Common Rabbit Behaviours

Below are some of the most common and enjoyable rabbit behaviours…

Crazy dance

Is a sign of pure joy and happiness. Your rabbit will let you know when they are happy and content when they run free and do a little crazy dance by springing into the air, it is a great sight to see and can be entertaining at the same time.

Attention

You rabbit will love to see you when you come for a chat, cuddle or a scratch on the head or under the chin. Rabbits will let you know if they do not want to be held on be left alone.

Toys

Rabbits love to play with things they can bite on, used toilet rolls or paper towel rolls, newspaper is a favourite to rip up, and chew toys from a pet shop, old telephone books and cardboard boxes are fun to hide in.

Digging

Some rabbits will love to dig in the dirt, while others may not, it is a natural instinct, as in the wild they dig their burrows under ground. Just be careful to watch how far down your rabbit digs as not to escape out all together.

Company

Rabbits do like company, sisters are the best companion. Having tried a male guinea pig in the same pen as a rabbit was not a good idea, as the male piggy got a little frisky and thought the rabbits head was female piggy.

Smaller animals such as guinea pigs may get trampled on or hurt if they are in the same housing as guinea pigs. It is advisable to keep them separate.

Hand feeding

Its nice to hand feed your rabbit at meal time as to let them know that they can trust you. It’s also another opportunity to communicate with your fluffy friend.

Pet Bunny

Photo by LeeMitchell on Flickr

Understanding Your Rabbit Behaviour

Tooth chattering,

Or purring, is a happy and content trusting noise, soft chattering sounds made from their teeth usually made when you are patting or cuddling your rabbit.

Tooth grinding,

Louder then the purring noise, meaning fear, nervousness and stress, eyes may also bulge, sign of discomfort or distress.

Grunting and growls,

May depend on rabbits mood and situation, may mean get out of my way , bugger off, this is my house, also maybe, something is hurting, to leave alone or distress.

Nips,

A sign to warn, don’t do that, you are in my way, and I don’t wish to be here right now. Be careful as they are usually gentle but sometimes skin piercing!

Chinning,

A clear way to mark the territory belongs to your rabbit, also that it will probably be good to nibble on later, and remember to come back for a bite. Sign of affection and as the rabbit has a scent gland under the chin which gets activated when rubbed, leaving the scent on all sorts of things.

Licks,

A sign of affection and friendship, as rabbits will clean each other, it’s a grooming process.

Spraying,

Male rabbits that are not neutered will spray urine on the female rabbits, to mark their territory. Females can also spray at times.

False pregnancy

Sometimes carried out by neutered females as well as un-neutered, usually pulling hair from the chest and making a nest and lining it, sometimes not eating as well.

Females are very territorial of their hutch. And generally do not like things to be rearranged, (as when you are cleaning).

Stomping,

Thud of the back feet, there may be danger, a noise that they are not sure of, could also be frightened or mad.

Periscope,

Up on their hind legs, meaning to get a better look around, they heard a noise they are unsure of, or to reach that treat they are just a little short for.

Watching your own rabbit’s behaviour will tell you how they are feeling and what they want. This will help you create a better, long lasting and loving relationship with your fluffy friend.

GuineaPigCare.com.au

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