Deadly Combination? Rabbits With Other Pets

One of the most common questions that I get asked by the public when I am at educational events is whether rabbits will get along with their other pets, such as dogs and cats. My answer is always the same: It depends on the dog or cat, not the rabbit. Rabbits are vegans and get along with all creatures.

This is a tough subject to write about at this moment, because a tragic thing happened last weekend that made me contemplate this issue. A friend who was fostering some rabbits that he rescued accidentally had his dogs get into the area that he was keeping the bunnies and they were killed. I am absolutely certain that no one was more horrified or saddened than this family.

They had with all good intentions saved these bunnies (mother and daughter) from a miserable existence in a petting zoo. They were not spayed and so were most likely going to suffer from tumors or cancer before they were four years old. After bringing them home, the family discovered that the daughter had a terrible malocclusion of her front teeth, so they had two surgeries to correct that problem. Both girls were also spayed, at considerable expense for this family.

Someone working at their home, left a door open and the tragedy occurred. While thinking about this sad story, I thought that this certainly happens hundreds of times a day across America. It is not because anyone intentional wishes for this to happen, but rather it is purely an accident. In my mind, this begs the question, “Should you even have a pet rabbit, if you have another animal who will potentially harm him?”

star and buns 067

Result of a predator attacking a pet bunny.

This is a tough question, but from the rabbit’s point of view in every case, I am sure you can say that the answer is probably a NO. I think it is one thing, if you have a dog or cat that you feel will learn to live in harmony with the bunny. I have seen this in many families and it worked for many years in mine. Millions of people have pet dogs, cats and bunnies living together happily.

Where I think the problem arises is when you have a critter whom you know will harm your rabbit and decide that you can keep them separate and protected from each other for long term. First off, I want to say that the rabbit virtually always comes out the loser, if for a single second you fail. I have heard this story about an accidental death of a bunny too many times to count. If it is so common, then why does it happen so often?

Maybe the problem is that we underestimate the prey drive of our other predator pets, like dogs and cats and overestimate our bunny’s ability to survive being bitten, even once by one of them. A dog does not even have to be trying to harm a rabbit to kill him. Most of the time when a dog hurts a bunny, he is trying to play with him.

A rabbit darting quickly across the room or yard sets off an instinct in many dogs that is just so intense that they cannot resist it. Before you can say two words, the deed is done.

Is this preventable? Possibly, but it is almost inevitable, even if you are very careful. You may prevent this deadly interaction for years, but it only takes a second of negligence and nature takes it course. In the case of my friend, it was a worker who was not used to constantly having to think about protecting the rabbits when the disaster happened. It could have happened to anyone, and IT DOES. It happens all the time.

Do you see that look in his eyes?

Do you see that look in his eyes?

This is why I have decided that it is truly not a good idea to have a pet rabbit and a dog or cat with a prey drive. No matter how well that you think you can do at keeping the bunny safe and happy, he is not going to be happy unless he gets time to run and play. If he is running and playing where a dangerous dog has the potential to attack him, then we have a problem.

One needs to honestly assess whether your dog/cat is one who would TRULY be a good companion for a bunny. If you have an older dog who likes to cuddle with a cat buddy and licks him, then you might have a dog who can get along with a rabbit. If you have a dog who chases squirrels or cats in the park, who wants to play rough with you all the time and is very puppy-like or hyperactive, he probably should not live anywhere near a house bunny. This takes an honest unselfish approach on the matter.

Why sentence a rabbit to a horrible violent death by choosing to bring one home because he is “just so cute”, knowing that your pet rottweiler would love to make him lunch, the first chance he gets. In my opinion, is just selfish and wrong-headed.

It can get a lot trickier when you are actually trying to make this choice in the moment and thinking about adopting or rescuing a bun. The answer is usually not just so black and white. I feel that when making this decision that you need to be very objective and remember that having a pet house rabbit is simply not for everyone. Forcing the issue and taking on a bunny, when in your heart you know you shouldn’t, is just a disaster waiting to happen. Maybe you need to wait until your situation changes at a later part of your life.

