Saturday, April 10, 2010

Saturday Bunny Dating Update

Amelia shows how mellow a California Bun can be.

We had a 3 p.m. appointment with a professional rabbit bonder in the bonding room at the Rabbit Haven Adoption show. However on returning home from Ba Gua I found that BF had, in an uncharacteristic showing of thoughtfulness, to rabbits fed them lots of greens stalks, cut from his lunch vegs. On any other day this would have been absolutely fine. On this day it removed any leverage I might have with Tyler and Sydney. Satiated, they could not be coaxed, cajoled or bribed into the carrier. The upside of having lots of rabbits is that that was fine. Amelia and Harriet were perfectly happy to go for an outing. OK, that's not quite true, but they both allowed me to insert them into their carriers. We listened to some bunny friendly jazzy atmospheric selections on KZSC, 88.1 fm during the car ride. At Pet Pals a highly proficient young woman in a bunny print smock took care of nail trims, gland cleaning and brushing. The Rabbit Haven offers this service on a donation basis. I like it because if my bunnies don't like it they won't blame it on me directly. Amelia was very well behaved, better than the last time and it was remarked how relaxed she was. Good girl! Harriet, too, was well behaved.

Keep your bunnies glands clean or have someone else do it.

The bonding started with a ride around the store in a comfortably padded shopping cart with a professional Bonder at our side. We took frequent breaks to put their heads side by side and cross pet so that their scents mingle and they are comforted by the closeness and feel of the other. Our Bonder kept a constant stream of bonding advice and helpful hints and suggestions. We also did floor time in a pen. Here Amelia showed her confidence by checking everything out, while Harriet preferred to crawl into and stay in my lap. It is not for nothing that one of Amelia's names is "Miss Check It Out". I learned a lot, it is different having first hand tutorials as opposed to reading something. Some key things are the side by side smoosh and cross pet; shorter more frequent sessions are best; don't worry about nips that's how bunnies communicate; girls are harder to bond than boys; end on a good note, even if you have to make it happen with a smoosh and cross pet; treats only when the bunnies in bonding are together; start to trade spaces so they can mingle smells, this can also be started by trading towels, blankies, toys. The Bonder didn't like my gloves, because of the feel to the bunny and suggested a kitchen splatter screen instead. The Bonder also thought it would be better to bond the girls and then bring in the Spots one at a time for sessions. There is another show in two weeks, so we can use the room then and have another tutorial. Tyler and Sydney seemed just the teeniest bit put out at not being at the Bunneh Partay. They will be undergoing reeducation for better carrier manners which will involve being fed only the the carrier......

14 comments:

Paula said...

It's such a relief when you find your guru. The kids are really coming along and I love the splatter screen idea.

mum of critters said...

I wish they all could be california buns...

Very cool! So true about the hands on too - I've learned so much at the boot camp for the dogs where the trainer actually teaches us techniques and answers questions - seeing it and hearing it really make a difference!

Great job!

bunnygirl said...

A lot seems to go into this. I hope the girls learn to be best friends soon!

DKM said...

It must be a nail trim kinda day. I trimmed the bun's nails tonight.

Crafty Green Poet said...

wonderful photo of Amelia! So glad you've found a professional bunny bonder (didn't know there was such a thing!) and good to read it seems to be going well with the girls.

d. moll, l.ac. said...

CGP-well, I imagine this was not her full time job, and many of the wonderful Rabbit Haven volunteers have similar skills and experience, still as far as I was concerned she was a professional.
DKM-Yes, I think it was on the universal bun calendar.
BG-the Bonder seemed to think they were semi-bonded already and that Harriet was bonded to me (awwww....).
MOC-I never thought of gloves just because I like to feel until I got bit...I think too it is good to have another person's take on the bunnies, they have more in their experience to compare to.
P- ha, ha, Guru, I didn't tell about the part where one sits in Lotus position with hand in each buns third eye and chants "OMMMMM ONNNE BUUUUN" ?

Glenna said...

Interesting! Loved the pics also, especially of Amelia looking all resigned and relaxed. Awwww that Harriet ran to you for comfort. And about the girls having a harder time of friends-making: I think you have a bun version of "Mean Girls."

Lisa said...

Although with bonding it never seems like it's going well until it's 100% completed, I think bonding between Amelia and Harriet seems like it's going pretty darn well.

I completely agree, about having personal advice and Q&A with an actual person being so important in the bonding process. If I didn't have the opportunity to e-mail Sogna's (infinitely patient) foster mom about 100x a day with millions of questions I don't know if I would have made it. I would have paid hundreds just for the emotional support she gave me, and reassurance that what terrified me was perfectly normal.

Junkstylediva said...

Amelia and Harriet are so lucky to have you as their mom!

Rabbits' Guy said...

Once again it is left to the distaff side of things to point out the veiled threat of Re-education. It was SO clear who is going to be re-educated, and about what!

The bonding, trimming, cleaning venture sounded like a blast! I ought to haul a rabbit around the Safeway store in a shopping cart sometime.

Glenna said...

RG, I think rabbits prefer going to Whole Foods. Fresher.

Michelle May said...

Gland cleaning??? Ok... new to me, have never heard of that for buns, only for dogs that seem to make a stinky fish smell as they drag their butts across the floors. Hmmmm...
Yet again...the benefits of living in a big city where you have bunny gurus. Here....people would say "let's add some bread'in and have'em for dinn'r. I just don't fit in. hee,hee,hee.

M.Kate said...

So cute! I love both pictures..and I want that bunny shirt!

Coherent said...

What do you mean by "smoosh and cross pet"? I'm going to be getting a companion for my little bunny soon and I need all the bonding tips I can get. Please email at coherent805 at yahoo.com... Thanks!