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They’re pretty damn cute, that much is for certain. But are bunnies good pets?
I might be a bit biased, as a bunny-parent myself, but I’m here to make a case for your next pet to be a rabbit.
This post is dedicated to Lea, my elderly Lionhead bunny (pictured on the right, aged 10).
Below, we’ll explore five reasons to get a bunny, followed by some basic tips for caring for these adorable animals.
Now… why are bunnies good pets?
Let’s start with the obvious: Bunnies Are Cute!
When they give themselves a bath? *clutches chest* Agh! Too cute.
I get a good dose of serotonin just looking at my bunny. She’s so fluffy! So soft! With those big black eyes and chubby cheeks… what’s not to love?
Reason #2: Bunnies Are Cuddly!
A lot people have the misconception that rabbits don’t like to be held, that they just stoically sit in a cage.
But that’s not true! (And bunnies aren’t meant to be kept in cages 24/7 — or at all, if you can help it!)
Many bunnies love to be held and snuggled with (provided you handle them the right way).
They may even lick you, or give you little love nibbles.
Side Note: much like a cat’s love bites, bunny love nibbles can hurt, or at least be startling. Give a little yelp and pull away from your bunny to give them the message that you don’t like their little bites!
Reason #3: Bunnies Are Smart!
Rabbits are so much smarter than most people think.
They can be litter-trained, and even trained to do tricks, as seen below.
They might even train YOU.
My Lea is clever enough to know that if she thumps real loud, I’ll come and cuddle with her.
She’ll also come up and boop my hand with her nose, asking to be pet. Rabbits are clever animals!
Reason #4: Bunnies Are Playful!
Bunnies love to play! They are entertained by seemingly the most simple things, which adds to their cuteness factor.
I get a real kick out of watching Lea pick things up and toss them a few centimeters to the side. She’s having the time of her life!
Give your bunny something to push around, or pick up and throw with their teeth.
They love knocking things over!
The cardboard tubes that hold toilet paper or paper towels make excellent bunny toys. And as a bonus, they’re cheap, and are a great way to upcycle!
I’ll usually save mine and line them up for Lea to knock down or throw around.
I guess it really is the little things in life, isn’t it?
Reason #5: Bunnies Are (Mostly) Easy to Care For!
There is no such thing as an “easy” pet, because loving and caring for an animal goes beyond just keeping them fed and sheltered.
But, as far as the day-to-day tasks of caring for a pet go, bunnies are fairly simple to take care of!
Keep their food and water dishes full, clean their cage once or twice a week, and change their cage’s bedding entirely about once a month.
Pretty simple, right?
But let’s take a deeper look at how to properly care for a bunny.
How to Care for a Bunny
They’re not cage animals!
You’ve gotta take them out and play with them. Let them run around — you might even see them binky!
Many people adopt a bunny without knowing how much care they need — it’s not enough to just feed them and keep their cage clean!
They need love and attention, just like cats or dogs (or any other animal in a human’s care, really).
My bunny loves to sit in my lap or on my shoulder and just be near me. She’ll nudge my hand or face from time to time, silently asking to be pet.
Bunnies can be a very loving and rewarding pet to keep, if you are willing to put in the time and effort to be a good bunny parent.
Are Bunnies Good Pets for Kids?
That’s gonna depend on your kid(s)!
The age of your child(ren) is the most important factor in deciding whether a bunny would be good for the family.
As prey animals, rabbits are naturally fearful animals. The loudness and unpredictability that a toddler brings into a home would be very stressful for a bunny to endure.
The older (and more responsible) the child, the more likely you’ll be able to have a happy home for both humans and bunnies.
As with any pet, it’s important to supervise interactions between your animals and children.
Children should never be the sole caretaker for a bunny. They can help while the adults care for the animal, but the overall wellbeing of the bunny should never be left to a child.
Many bunnies are brought into family homes around Easter, but aren’t properly cared for, and are stressed out by the chaos of a family with children. Assess your home’s comfort levels for a bunny before bringing one home.
Do Cats and Bunnies Get Along?
That’ll depend on the cat in question!
I was hesitant to introduce my bunny to my cats, but I took the chance (while supervising the entire interaction) and… they love each other!
One cat will go up to her and attempt to groom her whenever she gets the chance.
The other tolerates her, but typically avoids her.
I’ve yet to have any negative interactions between the two species, but I make sure to supervise regardless, just in case.
Are Bunnies Good Pets with Dogs?
Again, that’ll depend on each individual animal!
While the laid back attitude of most cats might help a bunny feel more at ease around them, dogs can be a bit more tricky.
If you have a dog who loves to bark and is high-energy, a bunny might not be the best addition to the home.
It’s best to introduce new pets to each other slowly, and give the bunny somewhere to run and hide.
Bunnies Are Social Creatures
If you’re looking to have more than one pet, consider getting two (or more!) bunnies.
While docile, rabbits are very social, and would benefit from having another fluffy buddy around.
Many pet stores and shelters insist on selling rabbits by the pair, so they can have a companion.
If you’re busy at work and don’t have time to be with your bunny throughout the day, it’s a good idea to get another bunny to keep them company.
Ready to Bring Home a Bunny?
I hope this article has helped you answer the question, “Are bunnies good pets?” (And I hope, like me, you’ve come to the conclusion that the answer is yes.)
If you’re thinking about adding a bunny or two to your household, check out this list of places to buy a bunny.
Adopt, Don’t Shop (If Possible)
While bunnies aren’t as easy to find in shelters as cats or dogs, adopting is always the best option whenever possible.
Adopting a pet makes more room in animal shelters, and gives a second chance to an animal who may not have found a loving home elsewhere.
Wherever you find your new pet bunny (or bunnies), be sure to give them lots of love and attention.
Bunnies are rewarding pets to care for, and deserve more recognition amongst the more popular cats and dogs.
Bunnies not doing it for you? Consider getting a cat!
If you love animals but can’t keep one at home, you can always volunteer with them!
Do you have a bunny? Are you thinking about getting a bunny? Share your bunny-loving thoughts in the comments below!! 🐰