As I said, this is a tough issue and I am sure a lot of folks will disagree or have their own perspective on this issue. Please share your thoughts. What do you think?

The Bunny Guy

47 thoughts on “Deadly Combination? Rabbits With Other Pets

  1. I wholeheartedly agree with you!!! People really need to THINK before bringing a bun home, no matter how sweet it looks! I have two rescue bunnies that I just spent $400.00 having them neutered. They have their own (seperate) spaces to live in and they are kept in their own bedroom. Now, they also have a playpen in our living room, but are only there in the evenings when WE are there to supervise the dogs. Now, the funny thing at our house, our dogs are petrified of the bunnies! They are pretty big, they are white New Zealands. So, the boys (Howard and Archie) get our full attention! BTW, they like Family Feud, its their favorite show! My buns were two little girls’ Easter bunnies and were hanging inside (gasp!) a chicken coop!!!!! The girls’ father gave them to me and told me to “just turn them out at your barn”. NOT HARDLY!! They are approximately 6 months old and I now use them in my Pet Therapy program I have at our local nursing home. (I use dogs, llamas, goats, sheep, a miniature cow, a miniature horse & donkey, etc). The residents LOVE them!

    I would like to take this moment and tell you your book is the very best one on the market for keeping “pet” rabbits! So well written and full of wonderful advice!

    • Thank you, Gina for the wonderful compliment and I am so glad that you liked my book so much. I am sure that your bunnies are treated royally at your house.

      It is awesome that you are involved in Pet Therapy. It is one of the most rewarding things that I do with my two buns, Star and Snickers. I think they actually look forward to the attention.

      I would love it if you could post your comment on Amazon as a review of my book. It would reach tens of thousands of people and hopefully convince them to read my book instead of one of the ones that show them how to build a hutch in the back yard.

      Thanks again and big hugs to Howie and Archie!
      The Bunny Guy

      • I agree with your article too! I was searching wondering if my cat is normal for bring so gentle and she’s been raised up as a service animal with one special command ‘NO HITTING!’ She had fully embraced the concept when my husband and I brought Lily home and less than a week later they greet each other and groom each other’s fur while I cleanup the cage. I think also it’s not just about the animals but also about the owner what do they expose their animals to? Are they a gentle leader or a drill sergeant? Our home is pretty harmonious and as per so AL experience I think a post should be done on the effects on animals from owners behaviors. Great article Bunny Guy!!!

    • I know this is an older article, but the chance to adopt a rabbit has recently arisen. The only problem is I have a cat. He is about 5 years old, lazy, but he is also very big. Not just “chubs” but just the bone structure. I’ve own pets my whole life and he is by far the most loving. When we had just gotten a puppy, instead of batting at him like the other cat (They were both under a year old at this time) he would cuddle and sleep wit him! Spaz (that’s his name, I can assure you that he isn’t a spas anymore) does however mess with the fish tank, relentlessly. This concerns me. Ever so often he does stare at birds put the window. He ignores squirrels (which I’d say are more similar to rabbits than fish or birds). Do you think my local shelter would allow me to have Spaz meet a bunny while he is on his leash and harness? And if so would that meeting be a good way to determine how they would work together? I also saw that you said cats typically wait to make their move, if I were to adopt the rabbit, should I have him be cage free only when I’m home? Thanks so much!

      • You must trust your instincts and gut. There are many cats that are very friendly and get along fine with rabbits. I have had two, personally. I know it can be done, but then I read the stories on Facebook of the people who have their pet bunny killed by their cat. I think that there were probably signs beforehand that they either misread or ignored, but you cannot know that for sure. I know that a formerly feral cat who killed to survive, may revert back to that lifestyle without warning, but a gentle cat who does not go out and kill lizards and mice may not be a problem. It is the predator instinct that you should be concerned with. I would make sure that they could not get together without your supervision for at least six months. Watch out for jealousy issues. I have had cats get quite jealous before. They would wait till I wasn’t looking to try and get at the other kitty for infringing on their space. Cats can be so sneaky. haha Good Luck! I am sure you will do the right thing.

