Many people mistakenly believe that only dogs are traditionally subject to training, although almost any pet can successfully learn various tricks.
This article describes the principles of training rabbits, specific training algorithms, general points concerning education and games with these fluffy animals.
What breeds are amenable to training?
Among all breeds of domestic rabbits, well-trained, we can distinguish two groups – large and dwarf varieties, significantly differing in their physical form. It should be taken into account when choosing a pet.
Here is a list of large breeds that can be well trained:
- Flandre – a long-tamed breed of very large size – in some cases, the weight can reach up to 15 kg! Due to the prescription of domestication, he is not afraid of a person, understands him well and perfectly executes all commands.
- Angora rabbit – has a very fat body and high fluffiness. It is famous for its pronounced phlegmatic character, because of which it easily endures all the stresses associated with learning.
- The Angora lion is a type of the Angora rabbit, distinguished by a slightly less pronounced phlegmatic character and a special way of growing hair on the back of its neck, making them look like the king of beasts.
Rusak is a domestic breed of pet data, very shy and cautious. Differs extremely developed intellect and memory, which very often significantly help them in the process of training.
Here is a brief description of dwarf rabbit breeds that are well-trained:
- Dwarf Shorthair – an animal whose weight rarely reaches 1 kilogram, which, nevertheless, does not prevent him from being quite bold, active and quick-witted. It is these qualities that form their strengths in their upbringing.
- Dwarf dutch – the breed is slightly larger than the previous one, mostly two-colored (gray with white), the representatives of which have a very playful character and high speed of movement in space.
- Fox– a rabbit, named for the corresponding color (yellow-brown) and the characteristic structure of the facial skull. It has a sensitive and flexible intelligence combined with a very pronounced sense of self-worth.
- Lop-eared ram – these pets tend to form a very fast and pronounced attachment to the owner. Also love to play with people.
- Pygmy Rex – a very curious and cheerful pet, active in the question of studying the surrounding world, which is often managed to get used to the tray almost the first time.
- Hermelin – extremely phlegmatic breed, more tuned to independent pastime.
- Dwarf butterfly – collectible breed, which is almost impossible to find in our area. Differs in especially developed sense of smell and hearing, emphasizing on which, it is possible to achieve special success in training.
- Squirrel – these animals, as the name implies, resemble squirrel in appearance. Very nimble, cheerful, funny and active pets.
Teach the rabbit to the hands.
For the most part, rabbits are rather gentle creatures, so you cannot immediately embrace them, squeeze them in your hands and squeeze in every possible way. This will only scare the poor animal away from you. Immediately after the purchase, let him settle into the cage, – let him sniff everything, run a little and after the end of the acclimatization period he will come to you to get acquainted.
Do not pull the animal out of the cage on your own – it can accept this as a fact of invasion of personal territory and will never be able to perceive you as your friend and master. It is especially important to explain all these aspects of the behavior with your pet to your children, who probably will want to play with the animal immediately. Only after the animal leaves the cage itself, you can start short, unobtrusive communication sessions with it. Practically all domestic rabbits react very warmly to gentle, medium-duration and light, expressive sessions of affectionate treatment – in the form of, for example, scratching behind the ear or massaging the back and abdomen. Do not raise the voice of the pet, constantly feed various rabbit yummy, and very soon, his character will become very soft, and your liking for you will increase.
How to raise a rabbit?
There are several basic upbringing elements that a pet should follow. It is the correct and adequate use of the tray, as well as walking on a leash behind the owner. And if with the first, with the correct behavior of the owners, rabbits often do not have any particular difficulties, then the second is not an easy task.
How to teach a tray.
Training to the tray – a standard procedure for pets, and rabbits – is no exception. Here is an exemplary step by step course of action:
- First, observe which corner of your room your pet most often needs – there you will need to put a tray.
- At first, it will be necessary to plant your fluffy animal into it yourself, maybe even to pronounce something soothing and gentle, for example: “A ray, it’s time to do things,” it is only important to do it in a calm and gentle tone.
- Transfer all hard feces found elsewhere and wetted straw into a tray – to increase the odor and bind the animal to a specific place.
- Very soon, the rabbit himself will understand what they want from him and will begin to walk on his own to a predetermined place. He will still be a little embarrassed by the household, but this too will pass with time.
Teaching to walk on a leash.
The ability to walk on a leash and obey with the commands of the owner is available not only for dogs. It is essential to start training your rabbit to a leash as early as possible since this directly affects the duration and comfort of its life.
- First you should give the rabbit how to sniff the leash and get used to it. To do this, you can put a leash inside or outside the pet’s cage.
- Then, after the furry animal gets used to it, start to fasten it and keep it next to you within the apartment, first only a few minutes, and then – all increasing and increasing the time.
- When driving a rabbit on a leash around the apartment will be fully mastered, you and your ward can proceed to street walks and more serious training.
How to play with a rabbit?
