Rabbits are social animals that love to interact with their owners and other rabbits. This intelligent and social creature thrives in a living environment where it can play, exercise and bond with a loving caretaker.
Rabbits make great pets because bunny behavior is different than the behavior of other small pets. To ensure your bunny is happy though, you’ll need to follow a few key tips for interacting with your bunny.
A house rabbit is a domestic rabbit that is kept as a pet and which lives inside the home with its owners. In general, a house rabbit has an indoor cage or pen. There is also a safe exercise area where they can hop around and play. House rabbits needs at least four hours per day outside their cages in a safe environment in order to keep its muscles from wasting away. The house rabbits are usually trained to perform certain tasks so that they can live without causing much nuisance to the human occupiers of the home.
The main behavior problems that house rabbit owners face are:
- The rabbit urinates everywhere
- The rabbit chews on everything and anything it comes across
When first introduced in a home, the rabbit may urinate in order to mark its territory. Later, it may be trained to use a litter box. The problem may persist with male rabbits that have the tendency to continue marking their territory. The problem may be resolved by neutering the male.
The problem of chewing arises when the rabbits are bored. Rabbits should be provided with toys that they can play with and chew upon.
Bonding with Your Rabbit
The most important part of creating a great relationship with your bunny is to spend time bonding with him or her. Forming a trusting and caring relationship will make handling and training your bunny so much easier than if you simply treat your bunny as another pet. Rabbits love to be gentle picked up and snuggled, allowed to hop around freely, and gently coaxed back into their cage when its time to be put away during the day or at night.
Forcing a rabbit to do anything will most likely result in negative behavioral actions on the rabbit’s part. You can also bond with your rabbit at feeding times or by giving your rabbit small treats a few times a week.
Rabbits are Smart
One of the greatest parts of bunny behavior is that rabbits are smart animals that love a challenge. Provide your rabbit with plenty of toys both in their cage and in any playtime area, such as a rabbit-proof room, a playpen or a rabbit run. Toys can range from the simple and inexpensive, like paper bags or cardboard boxes, to store-bought toys for bunnies, cats and birds. Anything that your bunny can chew on or push around will generally be a hit.
Rabbits also love to climb and jump short distance, so ramps leading to platforms and things of this nature will make your bunny happy while also giving him or her valuable exercise time.
Bunnies can be mischievous if you let them, so supervised playtime is usually best, especially for a young rabbit or a rabbit that is new to your home. Having a rabbit-proof room that you can be in while your rabbit is playing, or a playpen big enough for you and your rabbit to be in, are the best options for indoor playtime. You can also supervise your rabbit outdoors.
Supervised playtime is also a great way to bond with your rabbit, as they will begin to see you as a loving companion rather than just the person that gives them food and water. You can slowly chase your rabbit around a room, roll toys towards him or her, or simply sit in the room and allow your rabbit to climb on you when it pleases.
One Rabbit or Two?
If you can afford to and are willing to have two bunnies, it’s a great idea to get your rabbit a companion so that the rabbits can exercise together and have a friend at all times. Neutered bunnies make the best companions for each other because altered rabbits display less aggression.
Rabbits are naturally social creatures that love to be around their owners and interact with people and other creatures. Rabbits do best when they are given a stable home, in the form of a rabbit-proof room or a large cage, and plenty of exercise and interaction.
Rabbits Showing Affection
Rabbits love to be held close to humans bodies so they feel secure. After interacting with your pet rabbit enough and showing them lots of love you may notice your bunny start to lick you. This is them trying to clean you like a fellow bunny and is one of the highest forms of rabbit affection. When they lick you they love you very much.
Another way they show you love is by trying to show off by jumping sporadically called a bink, binky, or binking. This is your rabbit trying to show off in front of you, rabbits that are caged all the time and never get any interaction from humans or other rabbits normally wont show these sign of affection. Enjoy spending time with your pet bunny and they will love you back.
Common Facts About Rabbit Behavior
Rabbits can be indoor and outdoor pets. In both cases they need plenty of room to run, and have at least four hours of quality running/playing time per day. Much exercise keeps your rabbit healthy and happy.
Sometimes your rabbit will thump their hind limbs. Thumping hind limbs is no worry matter, this behavior is natural and akin to the wild rabbits who will thump their feet to warn the others about the approaching treat.
Rabbits will cohabit very well with guinea pigs but 2 bucks will never cohabit, even if castrated. Rabbits are social animals, and they need interaction. They are very cute and can make great pets for families with children. Rabbits are in general quite easy to tame (though it differs form breed to breed) if they are handled regularly from birth.
The rabbits are by nature very clean. A pet rabbit will often choose one corner in their cage to deposit their poops and urine, so let you rabbit eat, in a different corner. The only exception is when a buck marks his territory with his urine. Rubbing his chin on things (new toys, for example) means leaving his own scent on it to mark as “his property”.
Your bunny may attack you with bared teeth and claws when you to take him/her out of the cage for a cuddle . This is common when rabbits become sexually mature or during pregnancy. During such periods it is better to open the cage door, let the rabbit on on his/her own and then handle them.
Keeping a rabbit in an outdoor enclosure limits the amount of human interaction they will have, and also exposes them to the elements of nature. Rabbits are rather fragile creatures that tend to contract illness easier and suffer from listlessness and depression when isolated. For these reasons, many rabbit owners prefer to keep their furry friends inside.