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  3. I’m so mad because my dog is such a dick. He’s overprotective and violent at times. And of course he adapted to my six month old sister after some serious discipline but I feel like this just won’t work. I think I’ll just have to await the day I move away from home to get another pet…and even then my mum wants me to take him. I love him, he’s a dashchund (did I spell that right) and according to their background…it ain’t going to work. We once found a young female pit bull who was very playful and wanted to play with him. He attacked her an she she was twice his size. He fights with everything…it really pisses me off FML

      • I know, I know. D: he’s cold hearted. I know that sounds a bit melodramatic but he really is. I think he needs to get fixed and suddenly go deaf,blind and dumb to get anywhere near a welcoming animal. Waiting until I live alone is obviously the best choice.

  4. OMG!!!! i feel so bad for the rabbits! also i totally agree with you! i have a rabbit and we were thinking to also get a cat. is that alright?

    • Hi
      Rabbits will get along with cats and dogs but it depends on them, not the rabbit. IF your cat is jealous or aggressive, he may not get along with a bunny. Dogs need to be mellow and I always tell folks that if your dog chases squirrels and cats, then he will most certainly chase a bun.
      Cats are a little trickier, because in my experience cats will often wait until you are not around to torment your bunny. You will have to be clever to detect and solve any issues that might develop.
      When I have had cats, dogs and bunnies all together, the rabbit actually ended up being the dominant critter, but that is not always the case. The important thing to remember is that your bunny is always very vulnerable to any kind of attack or rough play by a dog or kitty. I especially worry about a bunny’s very exposed eyes and cat scratches, but actually the most delicate part of a rabbit is his back. A bite on the back by even a medium size dog can result in death or permanent paralysis in a pet rabbit.
      This means that you will need to truthfully assess your dog or kitty as to whether they would be able to peacefully co-exist with a rabbit. Only you know the answer to the question, but I say that it is better to err on the side of safety when making your decision, for the sake of the bunny (since no cat or dog has ever been seriously hurt by a rabbit).

  5. Hi, This may not be the correct place for my question but I can’t find a forum that addresses my issue. I was given two bunnies and one just happened to be pregnant. Big surprise! I immediately had the father neutered and plan on spaying the mom very soon due to the cancer issues etc. We now have four offspring, 10 weeks, who I believe are two male and two female and are waiting for them to mature ( will separate very soon for certainty) to have them all fixed and plan to keep them all. They are lionheads. The father is a dwarf. It seems that the babies are quite close and already show signs of bonding into pairs ie. the two females together and the two males???
    I have done quite a bit of checking around as to what to do with the young and have been completely disappointed about what might happen to them and that is why we (hubby and I) have decided to keep them but I will not just house them in a large cage and let that be that. I want them all to live together as a family but the parents don’t seem to want the young or like them. They chase them down and seem very aggressive towards them and I have to immediately take them away. I have kept the babies in the cage in the same room as the parents who have free run of the room but remove the babies to another room for a few hours each day to exercise before putting them back in the cage. It’s only lately that I’ve tried letting them all be free together while I’m with them.What’s going on? Will this change? Am I totally up the creek? I really could cry. And by the way, I’ve been overwhelmed by the amount of work this is but I’ve got a system worked out and I’m just so happy with them all. It’s expensive, exhausting, worrying, time-consuming, dirty, messy, but I’m enjoying every minute of it and I can’t believe how smart, funny and fascinating they are.
    Any advice you can give me would be greatly appreciated.
    Thank you. Janet

