Housing a Buck and Doe Rabbit Together


December 23, 2012 by Mike Oscar Hotel

I know that what I’m about to write will draw opinions of differing range, so I want to preface it by saying that this is what works here on the half-acre.  It may not work for you.

I’ve read post after post on discussion boards about rabbit breeding.  I generally read the same answers over and over again.  Bring the doe to the buck’s cage.  Don’t leave the doe in with the buck too long.  Never bring the buck to the doe’s cage, as she will get territorial and neuter him, attack him, etc..

I’m here to tell you that (most of) those answers are myths.  Housing a buck and doe together can have many beneficial results.

Rosie Bell

Rosie Bell (doe) was born in December, 2011 to Easter, otherwise known as “Superpsychocrackheadbunny”.  Easter was insane.  No other way of explaining it.  The buck that she mated with had no personality.  Meat on feet, really. The results, it seemed, were doomed from the beginning.

Out came Rosie Bell.  Within a short time, she was one of the most delightful bunnies I’d ever met.  I let her run with the chickens a lot.  When I walked into the run, she would approach me and put her front paws on my leg like a dog.  I’d reach down and pet her.  She was an absolute joy.

Then came sexual maturity.

She turned from the sweetest bunny ever to a replica of her crack head mom.  She would thump, growl and run away when I opened the cage to pet or feed her.  I attempted to sell her at a swap, but nobody would buy her because of her poor personality.

Rice, my New Zealand buck, is great.  Very well tempered.  Likes attention.


As he was coming into maturity, I had a difficult time getting him to, *ahem*, “close the deal” with a doe, if you will.  The action was there, just not the final fall-off and squeal.  Against much advice, I left him in with Rosie Bell for a month.  She did, in fact, have a litter.

DSCF0694 DSCF0696

What I noticed was that her old behavior was disappearing  She began approaching the cage door with Rice.  When I was scratching his head, she’d nudge me and ask for me to scratch her’s as well.  I’m not sure if it was jealousy or roll modeling.

I might add that after the initial contact, both rabbits settled into cohabitation quite well. They groom each other and cuddle a lot.  Does he bother her for the things he wants?  Occasionally.  But, she more readily submits.  They are absolutely happier together.

My angoras are the same way.  Sunny and Issy are inseparable.  Sunny is an absolute grumpy mess when he isn’t with his girl, but he’s happy when he is with her.  Issy, although grumpy all the time, can often be seen grooming Sunny and cuddling up next to him.


No fighting.  No territorial behavior.  Just happy rabbits.

Of course, when you house rabbits together, there’s almost always a result.

Breed your bunnies responsibly.  Let your bunnies live happy lives.

Pax Domini Sit Semper Vobiscum,

Mike Oscar Hotel

5 thoughts on “Housing a Buck and Doe Rabbit Together

  1. This is a little old but I am poking through achives. :P

    When I had Evo and Nutro accidentally in the same cage (because of broken barriers in temporary cages) they got into a huge fight and Evo still has the scar to show it. It must have been bad because her cut was huge and there was fur everywhere.

    Also ladyrabbits can get double-preggers (they have two places in the uterus to store babies) which is FINE if both fill at once. That’s how 12-baby litters are made! But if she doesn’t she could abort both litters, or try to birth both litters at once resulting in both of them being stillborn blobs that never developed correctly. It could even kill the doe.

    And if you want the rabbit to take a break from breeding to raise her kits, that doesn’t always happen. A boy rabbit can easilly breed a rabbit within days after birth so she can be weaning and pregnant at the same time putting a serious strain on the doe.

    That being said, rabbits are social creatures and do best mentally when housed together. In the wild they live in social groups. So it’s deffinately good for the rabbits mental health if not their physical health.

    • My meat rabbits do try to dominate each other for a bit, but they settle in quickly. Especially if I put the doe in with the buck instead of vice versa. The angoras, however, are pretty chill from day one. I currently have two bucks residing with a doe – no problems.