The game form of training is one of the most progressive and effective and at the same time, the most ancient forms of acquiring new skills. In this regard, you, as the owner, it is important to know in advance how to play correctly with your rabbit, what toys and games exist for this, and also how to choose the right toy for your pet.
There are several fundamentally different types of toys for rabbits.
Among them are:
- mazes and houses;
- toys designed to sharpen teeth.
The choice of a specific type of toy directly depends on your financial capabilities and your goals. For example, if you intend to develop the intelligence of a rabbit and its spatial thinking, it would be best to purchase a maze of a house, and if you think first of all about the physical form of a pet, purchase a ball for it. If you do not have the opportunity to participate in the game process for a long time – get a rattle, the rabbit will drive it on the floor independently only for the sake of sonorous “musical” modulations. Obligatory toy for each domestic rabbit, of course, is an object intended for sharpening teeth. It can be of various sizes and shapes, for example a bone, a birch branch, a rope with a knot at the end, etc. The main thing is that it smells attractive to the pet, and does not bother to nibble it.
A top-rated and fun game – a game with a ball. It is quite simple to play it – for this, you only need to train your pet in advance to bring back a ball thrown near you. Throw the ball into the field of view of the rabbit, but no further than a few meters, accompanying it with encouraging, calm statements, and he will return it to you to repeat the memorized cycle. Besides, there is also a kind of self-play with a ball or rattle, when a pet rolls a toy on the floor to get a pleasant visual or sound experience. Most of all, this game is good because it gives great pleasure to the wool animal, without requiring involvement in the owner’s process.
Using houses, tunnels, and labyrinths for games develops the spatial thinking of your wards and allows them to increase their intellectual potential intensively. Such games can be considered the most productive and useful for learning your rabbits, even though at a certain stage, the pet will no longer need a master.
The rabbit, as already mentioned, is not bad training and can achieve significant success in this field. However, training can have different timelines for achieving complete obedience and performance, as well as include a variety of approaches and methods. To achieve maximum efficiency, you must take into account the characteristics of each trick.
Do the rack.
It is one of the most simple, but at the same time producing the greatest effect on the audience tricks. Teach him your pet will not do any personal work.
Here is an approximate course of training, which will help the animal to master this trick:
- When treating a rabbit with any of its favorite delicacies, gradually raise your hand with it upwards.
- In the process, say any permanent, fixed command, for example: “Benya, up”.
- The pet will reach for food and stand on its hind legs, trying to get it.
- Gradually reduce the frequency of treats for a well-executed trick, but continue the sound stimulation.
- In the end, the rabbit will respond only to the team, and the treatment will only need to be given from time to time to maintain the reflex that has been formed.
Jumping over obstacles.
Jumping over obstacles is a rather complicated trick, which you should start to perform only after you have mastered a few more simple ones. The complexity of implementation is because the rabbit will have to adapt to the multiple, dynamically changing conditions of the surrounding environment. The trick is first to teach the animal to overcome one particular obstacle, and then add new ones to their series, gradually teaching the pet to overcome each of them.
Jumping through the rings.
To learn this trick you will need a plastic, wooden or rag ring, which you can do yourself.
- Put the ring in front of the pet, holding it vertically, and show the dainty through it.
- Every time the rabbit crosses the ring to take possession of the snack, reinforce the action with an initial command and a laudatory calm speech at the end.
- Gradually, the reward can be removed, doing the animal with gentle words instead.
- In the end, the platform with the suspended ring is gradually lifted upwards so that the rabbit has to make a jump.
Roll out roll.
This trick has the most pronounced external effect if the unwinding of a roll of paper occurs quickly. All the principles of training are similar to those described in the previous paragraphs, and the only difference is that the rabbit must be put on the unwinding side of the paper roll and not allowed to get to the snack until the whole roll is unwound.
What to do with aggressive individuals?
The most frequent reaction of a pet to attempts to start his training is the desire to ignore your actions, or, conversely, to show aggressiveness, biting you. If you notice any such manifestations – make a loud, decisive sound and carefully remove the animal from itself. Remember that your goal is not to make your pet hurt, but just to let him know who is in charge of the situation. Never beat a rabbit – your hands should automatically become for your pet a source of enjoyable life experiences. Do not sharply withdraw your hand from the animal, even if it intends to bite you – so the pet will understand that you are no longer afraid of him, and in the end, he will stop attacking you. Constantly encourage your Fluffy to behave properly with a variety of treats.
In the end, make sure that there is no valid reason for rabbit aggression. Perhaps it is ill or is in unsatisfactory sanitary and epidemic conditions, or its comfort and/or health is affected in some other way. If you are lucky enough to discover the true cause of your pet’s bad behavior, then after its elimination, it will almost instantly become sweet and docile.
So, now you know the secrets of raising rabbits. But remember that only carefully trained trainers can quickly achieve awe-inspiring results, suitable for performances and widespread demonstrations. Therefore, be patient, love, and, of course, rabbit delicacies!