To bond rabbits that fight, you must get them accustomed to being near each other. Keep them in separate enclosures that are placed next to each other. The rabbits should meet in neutral territory for 10-15 minutes each day. They will eventually stop fighting and learn to live together.
Every rabbit owner wants their rabbits to bond, so it can be very intimidating when they are fighting.
Don’t panic, though. Fighting between rabbits is very common, especially if a new rabbit is brought into the home. It is entirely natural, and you can still bond them! It is important to be patient, though.
What You'll Learn
How To Bond Two Rabbits That Fight
Keep Their Enclosures Close
First and foremost, keep their enclosures close. Not close enough where they can reach each other, but close enough where they get used to being in each other’s presence. Make sure they can see each other and smell each other so they grow accustomed to one another.
Introduce Them in Neutral Territory
After they’ve spent time in their enclosures, introduce a new space where neither rabbit has been before. This will prevent them from becoming territorial. Make it a smaller space with plenty of distractions.
Watch Their Behavior
Pet and show love to them both and watch for any signs that they are about to become aggressive. If you see these signs, separate them immediately.
If you see the rabbits sleeping in each other’s company, grooming each other, playing, or even just comfortably doing their own thing with the other rabbit present, these are great signs that the rabbits are making progress and getting along.
Doing this every day for ten or fifteen minutes will allow the rabbits to grow accustomed to each other. There is no telling how long it will take, but if you are patient and watch them closely, they will eventually feel comfortable with each other and form a bond.
Further Detail On The Three Steps
Those three steps are the “bird’s eye view” of how to get two rabbits to bond. Below we will go into more detail on the three steps.
Tips When Creating a Neutral Space
A neutral space should be a smaller area, but not so small that they feel confined with one another. It should be a place neither rabbit has been to before or spent a lot of time in because if one has, they might feel territorial and lash out.
Put out some things for the rabbits to do, like tunnels or hay, but make sure to have two of everything! If you only have one tunnel, one of the rabbits might become territorial and try to guard it, and the other rabbit might fight over it.
What to Look Out For
The most important part of these interactions is you! You must keep a close eye on them. If they look like they are becoming aggressive, separate them. Make sure to pet both of them to keep them comfortable. Also, if you feel inclined, you could keep a spray bottle with water and spray them if they try to fight.
At first, you might only have them out for a few minutes before they fight and you have to separate them. That is normal! The key to this method is to allow them to grow comfortable with each other over time and eventually form a bond. Slowly, they will be able to stay out longer, and soon the fighting will cease as that bond forms.
Some warning signs that they are about to fight or become aggressive include chasing, moving their tail up and down, or even attacking out of nowhere.
If you see them begin to fight, separate them! If the rabbits hurt each other in the neutral space, they are less likely to feel comfortable and safe the next time they meet.
Some signs they are getting along include sniffing each other, grooming each other, playing together, sleeping next to each other, or even just ignoring each other, which means they feel safe doing their own thing with the other rabbit around.
These are great signs to look out for and show the rabbits are beginning to bond. Sometimes, playing can look like fighting.
Watch for direct attacks on vulnerable areas or intense biting, which means they are being aggressive. On the other hand, playing is usually small nips and jumping, which is not aggressive and a good sign that the rabbits are getting along.
What NOT To Do
It is very important not to leave them alone together! If the rabbits are still fighting, they could hurt each other, which will only increase their fighting.
Also, do not give them only one of something in their new space because they could fight over it.
Try not to keep their enclosures too close. You wouldn’t want the rabbits to be able to hurt each other through their enclosures.
Why Rabbits Sometimes Fight
It is normal for rabbits to fight. Depending on whether the rabbits are spayed or neutered, it could be a sign of dominance, protection, or mating.
Rabbits need time to bond and get used to each other, which is why this method is recommended. It allows them to do so in a new, safe, and monitored environment.
Trust Takes Time
Having rabbits that fight can be very intimidating, but by allowing them the space and time to grow accustomed to each other, they can form bonds rooted in trust and comfort. It takes patience and a lot of attention, but it is worth it in the end.
The main steps are to keep their enclosures close and watch them interact in a new space every day. It is very simple but very effective. Just keep in mind the detail in each step, like having two of everything out, separating them at any sign of aggression, not keeping their enclosures too close, and of course, making sure you do not leave them alone together until they are bonding.
Doing this daily will allow the rabbits to get used to each other in a safe environment. It’s important to stay consistent and be patient. Soon, your fighting rabbits will bond.