Contrary to previous belief, we now know that rabbits are extremely sociable animals and should be housed with at least one other bunny. So, if you are thinking of getting a pet rabbit, you should think about getting at least two. Equally, if you own a bunny who lives on their own, now you have read this, you should start considering a mate!
Being on their own can affect their behaviour and have a negative impact on their health.
The best pairing is a male and female- both neutered of course to prevent unwanted pregnancies! A brother and sister are easier to begin with as they are less likely to fight.
Neutering has other benefits including reducing aggression and behavioural problems. It is highly important that female rabbits are neutered as unneutered females have an 80% chance of developing cancer of the uterus by the age of 5. Male rabbits can be neutered at around 12 weeks old. Females rabbits must be a little older at around 16 weeks.
Rabbits should not be kept with guinea pigs. Rabbits carry a bacteria which doesn’t cause symptoms for them but can cause respiratory issues for guinea pigs.
Introductions between new rabbits should be done slowly as rabbits can be aggressive to each other if they must share a home right away. To start, keep the rabbits in separate homes and allow them access to a large run with mesh separating them. This allows them to get used to each other’s scent and company, without being able to fight. When both rabbits become relaxed in each other’s company remove the mesh divider and allow them to share a space for short periods of time. After a few weeks of successful interactions, you can then allow them to live together.