    • Hi Janet
      You are so correct about rabbits being a whole lot of work. They are expensive high maintenance pets, that is for sure. My wife has been saying this for years and people laugh, but I think they are way more work than dogs or cats.
      Unspayed or neutered rabbits will do a lot of fighting and display a lot of aggression towards others, even family. The key is getting them fixed by a rabbit specialist vet and then waiting four or five weeks after that to start trying to bond some of them. They may not all bond together, but you might be able to form small groups. Twosomes are the easiest and you might just end up with three pairs. That is what we have, now.
      The increase in the amount of work going from four to six bunnies, was huge. We spend three or more hours a day preparing food, cleaning litter boxes and cleaning their fur up from around the house. Then you have socializing and playtime to consider. It is a full time job, just like having kids.
      Dwarf rabbits are known for being stubborn and difficult at times. They are the most grumpy breed I know of and we all joke about the “dwarf-itude” that they have. Ironically, I find lionheads to be the second most difficult breed. So, be aware that this could be a contributing factor to your case.
      You might try reading my book for some tricks to make your life a bit easier, such as using a grate in their litter box. You will develop your own routines and secrets to simplify your tasks. Lurk around sites like and make some Facebook bunny friends who will gladly share their tips on how to make things easier, too.
      You did not mention how old these babies were, but since they are all having arguments, I am assuming that they are three or four months old, at least. The fighting usually never starts until they are sexually mature and ready for spay and neuter. Therefore, the sooner you do this the better in the long run it will be for getting them back together again (at least some of them).
      Just be sure to find and use a rabbit specialist vet. This is critical. If you do not, there is a very high chance of losing a bunny during the procedure. If you need help locating a rabbit specialist vet, please let me know.
      The Bunny Guy

  6. I have a dog, two cats and a dwarf/ lion head bunny mix that I let have free rein of the house. I used to keep the bunny in the cage but slowly started letting him out longer. He is just like the cats jumping on everything, even the back of the couch like the cats do lol. I brought him home as a baby and now he is about 3 or 4 months old. I believe his new behaviour with the cats is him trying to be dominate. Will neutering him stop this? He won’t leave my male cat alone lately almost like a bully. Thank you for your time

    • I do not ever recommend having a pet rabbit without first having them spayed/neutered. Once this bunny starts spraying pee all around the house, you will most certainly agree with me. His dominant behavior is common and while having him neutered may lessen that, there is a good chance it will persist afterwards. I have had very dominant bunnies who were in charge of my cats and small dogs and they were spayed/neutered.
      Be sure to seek out a rabbit specialist vet to do the neuter. You want a person who does four or five a week of these, not four or five a year. Rabbits can die from being neutered and so you want an expert doing the job, not someone practicing on their second or third time doing it. If you need help finding a rabbit vet in your area, let me know.

  7. I hope I get a notification if you reply.

    I found your page while googling ways to keep dogs and rabbits separate.

    I have indoor bunnies who live in a hutch+pen combo in their own room. I recently adopted two rural dogs. I haven’t introduced them yet as they’re still learning their commands but I’ve been training them to see the room as a no-go room.
    I also installed a baby barrier in the door, as a back-up to the physical door and their pen. I’ll be putting a sign on the door “Keep door closed, bunnies live here” for guests.

    Currently the dogs are indoor-only and I’ve been keeping two closed doors between them and the bunnies at all times. Once the dogs have settled they will be outdoor when no-one home, indoor/outdoor when someone is home.

    The previous house I had a housemate with a large dog and had a similar set up of pen-physical door and own room for the bunnies. Their dog was a cat and small animal chaser so I didn’t trust her at all but we made it.

    These two I’m still learning their personalities and training them in “leave it” and “come”.

    Nethertheless, I worry because they are new dogs who’s personality I am still learning.

    Do you have barrier suggestions? After the pen that is their cage, a physical door and the baby barrier – I am at a loss for other fail safes to keep the animals separate. I could do more space but I don’t fancy locking the bunnies up in the garage away from people, they are very friendly and deserve to have their own room.

