I am currently trying (and failing miserably) to integrate my two outdoor rabbits. My first rabbit (Diego) is a neutered male 1 year old Lionhead, he is very friendly, confident and usually very well behaved and has never bitten anyone (human!) ever. My second rabbit (Yoda) is a neutered male 6 months old Netherland dwarf (he was given to me as a surprise gift) he is very timid and can be very shy but is also very friendly and is not a biter either.
Now I know the fact that a large difference in breeds/size and the fact they are both males is a factor here, before any of you jump to that.
Not integrating them is not the end of the world as I will simply have them live separately, however i thought it might be good for my rabbits to be able to be 'friends' and have the company. I have tried quite a few times to slowly introduce them to each other on neutral territory for 10 minutes at a time, the first few times were fine (lots of sniffing and grooming each other) however it has only gotten worse. Yoda is very inquisitive about Diego and will sniff, lick and sometimes he actually nuzzles into Diego's bottom region but Diego now refuses to get along with Yoda and will try to bite and (on one occasion) growls, once this happens they are immediately separated again and Yoda is checked over. I have also tried putting Yoda into a large cage each day and putting him in Diego's run for Diego to see that Yoda is there and see how he feels about him, Diego would be inquisitive about Yoda and would sometimes lay, groom himself and eat next to cage with Yoda.
My main questions are they just too different? Could it ever work despite gender/size issues? Do any of you have any tips or tricks for integration?
(one trick i've heard of and yet to try is to put vanilla essence on their noses to supposedly trick them into thinking they smell the same..?)