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My dog doesn't quite like his new friend, a rabbit T_T

Rm88
April 19th, 2009, 08:10 PM
I have a 10 years old poodle. He's the cutest dog ever, and I love him to death ^^ But today, after 10 years, I decided to get a new pet, a little rabbit. The guys at the pet shop told me it wouldn't matter, but my dog is acting really curious. He's barking at the rabbit, and I fear he could hurt him T_T He's safe in his cage, but I'd like to be able to let him walk around sometimes, without my dog trying to eat him.

What should I do? I'm trying to be affective with my dog, so he doesn't feel he's being replaced... but will it be too hard? I really want to keep my new pet (it was not cheap at all >_<), but I want my beloved dog to be happy.

Thanks in advance!

luckypenny
April 19th, 2009, 08:20 PM
Can you keep your rabbit in another room and let him out without your dog present?

I don't know if after 10 years, your dog would be able to get used to him in close proximity :shrug:.

I know for sure with 2 of our dogs, they'd think I brought home supper :rolleyes:.

Rm88
April 19th, 2009, 08:24 PM
^ That's what I fear... maybe he wants to eat my rabbit @_@ Do you think I can work this out? I mean, he'll eventually get used to it, right? I don't mind if they can't be together, but I want both guys to be happy ~_~

rainbow
April 19th, 2009, 08:25 PM
You are going to have to keep them separated for awhile. If you have a couple of old towels, etc then let each of your pets sleep on them for a day or two then swap them so they can get used to each other's scent.

Introductions after that will have do be done gradually.

luckypenny
April 19th, 2009, 08:36 PM
Rainbow's advice is what I'd try. I have 2 very high prey drive dogs so I can't assume that your pup would be the same :o. I'm sure they can both be happy, just don't force them upon each other.

Rm88
April 19th, 2009, 09:22 PM
That's what I'll try... my rabbit (Yuki) looks definitely scared, so I'm letting him walk on my bed ^^ He looks much better now. I had to close the door so my dog (Pupi) can't attack him or anything. I always sleep with Pupi, and that will not change... I guess Yuki will have to sleep in my brother's room until they get along. Pupi is such a spoiled dog @_@

EDIT: He's calm now, but he won't stop staring at Yuki... and growling sometimes. I guess the novelty will eventually wear off. I'm concerned about Yuki, but I guess this is even harder for Pupi... I just want him to be happy T_T

Promethean
April 20th, 2009, 01:07 PM
I have a 10 years old poodle. He's the cutest dog ever, and I love him to death ^^ But today, after 10 years, I decided to get a new pet, a little rabbit. The guys at the pet shop told me it wouldn't matter, but my dog is acting really curious. He's barking at the rabbit, and I fear he could hurt him T_T He's safe in his cage, but I'd like to be able to let him walk around sometimes, without my dog trying to eat him.

What should I do? I'm trying to be affective with my dog, so he doesn't feel he's being replaced... but will it be too hard? I really want to keep my new pet (it was not cheap at all >_<), but I want my beloved dog to be happy.

Thanks in advance!

I think that rabbits and dogs make a bad combination, specially if your dog shows any predatory behavior towards small animals, birds, etc. He would be better off with a cat. I've found that most cats, even when declawed, can take care of themselves.

Once when I was away from home and the dogs were with relatives, the little girls thought the dogs and rabbit would enjoy the outdoors. I came back home just in time to fish part of the bunny's skull out of the mouth.

Rm88
April 20th, 2009, 10:29 PM
That's awful T_T I'm about to throw the towel in, I want my dog to be happy, and he just won't stop staring at the rabbit while shaking, sometimes growling or barking. It's ridiculous, because this is just the second day, but this looks like a lot of work...