    • Sorry that I cannot offer any suggestions. I have never had any cats or dogs who would harm any of my bunnies. I feel that if that is a possible scenario that it is not very fair for the bunnies because in every instance it is they who will suffer is a mistake is made. I have never heard of a person or dog suffering injury from a failure to keep them separated. It is always the poor bunnies whom pay the price. The true issue is that it is a disaster waiting to happen and you cannot expect everyone in the house to never make a mistake EVER in the next ten years. I feel that is an unrealistic expectation. No one is perfect and what you are attempting to do is figure out a perfect system. I contend that any barrier or system is only as perfect as the people using them. I would certainly consider a double barrier system in order to try and head off any lapse in closing a barrier by having a second barrier in place, but even that system can occasionally fail if someone unfamiliar with the system does not secure it. This is what happened to my friend whose new maid accidentally left a door open. Sorry I did not have any better recommendations.

  8. Hi, Ive just discovered this website and i hope you can help me. We purchased a dwarf bunny in September 2014, the bunny was 5 months old, ive never kept rabbits before but because it was so cold i’ve keep him in the house. We have a cat who is so placid she has never bothered with him so i’ve been letting him out in the garden, however i’ve just let him out today and i heard an awful sound, i ran out and i saw a stray cat in the garden that i didn’t recognize, i screamed at the cat who run off, and found little Coco hiding behind a pot, ive brought him in the house and checked him all over i cant find any injures, but his breathing quite hard, ive partially covered his cage and ive put the heating on, im not sure what to do next. I dont want to stress him out further and take to the vet. Can you give any further advice please.

    • It is only a matter of time before this bunny is hurt or killed by a predator if you leave him outside. Even in a cage, he is at risk and is not truly a pet. A farm rabbit lives outside in a cage and a pet rabbit lives indoors like a dog or cat. Are you planning on eating this bunny? If not, they I recommend that you learn how to care for him like a pet and that you do not treat him like a farm rabbit.
      We never let our pet rabbits play outside without us right there to supervise, the same way a parent would not let their two year old children play outside at the park own their own. They need constant and full time protection.
      Hawks, snakes, dogs, coyotes, wolves, eagles, cats, raccoons and many many other predators will eat your rabbit the first chance that they get. The only way to prevent that is to learn how to keep a bunny indoors. Of course, there are hundreds of other things that you must learn, but until you take this first important step, I am here to tell you that it is only a matter of time before this bunny suffers and dies. I have heard this exact story hundreds of times.
      There is info on this site on how to set up the abode area for a bunny. Bunny-proofing is important and once it has been done, the bunny can play in the bunny-proofed parts of the house, safely.

  9. I have two rabbits. One boy and one girl. They are so mean to each other. They get separate out time. The girl is a big bunny, and she likes to go up to his cage and steal his hay through the bars. When he is out, he likes to go to her cage and leave poop all around it. (Classic love) My girlfriend works at the humane society and occasionally brings home a dog for the holidays when the store is closed and we foster the dog for a few days and then take him back. One dog we had was a big black pit-bull. We introduced the dog to both rabbits while they were in their cages. The dog looked very happy like he wanted to play. The girl bunny looked like she didn’t care for him at all. The boy bunny however got so scared, that ran around in his cage bouncing off the walls because he couldn’t stop running. The thing that surprised me is the pit-bull ran out of the room and made a whining noise as if he was scared too. It was about the funniest thing I had ever seen. Needless to say the dog did not even try to go into that room again. We left the door open and everything and he would get close to the door and look in, but would not dare step foot into the room.

    • Unless your two rabbits are bonded, they will never be allowed to run free at the same time. It sounds like you have found that out, already.
      Your boy bunny thrashing around inside his cage because of the dog is at great risk of serious injury. The reason he is racing around is that he is in a total panic out of fear for his life.
      Often, we see these rabbits break their own necks or backs doing this, since that is their most vulnerable area. I would not purposely encourage this, if I were you. The bunny can actually die of fright, due to their cardiovascular system being susceptible to cardiac arrest and stroke.
      Dogs who want to play with rabbits often hurt them badly. So it was good that you did not let them actually come into contact with each other. If a dog that is playing and chasing a bunny actually catches him, it always ends badly for the bunny.
      Bouncing around inside a cage is not something good for the boy because the injury that occurs may not become apparent for several days, but I have seen broken backs and pelvis’ from this behavior.

