Sunday, January 15, 2012

Bunny Training a One Year Old

Well...Storm is much older than that in bunny years, but he still has hormones raging like crazy. Even though he was very carefully treated when he was a baby bunny, he was timid and not very trusting.  I think the hardest thing for him was to be separated from his mother.  He really didn't like that, but the end of the following week he could have impregnated his mother and sisters, and I couldn't let that happen!

Just over a year later, with lots of training and patience he has finally decided that we are his 'family', and we will not pick him up unless we absolutely have to.

I have had to watch him and learn his behaviour as well, because it is so different from the way Charcoal was.

For instance:
From the start Charcoal was a very friendly natured bunny and absolutely adored being patted.
He had a very relaxed nature, and was extremely easy to train.  A liking for chocolate was an added bonus.  It made it easy to reward him for good behaviour.

Storm is a very wary bunny. He is still friendly, but very timid.
He doesn't like chocolate (probably a good thing!), or carrots, or anything sweet.  He does like some lettuce but mainly loves his bunny food...and that's it.  Being out in the garden is actually beneficial to him.  He has been munching on other things he wouldn't normally have, and has decided he likes some things that are growing out there that he is allowed to eat.  Hooray!

Anyway, I have been letting him out in the back garden every day this week without a leash so I can monitor him, and watch and get to know his bunny behaviour, and this is what I have learned:-

 When Storm lies down like this, he is really asking for a pat.  A LONG pat!

 So to teach him that humans are friends and not predators, I sat down with him and patted him.  And patted him.  And patted him.

 How much does that bunny love his head scratched!

 So much he was dribbling.  LOL!

 LOTS of dribble!

 And then it gets funny.  He gets up to clean my 'hand oil' off his fur, kind of the same way after I have cuddled him I get rid of his bunny fur off me.

More pats please!
How could you not love this face :D

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