  2. […]  After trimming, she still ran the bucks in circles.  So I sent in the professional – my ginormous New Zealand, Rice.  Rice is the Don Juan DeMarco of bunnies.  He’s large and willing to romance a girl before […]

  3. Ivory says:

    Congratulations for not succumbing to the pressure of other rabbit breeders practices.

    I too often house does and bucks together. It works well for me because I am always so short of cage space. I just need to make sure I have a clean empty cage for the doe when I think she’s due, and that’s not always 30 days after I put her in with the buck.

    I also like to house my does in pairs, something else that flies in the face of conventional breeders. In fact right now I have three does living together, and they each have a litter, when the kits are old enough to wean I will just rehouse the does and leave the weanlings to grow where they are, saves a lot of stress on the kits.

    • Thanks – I’ve actually taken a lot of heat for that suggestion. It sounds like you and I have similar ideas when it comes to raising rabbits! I find that while rabbits are territorial, they are also very social animals and that being in pairs helps their personalities.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

© Mark Howes and www.tinyhomesteaders.com, 2012-2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Mark Howes and www.tinyhomesteaders.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Contact us!

You can email us questions, comments, suggestions or anything else to tinyhomesteaders@gmail.com.

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

There was an error retrieving images from Instagram. An attempt will be remade in a few minutes.

My Blog

Just another WordPress.com site

Spring Creek Farm

A small farm in rural Montana.

Incrementally Stepping Towards Homesteading

...because each step forward is one step closer

The Happy Homesteaders

Live, Learn, and Grow...Naturally.

Slater Creek Cabin

Where life slows down

This Got My Attention

Some things that got my attention

Thrifty Frugal Mama

A Family of five can live on a tight budget!!


the contents of this website are mine personally and do not reflect any position of the U.S. government or the peace corps

Paca Pride Guest Ranch

Base Camp for your Mountain Loop Experience


"Mountains cannot be surmounted except by winding paths." -- Goethe


who is auntie chelle

mpls homestead

close to the earth in the city

Larry & Stephanie Holden

Politics, Ham Radio, Prepping, Homesteading and the Bible

Good Life Ranch

Heritage food for a sustainable future.


Everything chickens in towns and cities!

Homesteading NJ

Keeping the garden in the Garden State.

Experiencing Local

An interested and invested perspective of my economy

Witching the Homestead

Living self-sufficiently and close to nature.


four decades of organic vegetable gardening and barely a clue

Want Some Honey

Beekeeping with the bees best interest in mind


A Journey into the world of Beekeeping

Our Simple, Sustainable Life

Changing our world one dollar, one meal, one chapter at a time

Blackstone Bees

Small acre homesteading in the Virginia heartland

EastVan Bees

Tales of an urban bee farmer

The Aran Artisan

Making a living by creating every aspect and ingredient of daily life.


Downtown, home gardening, using biodynamic and permaculture methods to produce as much of our own food at 6600 ft. in the Rocky Mountains as possible, then preparing it Weston A. Price style, leaning toward Paleo!

Daren Hess

Healthy Bees, Healthy People, Healthy Planet

Deb's Vintage Home

Crafts, Gardening, Recipes

From My Backyard

Back Yard Gardening - From My Backyard

7 Heavenly Hens GARDEN | blog

We are an urban homestead based on natural, holistic and sustainable principles. Our livestock includes chickens & honey bees and we cultivate fruits, vegetables and kitchen herbs.


Light is Everything!

Family Yields

one family's approach to permaculture

Taylor Family Urban Farm

Follow our adventures as we create our urban farm!

Gold Hill Homestead

living on less

Little Fall Creek

A Family Builds A Homestead In The Rain

My Plot

My blog about my house, garden, and goings on.

Tiny House Of Our Own, Gypsy Style

Joining the Tiny House Movement

Union Homestead

One family's fumbling attempt to live the Good Life in suburbia; a story of trial and error...a lot of error!

Lulu's Musings

Weaving together the threads of life

Maine Health + Wellness


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 362 other followers

%d bloggers like this: