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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-05-2004, 07:28 AM Thread Starter
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Unhappy Newbie needs rabbit help

Hi there,

First of all I'll introduce myself....I'm Holly proud mummy to my 16 month old daughter and our new rabbit (yet to be named).

We inherited our outdoor rabbit 4 days ago from friends of friends along with his hutch and run. He's a year and a half old. I'm not sure what breed he is.

Anyway.....he seems to be a bit shellshocked from the change of owner...he's eating his dry food fine, eating a few veggies and drinking fine too. His previous owners said he is fine to handle and does not bite....he'll let me pick him up and stroke him but he seems frightened and won't take any food from me or eat food inside the house. I've had him inside twice now.....only when my daughter is in bed.

I was wondering what the best way is to familiarise him with me and the house?
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-05-2004, 01:05 PM
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Rabbits generally don't take well to change. I've heard that you can stress those guys out just by moving their food bowl around or suddenly changing their diet. So a drastic change like this would probably worry your rabbit for a while. But don't worry, I'm sure it will warm up soon enough.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-06-2004, 04:38 AM
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www.rabbit.org is a great site for new rabbit owners!! they will answer most of your questions there...anymore that you have just ask us!!! Welcome to pt by the way!!!
If your bunny is eating and drinking then he is probably just a little bit confused and nervous. The best way to get him used to you all is to have him around you guys a lot!!! Even if he is just in the house why you are going about your daily activities...he'll get used to you. If he is outside make sure his cage is mosquito proofed!

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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-06-2004, 09:35 AM
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-13-2004, 09:59 PM
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hi holly

I just wanted to add that as you are in the uk and it is getting pretty cold here right now please be careful about taking bunny indoors too often as you really want him used to being outdoors and the cold if you plan to keep him outdoors as otherwise he will not keep up his resistance to cold and it may well kill him. I have seen this happen before to bunnies and the owner thinks they are doing their best for the bun by taking him in when its cold and then putting him back out at bedtime and sadly then they cannot withstand the cold.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-14-2004, 06:37 AM
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Hi Holly,

You can check out http://www.arba.net and look under breed photos to find pictures of all the different rabbit breeds (so maybe you can figure out what yours is).

It's good to here that he is eating well. Is he eating any hay, by the way? Try introducing some timothy hay or oat hay into his diet (these hays are high in fiber and act as a roughage and aid in the prevention and treatment of GI stasis, which is an intestinal blockage). Timothy is better, but you can use other grass hays if you do no have it available to you. If he seems like he's under 6-months-old (you can ask a vet to help you with determining his approximate age), then you can feed him a handful of afalfa hay everyday (high in calcium and protein and promotes healthy bone growth, however, for older rabbits over 6 months, it can cause bladder and kidney problems).

Just give him more time to adjust. He's only known you four days, so its okay if he's a little jumpy still. To help encourage bonding between you guys, try these things:

1. Sit in the middle of the floor with him running around and just sit very still and let him come up to you (this may take a bit). When he does, don't make any sudden moves, but lut him sniff you.

2. Hold him for at least 5-10 mintues straight everyday (depending on the amount of free time you have). During the holding time, you can talk softly to him, stroke his nose, gently rock him and even play some soft classical music in the background (animals like that kind of music).

3. Get a small piece of a really yummy, strong smelling, irresistable food (for most rabbits, bananas fit this category.... it drives them NUTS). Sit on the floor and hold it out (blowing on it in the rabbits direction may help him smell it better if he doesn't seem to notice it). Chances are, your rabbit will run up to you and go for the banana. When he does, hold on tight to the piece of banan... do not let him take the whole thing and run off under the bed. Instead, hold on to it (this 'forces' him to stay next to you and eat it). If he doesn't like the banana, you can try it with some other fruits and veggies (run whatever food you chose by the group first if you aren't sure if rabbits are allow to have them).

One last thing, do you know if he is neutered? If he is an older, unneutered male (over 4-6 months), then his testicles should be *very* apparent. You may want to check with his old owner to see if they had him neutered. Neutering can help sweeten up a rabbits attitude. However, I suggest trying to bond with him first and give him a couple more days to settle in.

Good luck!
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-14-2004, 01:04 PM
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Hi Holly, the best thing to do with bunnies, is let them get to know their surroundings etc in their time.. Get them to come to you, to take a treat or be stroked.. Do you want your bunny to be a house bunny? My 2 are quite happy to be outside in their shed, but equally are happy to be in the house..
Here are some useful websites..
www.rodneyrabbit.co.uk Cute house bunny, who is on a webcam also has links to other websites..

www.rabbit.org Uk house rabbits

www.rabbitwelfare.co.uk Rabbit welfare, and help for bunny owners..

Hope this helps, keep me informed of his progress..

Steph ~ Owned by 4 bunnies and 5 degus..


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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-14-2004, 01:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PURPLEBUNNY
Hi Holly, the best thing to do with bunnies, is let them get to know their surroundings etc in their time.. Get them to come to you, to take a treat or be stroked.. Do you want your bunny to be a house bunny? My 2 are quite happy to be outside in their shed, but equally are happy to be in the house..
Here are some useful websites..
www.rodneyrabbit.co.uk Cute house bunny, who is on a webcam also has links to other websites..

www.rabbit.org Uk house rabbits

www.rabbitwelfare.co.uk Rabbit welfare, and help for bunny owners..

Hope this helps, keep me informed of his progress..

Regarding the post up there, my 2 bunnies are on the Rodney rabbit website, click friends and under A is a pic of Amber and under J is a pic of Jasmine..Thought you would like to know!

Steph ~ Owned by 4 bunnies and 5 degus..


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dry food, food bowl, grass hay, house rabbit, house rabbits, neutered male, oat hay, timothy hay


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