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Bunny Petiquette

Have you recently adopted a bunny? If so, you’ve got a very cute little pet … and perhaps a somewhat temperamental one. Don’t let Floppy’s cute face fool you: bunnies can be quite stubborn, and more than a little bossy! Here, a Cameron Park, CA vet discusses bunny petiquette.

Basics

Is Floppy acting up? If so, have her thoroughly examined by a vet, to rule out potential health problems. Your vet may recommend your bunny be spayed or neutered, if this hasn’t been done already. As with other pets, spaying and neutering can help stop aggressive and/or territorial behavior, leaving you with a calmer pet.

Correcting Bad Behavior

Never punish Floppy for doing something wrong. We know, it can be very frustrating to realize that your adorable pet chewed up your new shoes, but our animal companions only act according to their needs and instincts. Negative reinforcement often backfires, because pets often don’t really understand that they did something wrong. To reprimand Floppy, stomp your foot, clap your hands, or blow in her face if you catch her in the act of misbehaving. Otherwise, focus on rewarding your furry pal for behaving properly by giving her treats, toys, and praise for being good.

Keeping Your Pet Happy

Inappropriate chewing is a common issue with bunnies. After all, these guys are basically adorable little chewing machines with a penchant for mischief. Make sure Floppy has plenty of safe, suitable chew toys. Bunnyproofing is also a must!

Bunny Rules

Rabbits can get territorial, and are also easily frightened. For instance, if you reach into Floppy’s cage too suddenly, you may startle her, which may cause her to bite. Do plenty of research on bunny behavior!

Training

Bunnies can learn good manners, though training does take time. If you see Floppy chewing on something she shouldn’t, clap your hands, and then offer her something more appropriate. Reward her with treats and praise for doing well. Be consistent and patient, and don’t give up!

Tips

If Floppy is irritated with you, she may turn her back on you and/or ignore you. She may get annoyed if you cut her playtime short, or rearrange her cage. However, if your pet bites or scratches, ask your vet for professional guidance.

Please contact us, your Cameron Park, CA pet hospital, with any questions or concerns about your bunny’s health or care. We’re here to help!

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