  10. Hi, I have had a pet rabbit since she was a baby, so almost 4 yrs now. She has run of the house and is very attached to me. She follows me around everywhere and tries to groom me like I’m a bunny. I really want to get a small dog one about the same size as her like around 6 or 7 lbs. I am aware of all the risks and harm the puppy could do to the bunny so that’s not my concern. I am more worried that my bunny will hate me for getting another pet, or become stressed and not eat or ever come out of her house. Do you think her feelings will be hurt and she’ll act mean towards me if I get a dog? She seems very lonely and bored when I’m not home and bored even when I am. I’m sure she’ll get along fine with a dog after a few days I took her to the pet store and had her meet the puppy and they were neutral with each other. I’m just worried about how she’ll act towards me.

    • If this bunny is as devoted to you as you describe, I am certain that there will be dramatic reactions to another pet, especially a predator, in the house. It might not be that negative, but I am not sure why you have not chosen to get your bunny girl another bunny, as a friend.
      Of course, you would need to bond them together and that is easiest when she picks her own mate, but that would solve the problem of her being bored and lonely.
      Rabbits are social animals and do best when there are other bunnies to interact with. My solo girl who I had for over four years as a single, has become a new bunny since bonding her with a young boy. She is ten times more active and it appears to have knocked five years off her age. She used to just lay around and now she does chase games and plays with her new friend.
      She shunned having a partner before, so what made it easy for me to bond her was that she chose the boy she liked.
      It is critical that she is spayed and that any boy you try and bond her with has been neutered for at least one month, but I would recommend a bunny friend, not a dog. A small dog can easily hurt a bunny and so they would never be able to be left alone for the first six or so months, until you could be sure that nothing would happen.
      In my experience, it is NEVER the puppy who gets hurt in these situations. It is always the poor bunny who suffers. Not once have I ever heard of a puppy being sent to the vet office from a vicious bunny bite, but the number of broken legs, backs and gashes I have heard about are too numerous to count.

  11. Cats leave my rabbit alone but the rabbit is so curious about them. They usually just jump into the window or back of couch to get away but I have to put the rabbit in the cage when they want to eat cause rabbit wants cat food. Its not hard, the rabbit likes running up into the cage and to the hay next to the litter box but then scratches at the door/ramp when done eating. Not too long though. Either throws cardboard toys or towel around then lay’s down. When the cats are done and rabbit is calm I open the door. Sometimes rabbit comes back out or just stays lying down. Is this okay? Is the rabbit happy. Likes to run around the house a lot and leap. Likes to plop down on side which I read means they’re cozy. Also comes up & links my hands and feet to be pet. Knows lettuce, basil, celery tops & other treats comes out of fridge & begs. Don’t feed every time cause I don’t want it begging all the time. So does everything sound okay? Doesn’t seem to mind being kept in cage at night. Want to allow my cats free roam at night and rabbit roams to places like the cat litter room I can’t keep closed off from the cats. Nice cage. Carpet bottom. Have a bag rabbit likes to lay on and toys. Plenty of hay & water and keeps pee/poo in litter box.

    • Cats and rabbits can get along just fine. I have found that often the bunnies will dominate the cats. Just be careful to not let the bunny inside the cat box. Cat litter can cause a bunny’s lungs to become filled with the clay from the clumping cat litter. It forms a mud inside their lungs so it is not good to let them in there. Also, cat food can make them have a sick tummy. I would definitely discourage that. I have heard of bunnies eating dog and cat food. I think it is just part of them bonding together, but I know that the stuff in cat and dog foods are not good for rabbits.

  12. People, LISTEN to this man, he knows what he’s talking about !!
    Don’t take chances.
    You have to live with the memory of what happens for the rest of your life.

    Remember that the people who have horror stories NEVER THOUGHT
    it would happen to them.

    Thank you for all that you do Bunny Guy,
    We love you!

  13. My son recently brought home a male bunny that continually annoys my old female Staffie – she is old and arthritic and it’s not in her nature to snap or bite children, dogs or in this case bunnies. They both have freedom to move around inside and out but I was hopeful of some advice on how to prevent the bunny from constantly bothering my dog.

