thrive from companionship when they’re tolerant of each other to the point of forming a bond. It basically depends on your rabbit’s temperament. Ideally, rabbits that are raised together from an early age have a high likelihood of making the happiest pair.
How long does it take to bond a rabbit pair?
Bonding a rabbit pair can take several weeks or months, depending on the type of bunny and how often they interact.
Can you introduce a baby rabbit to an older rabbit?
Yes, introducing a kitten to an older rabbit is easier than introducing two adult rabbits. Younger rabbits are essentially more open to forming new bonds and they also have less aggressive tendencies.
Introducing a new rabbit to your existing one needs a little bit of time and patience. In addition to following the above four-step introduction guide, always make sure that both rabbits are spayed or neutered. This essentially helps with taming unwanted aggression and territorial behavior.