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Rabbits => Rabbit Care Corner => Topic started by: Jest on December 31, 2009, 10:47:05 PM

Title: Wild Rabbit Help!
Post by: Jest on December 31, 2009, 10:47:05 PM
An acquaintance had found a baby rabbit last year while mowing. He and his SO kept the rabbit. It was friendly as a baby, but when it got older I think the "cuteness" factor wore off and they didn't handle the rabbit or pay much attention to it. Right now, the rabbit has been kept in a cage in a basement with zero interaction from people except to feed. I'm picking the rabbit up tomorrow morning to get it out of the situation and into a better, healthier living environment. I have dealt with domesticated rabbits, but I have never had experience with a wild rabbit. I cannot find a sanctuary or anyone else to take the bun-bun, so right now he'll be living with me.

Can anyone give me some pointers on how to begin socialization? I have a wide array of animals (from horses to dogs/cats to other rodents) but am a bit leery of over stimulating the poor guy and stressing him out. He'll be left to acclimate accordingly once he's here. Right now I am doing frantic reading on all things rabbit. Any advice or suggestions are greatly appreciated!
Title: Re: Wild Rabbit Help!
Post by: ThaRatChick on December 31, 2009, 11:07:38 PM
Just do it slowly and and let him be socialized on his own time. If he doesn't want to come out of the cage, don't make him.

P.S. I would neuter him, male rabbits can get very hormonal.
Title: Re: Wild Rabbit Help!
Post by: Jest on December 31, 2009, 11:12:46 PM
Thank you. I haven't personally looked to see what exactly he is, they've just always called him a boy. He'll be housed in a quiet, non-threatening environment and I'm planning on slowly working on his comfort level, but I'll have to see exactly what that is.
Title: Re: Wild Rabbit Help!
Post by: ThaRatChick on December 31, 2009, 11:14:44 PM
Females should be spayed too, it prevents uterine cancer! Good luck with the lil bunny.
Title: Re: Wild Rabbit Help!
Post by: Jest on January 01, 2010, 06:04:46 PM
Thanks! I'm waiting for pictures to upload now.

Honestly, I think it's a girl. She's much, much more sociable than I was originally told, and apparently they had done some extensive handling as a youngster. All I did after picking her up was get her into a nicer temporary cage until I can get some NIC blocks and get one up, but I let her have some roam time in the room and she went to town checking out everything; she's easy to pet, not quite sure on being picked up, and was already licking my brother. She was out for maybe 5 minutes, but right now we're giving her the rest of the night to just chill and relax. 
Title: Re: Wild Rabbit Help!
Post by: ThaRatChick on January 01, 2010, 06:48:44 PM
Great news! Lovable bunnies are so fun  :)
Definitely want pics!

In my experience, rabbits are pretty easy to sex. Not as easy as rats, but pretty easy. If you are unsure, you can contact a rabbit friend/owner in your area, or ask the vet to take a quick look.
Title: Re: Wild Rabbit Help!
Post by: Jest on January 01, 2010, 08:22:11 PM
Here are some pictures. We've "rabbit proofed" the room and she'll be allowed to have to run of the room with her cage left open as a safe zone for her if she feels nervous.

(http://i100.photobucket.com/albums/m12/y0uXwish/Rabbit/IMG_0152.jpg)

(http://i100.photobucket.com/albums/m12/y0uXwish/Rabbit/IMG_0155.jpg)

(http://i100.photobucket.com/albums/m12/y0uXwish/Rabbit/IMG_0156.jpg)

(http://i100.photobucket.com/albums/m12/y0uXwish/Rabbit/IMG_0159.jpg)

This was the cage she's spent her entire life in:
(http://i100.photobucket.com/albums/m12/y0uXwish/Rabbit/IMG_0161.jpg)

And this is just the temporary one; right now she has the run of the room after we rabbit proofed it:
(http://i100.photobucket.com/albums/m12/y0uXwish/Rabbit/IMG_0162.jpg)

Title: Re: Wild Rabbit Help!
Post by: ThaRatChick on January 02, 2010, 06:45:31 PM
Looks like a nice bunny! She's litter trained, i'm guessing? Well... most rabbits naturally do that. Are you planning on making a new cage or buying one? I have seen some snazzy C&C bunny cages, and some modified dog crated that looked awesome!
Title: Re: Wild Rabbit Help!
Post by: DebsRats on January 03, 2010, 06:27:33 PM
She is so pretty. Glad you have her.
Title: Re: Wild Rabbit Help!
Post by: Jest on April 17, 2010, 11:12:16 PM
Hi all, I just figured I'd update for anyone who might still be interested in the rabbit; I know it's been a while!

The rabbit (whom I've been calling "BunBun") has been rehabbed and is getting a second chance out in the real world! I was able to locate and talk to a local wildlife sactuary who is going to be attempting to rehab her. If they cannot, she'll still be living a much better life than I could give her - a completely enclosed (mesh roof included) outdoor area. I don't know if she'll be kept with any other rabbits, but I'm so glad she's getting a second chance. She was getting daily time outside her cage (I had her in a ferret nation due to lack of any other cage; she actually really got the hang of the ramps!), but you could tell she just wasn't happy. I originally wanted to get her out of the situation she was in, and now she's in an even better one. Wahoo!

On the plus side, I don't have to worry about being fined anymore  :police: I'm in pennsylvania and it's illegal to "own" an eastern cottontail like she is.

Thanks to everyone who helped me with my questions and those who showed interested! I think I would like a domesticated rabbit in the future; the ones you all post are certainly my kind of squishy :wink5:
Title: Re: Wild Rabbit Help!
Post by: Jennicat on April 18, 2010, 08:41:32 AM
Thank you for doing the right thing by this bunny.  My wildlife rehab buddies tell me that wild rabbits don't ever really "tame down" like domestic rabbits do, and they get a ton of wild bunnies surrendered when they're around a year old and not that friendly anymore.  Big hugs!
Title: Re: Wild Rabbit Help!
Post by: ThaRatChick on April 18, 2010, 10:49:38 AM
Wonderful happy ending ;D
Title: Re: Wild Rabbit Help!
Post by: nancycccslp on April 18, 2010, 07:20:56 PM
Good for you!  You're doing the right thing!!!

There are a jillion domesticated bunnies looking for loving homes; the only bunnies who do NOT want a loving home are the wild ones.  Once they grow up, they "wild up."  But it's amazing how many people do not realize that; I had the Nassau County SPCA drop off 4 baby cottontails at my house today (I'm a licensed wildlife rehabber), and the agent asked me "Do you think they'll be able to go free, or do you need to keep them because they'll be tame?"  I ASSURED him that bunnies are released in a park where they can eat grass and do bunny things.  AND that they will never really be "tame" and I would make sure of it, handling them as little as possible.  He was relieved!

So thumbs up and a snap for you; thank you for keeping the bunny's needs foremost in your mind!