    • I think it would be wise to keep them apart. In my experience bunnies can be quite dominant with other species and I have had buns bully my cat and dog, too. The problem here is if the dog ever got annoyed enough, he could severely injure the bunny. For that reason, I would advise that you prevent this from ever happening by not letting them be together. It could go on forever without anything bad happening, but it sounds like you are worried about the bunny hurting the dog, when I truly doubt that will ever really happen. Instead, it is always the rabbit who gets hurt or killed in an altercation or misunderstanding. I used to think that you could just let them get used to each other and they would learn not to hurt the bunny, but one hard snap from your dog would surely hurt your rabbit badly.

  14. When I moved in with my fiance, one of the big questions was if his cat and my bunny would get along. She is a black Rex-mix. Looks a lot like your black bunny-just with floppy ears. She has rabbitude for ten and is very territorial, even spayed. But she is also very loving and playful when she wants to be. His cat, luckily, is a very laid back schmoozer but he is wary of Tinkle. I don’t think he “gets her” and even after 1 1/2 years of living together, he is still trying to figure out what kind of odd hopping creature he is dealing with. The look on his face when she first started chewing on one of his beloved cardboard boxes was priceless. They accept each others presence-but they do not really interact. Tinkle often tries to play with him but she does it in a way that seems very aggressive to Charlie and sometimes she gets a quick pad with his paw before he runs away. They both roam around the apartment freely but each of them has their own area they prefer. So far, so good. I am not super concerned about leaving them alone, mostly because he never showed any aggressive or predatory behavior towards her. Plus, she is almost his size and intimidates him with her behavior. Would the cat have a different personality, there would be no way I would leave them unsupervised, but this works. I would not introduce another cat or dog into the family though as long as Tinkle is alive.

    • I have had very great relationships with cats and bunnies, but cats are hunters. If they have that instinct, we cannot control it. I have been lucky and many others have too and never had a problem with their bunnies and cats together. That said, I had a Facebook friend last month who posted a story about a cat who killed his pet rabbit by ripping out his throat. They had lived together for five months without a problem, so it makes me have to rethink my advice that after six months they are going to be OK together. What I have to say again is that I have NEVER heard of a cat or dog being killed or even sent to the vet by a pet rabbit. I could post many many hundreds of stories about pet bunnies who were destroyed by dogs and cats.

  15. My boy friend recently adopted a kitten which is now a year old and is an indoor out door cat. I believe him to be fairly aggressive he bought in a 1/2 mouse last night. He also acquired a bunny not to long ago. Not to familiar with types of bunnies but this one is sweet and friendly it is male, I am increasingly worried of the cats behavior . He seems playful yet jealous. I’m concerned for the bunnies safety. I really need to read more on the subject but wanted some advice as the bunnie lives downstairs and the cat has free rain of the house in and out. Is there some bunnie house that can keep him safe? Any advice would be appreciated.
    Thank you,
    Rachel R

    • A Facebook friend of mine came home and found that a feral cat that he had adopted five months before had ripped out the throat of his pet bunny. The cat and rabbit had lived together for five months and he thought that they were OK together until that incident. You are playing with fire any time you have predators and prey animals living together. Some dogs and cats do just fine with pet rabbits, but when it goes bad, it never ends up hurting the cat or dog. It is always the bunny that ends up at the vet or dead. So you will want to think a lot about this situation and allow your intuition to rule here. If you feel that the cat is aggressive towards the bunny, then I am sure you are right. Make sure that they are kept separate and that your bunny is kept very safe when you are not around. Be aware that some cats will torment their prey, so if your bunny is in a cage with the cat outside, he can be frightened to death by aggressive behaviors. Imagine a predator sitting on top of your cage threatening to eat you. That would frighten me to death for sure.

