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Old 07-24-2017, 11:01 AM
Location: Round Rock, Texas
10,722 posts, read 10,114,434 times
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Thought I'd post this in the general pets forum because it deals with both of our pets. Many already know the backstory for each of our pets, but for those who don't know on June 22, we took in a rabbit who was nearly hit by a car. Someone liberated their pet (he was never claimed despite many efforts to locate an owner) and it nearly got killed. The good sam couldn't keep it because she had a menagerie of her own. This rabbit is unlike any rabbit that I've ever owned - he's very people oriented and kid friendly. He loves attention, people, and children. He has the run of a room and gets playtime twice daily, at least while school isn't in session. He really enjoys this interaction.

On July 14, we adopted an 11 year old rescue lab. Before the rabbit even came into our world, we had planned to get a family dog. We thought that the process would take several months because rescues thoroughly vet families prior to placing their dogs. As fate would have it, the lab was in a foster and had been in the foster for several months. He used to be blood donor for seven years before being retired and now found himself in a transient state for the past several months. We fell in love with him immediately and the process was sped up so that we had possession of the dog in a couple of weeks. so it's been a whirlwind of sorts.

This is the conundrum. He is a velcro dog, which we're used to. our deceased golden was the same way. he loves to be around you constantly and has a modicum of separation anxiety (whining) when his humans aren't in the room with him. He's still newish so we do spend a lot of time with him to ease his transition. Meanwhile we have a human-loving rabbit who also needs our attention and loves his playtime with the family. we try to juggle as best we can but unfortunately the rabbit's attention has diminished somewhat and he has clearly shown that he misses us. For obvious reasons we cannot keep the two together, even with the bunny caged.

What to do? how can we divide our time so that both animals get the attention equally?
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Old 07-24-2017, 02:35 PM
Location: Ohio
5,626 posts, read 5,030,224 times
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The dogs anxiety could be the shift in home... training and time is in order for that.

The bunny- well, they need time out and playing but you dont need to be velcro to them 24/7. We let ours down, interact with him and then give him time on his own.
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Old 07-24-2017, 03:14 PM
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Are you sure they can't co-exist under supervision?
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Old 07-25-2017, 06:58 AM
Location: Canada
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I'd suggest training to get the dog used to 'alone time'; i.e., not allowing him to be a velcro dog. A dog who is truly relaxed and feeling secure will not need to be near their human(s); it's healthier all around to have a dog who doesn't need to rely on that added security.

For your bunny...rabbits are extremely social animals. They will often languish if left alone for long periods, esp. if they are out of sight of the family when they are alone, and if a bunny is spending hours on his own because of time issues with the owners, then one thing I'd suggest (if you have the space, can afford it, and have the patience to do so) would be to get him a bunny companion. This way, if his time with his human friends must be limited, then a successful bonding with another rabbit will help him immensely in not becoming lonely. Mind you, sometimes rabbits who have bonded with another rabbit may wind up not wanting as much human company, so you would need to be diligent in giving him and the new rabbit as much attention as you can afford.

*Bunny bonding can sometimes be a challenge as well, but if done properly (and if both rabbits are spayed/neutered well ahead of time) then the chances of success can be quite high. I believe too, that bonding male/female goes much easier than male/male or female/female.
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