SnowDancer
April 21st, 2009, 11:14 AM
I think you will have a very difficult time. It would be hard enough if the bunny had been there first - especially once a new dog reaches puberty - but to bring a rabbit into a home where there is already a dog could lead to disaster - particularly if your dog has any prey instinct, never mind high. We have had many cats and dogs live together happily - one cat was the leader of the canine group - before the arrival of our first alpha mini Dachshund - and then they became co-bosses. But a bunny is prey to my dog for sure as are any animals that don't look like cats. We saw a lady walking 2 ferrets the other day and my dog assumed the look he gets when he sees squirrels and birds - and so did other dogs who unfortunately were not on-leash - my guy always is. The lady had to pick up her ferrets and run. I have seen people with ferrets on leashes at PetSmart when there for the famous Nature's Miracle and it is not something I would recommend. I hope things work out but I suspect that you might need to find a new home for your bunny. And while our 22 lb. Eskimo has a high prey drive - I would be more afraid of what our former 10 lb. Dachshunds would do if they had access to a bunny.

BenMax
April 21st, 2009, 11:52 AM
Firstly, rabbits are a food source for many dogs regardless of the breed.

You can however teach an old dog new tricks but it will take two people to reinforce the behaviour of the dog and the safety of the rabbit. This is not something that can be rectified in one day.

Is your poodle a toy, standard or royal?

Mat&Murph
April 21st, 2009, 01:40 PM
I think bunny should be seperated from the poodle. It is natural for a dog to chase a bunny. My boys would definalty chase a rabbit.

BenMax
April 21st, 2009, 01:44 PM
I think bunny should be seperated from the poodle. It is natural for a dog to chase a bunny. My boys would definalty chase a rabbit.

Absolutely must be separated. However, depending on the temperment of this dog this can be managed but perhaps never unattended. Again, rabbits are a food source for canines.

Rm88
April 25th, 2009, 01:44 AM
It's been almost a week, and my situation is much, much better. My dog lost interest in the rabbit, he only gets hyper when we try to get the rabbit out of his cage. He doesn't mind if we close the door so the rabbit can walk around, and well, he's just never aggressive ^^ My dog is the sweetest dog ever, it looks like he was just curious after all.

http://img412.imageshack.us/img412/2118/dibujoxns.png

Blackdog22
April 25th, 2009, 09:56 AM
I hardly think the situation is hopeless, you may just have to put in some hard work.
How is your dogs obedience? If it's good-excellent you can simply put him in a stay command when handling the bunny. I would put him in a stay, get bunny out of cage, hold bunny for a few seconds, put back in cage, then release the dog and reward (but do not build up too much excitement, ei do not jump up and down squealing 'good boy'). Do this a few times a day, increasing the time your dog has to stay(don't feel bad about making him stay for over 10 minutes, I often make my dogs hold stays for 30 minutes at a time) You could also teach the "out" command, but this will take more time then building on the stay command. Out means stop whatever you are doing and wait for further instruction. This is especially helpfull if you have a dog who likes to pursue fast furry things.

I think you will do just fine. I have 2 very high prey drive dogs and I have successfully trained one of them to "play nice" with little furries, namely cats. If she is not given the command, she figures everything is fair game but once she is told to play nice, she contains herself and has even gone so far as to kiss and clean little kittens. I would never leave her unattended, nor do I suggest you leave your pup with bunny. But I was able to manage the behavior to the point where supervised visits were 100% okay. Now if I could just train the other dog I would be just fine, lol! He is a bit too young for kitties up close and personal, we have much to work on with him. BUT when he is mature I fully intend on teaching him the exact same thing. I feel uncomfortable exposing him to cats until his out is flawless.

Maybe speak to a dog trainer, or brush up on your OB. And remember, it's not hopeless! Good luck with Mr.Buns!

animaladvocate
May 3rd, 2009, 08:07 PM
Do you have a command for Yuki like 'gentle' or 'quiet' -I introduce my rabbits to dogs by holding the rabbit and having someone hold the dog and give them the command gentle or quiet. Another thing that works is laying the dog down on it's side-if you have that at command so he'll stay still then bring the rabbit to him.

Your dog is probably thinking your teasing him with an awesome squeaky toy he can't have-let him see you with the bunny so he knows it's a family pet not a toy.

Here's a great article on introducing rabbits to dogs. http://www.rabbit.org/journal/1/dogs.html