  16. We have a 3 year old male and a 3 year old female rabbit. The male was neutered at 6 months. The bunnies are bonded and get along very well. We just got my son a small chihuahua puppy. The puppy is curious about the rabbits. The puppy and female seem to just ignore each other. The male rabbit is constantly attacking and jumping on the puppy. We never intend to leave them together unsupervised, but would like to figure out a way for the male bunny to stop attacking the puppy. It’s only been 5 days and I know it will take time. Do you have any suggestions for helping the rabbit get used to the dog and not be so aggressive?

    • I suppose you can try using bonding techniques with them together. This boy is dominant and will probably be dominant over this puppy. The problem will arise when the puppy decides that he does not want the boy bunny to be dominant over him. To the boy bun, the dog is just another bunny who is in his territory. For rabbits, dominance is not as much about being the boss as being the boss of a particular territory. Also, this dominance does not extend past the territory that they are used to being in, so if they were to suddenly be in a different house or place, they could suddenly fight because it is a new territory. Dominance would have to be established over that new place. What I think will happen is that this boy bunny will need to teach the dog that he is boss. If the dog accepts that, then things will probably go well. I have had a small teacup terrier that was submissive to a medium size boy bunny, so I have experienced this. If the dog does not accept the bunny being the boss, then it may not work out because dominant rabbits rarely back off (in my experience) from aggressors. So I believe that they will fight, if the dog does not become submissive to this boy.

  17. Hello, Mr. Bunny Guy! I was hoping I could ask your advice on integrating other animals into my loving bunny home.

    I have a male/female bonded pair of Netherland Dwarves. They’re very sweet and happy together, but I have wanted both a dog and a cat for a long time, and when my partner and I move into a new home in a few months we would like to get one of each.

    In your opinion, what is the best way to do this? Get both animals very young so that they grow up with the bunnies and get used to them easily, rather than adapting as adults? Should we get both at the same time, or introduce one and then the other? I have my heart set on a dachshund, as that’s the type of dog I grew up with and know well, but I do know that their instinct is to kill small animals like rabbits. But if I get one as a puppy will he grow up seeing the rabbits as peers and not as prey? Any insight would be SO much appreciated. I love my rabbits dearly, but I am ready for a cat and a dog and just want to go about this the right way.


    • My problem with experimenting with your theory is if it goes wrong, guess who is the one who will pay the price? It is never the dog. The only one who gets hurt, maimed or killed is the bunny. Dauchshunds being hunting dogs and rabbits do not mix, in my opinion.

  18. I read this with sadness & sorrow in my heart as I lost my bun today to injuries sustained from my cat – they’d been separated for 3 years, but yes, one tragic mistake of a door left unlocked is all it took.
    I certainly could not consider another bun in my home – although my 3 dogs lived peacefully with my bun Winnie & they could free-range together, my cat is simply a cat – who has instincts & prey drive & in the end the injuries were becoming complicated & prognosis long & short term uncertain & worrying.
    I do hope that people understand the instincts of their animals & the fragility of rabbits. I don’t blame my cat.
    I am heartbroken, we did all we could in terms of vet care & home nursing this week.
    It’s one of the biggest tragedies I’ve encountered in my home & hope that there are no risks being taken by people with buns & other species in their homes. Thankyou

  19. I know that this may seem like a strange question but I cannot find the answer anywhere. My rabbit (Dobby) loves my dog Payson. Dobby is constantly trying to play with Payson by running really fast around her and jumping up in the air and running into her Following her around everywhere she goes But my dog literally for the most part ignores dobby. She may sniff at his face every once in a while but that’s about it. Now don’t get me wrong Payson is an extremely active dog she loves to run around she loves to play but she will not play with Dobby I don’t understand why. I know that rabbits can get lonely if they don’t have companionship and my goal is to have my Payson groom and play with Dobby. Do you think that it could be she just doesn’t like him or just isn’t interested? Maybe she’s jealous of him because whenever I give him attention she wants attention too…idk lol any advice would be great.

    • I think you should be happy that your dog tolerates your bunny and it is probably better that they do not play together. Often when rabbits get hurt by dogs, they are just playing because a rabbit is so much more fragile than a dog. It is not intentional that they hurt them because they are playing, but it happens more than you know.

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