Top Rabbit signs of stress – FAQ
May 15, 2019
Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links.
Wondering whether your rabbits are stressed or not? Realizing the rabbit signs of stress will enable you to prevent your rabbits from rabbit stress death.
Learning all about the signs of fear and nervousness in rabbits will remove the whole confusion between you and your rabbits. As a result, your rabbits will love you.
The best part
I have explained in detail and answered all the FAQ relating to rabbit anxiety symptoms and ways to reduce stress in house rabbits.
Skip to section
Rabbit signs of stress and the reason behind stress.
Being small and delicate animals, rabbits get nervous very easily. As a rabbit guardian, it is you who will have to realize rabbit anxiety symptoms and prevent your rabbits from getting further stress.
Before understanding rabbit signs of stress, you must remember rabbits are naturally prey animals and they are very fearful.
A sudden change in their environment or habitat can cause stress for your rabbits.
If you place your rabbit in a situation where your rabbit feels scared or frightened all the time, it will cause serious stress for them and may cause fatal health concerns.
However, you may not recognize the behavior changes in your rabbits due to stress, if you don’t know the signs.
The rabbit signs of stress are as follows:
A stressed rabbit will behave unusually than normal. Although every different rabbit has different characteristics, rabbit owners once they recognize the normal behavior pattern they will be able to identify the unusual behavior as well:
- Rabbits are a very active animal, however, if they are stressed they will seem anxious and restless;
- On the contrary, some rabbits may become very inactive when they are stressed. They will lose the interest of their surroundings and will be visible quiet trying to hide in a spot;
- Hiding or going somewhere they think is safe is the natural instinct of rabbits. But a stressed rabbit will hide longer than normal to stay away from fear and prevent themselves from nervousness.
- A nervous and stressed rabbit will over groom themselves. At some point, they may even bite themselves and remove a patch of fur from their body. That may even lead to bleeding, so be very careful of this sign.
- Again a rabbit that is nervous may not groom itself at all. rabbits are very clean and self-grooming animals if they stop grooming themselves, you must take notice of that and prevent your rabbit from further anxiety.
- Another sign of an anxious rabbit is being aggressive. It means the rabbit is frightened and trying to protect him/herself.
A stressed rabbit will fight another rabbit and may bite the rabbit guardian when the guardian is trying to handle or pet the rabbit.
- Finally, a stressed rabbit will appear very nervous. They will breathe heavily, may freeze an hold their ears back tight to their head.
But the sign of holding ears tight back to their head is similar to the way a rabbit sleeps. Now, to prevent confusion you have to understand whether it is a sign of stress or your rabbit is just sleeping.
- A stressed rabbit will make noises. Usually, rabbits are very quiet house pets. Nevertheless, in an extremely stressed situation, your pet rabbit will make a screeching sound.
- Another rabbit sign of stress is a change in the rabbit’s feeding and toilet timing. This change in rabbit’s behavior shows that your rabbit is fearful and nervous, hence they only feed and poop when they think it is safe for them.
Why do rabbits get stressed?
Rabbits get stressed when they are scared. As rabbits are a prey animal and like to sleep in burrows even a simple change in the environment can be fearful for them.
Too much fear leads to nervousness and anxiety as a result you rabbit gets stressed.
There are several other factors apart from fear for a rabbit to get stressed. Understanding these other factors are equally important for your rabbits’ health and prevent them from house rabbits getting sick:
- A rabbit will get stressed if you keep them in an unclean environment for a long time. Rabbits are a clean animal.
They prefer to keep themselves clean and play in a clean surrounding. Neither they can clean their own cage nor the running space you provide for your bunnies.
If you do not clean the rabbit cage or hutch regularly it will impact your rabbits’ health. Your rabbit will be stressed and the unclean cage may form bacteria and lead to diseases in your rabbits.
To learn read here >>> How to clean a rabbit cage properly?
- Rabbit owners love to pet their rabbits. Most rabbit owners do not know how to pet a rabbit the right way.
In order to pet a rabbit and lift a rabbit because they are so adorable bunny lovers must first realize there is a decent way to do so. If you lift a rabbit abruptly it will cause stress in rabbits as they are prey animals. Find here >>> How to pet a rabbit and not frighten them.
- Many rabbit owners prefer to keep their pet rabbits outdoors. Keeping a rabbit outdoors is a good idea only if you take the safety measures.
Temperature changes can harm your rabbit a lot. Too much cold or too much heat can cause stress in your rabbits. Preventing rabbits outdoors is easy and you can read here more details about >>> Keeping rabbits outdoors and safety.
- A stressed rabbit is not a healthy rabbit. An unhealthy rabbit is a sick rabbit. To keep your rabbits in good shape it is vital you choose a very good diet for your rabbits.
Understand what is the best food for your rabbits and what to feed them. Rabbits dental health is equally important for overall health. A rabbit wants to continuously chew on something to stop their teeth grow continuously.
So it is vital you provide your rabbits always with some fresh and good quality rabbit hay
- Rabbits are amazing pets. Some pet lovers they try to introduce their rabbit with the previous rabbits they already own.
It may sound complicated yet it is easy and to do so you must introduce new pet rabbits gradually. A rabbit can stay in the same house with cats and dogs. But if you introduce the cat to your rabbits suddenly it will cause stress for you rabbits due to so many reasons. Read here for a basic understanding of >>> How to introduce cats and new rabbits.
How to reduce stress in rabbits? Techniques to calm down a stressed rabbit.
To reduce stress in rabbits you must prevent rabbits from getting fearful. Avoid sudden changes in the environment and their habitat.
In case your rabbit shows signs of stress continuously it is best to visit a rabbit vet immediately. The vet will be able to find the reason for stress and suggest you what measures you must take for your bunny friend.
To reduce stress in rabbits you can take all these steps:
- Provide your rabbits adequate running space for them to exercise and remain healthy;
- Do not expose your rabbits to extreme heat or cold. Find ways to keep them at a comfortable temperature;
- They should be kept in a place with sufficient flow of fresh air.
- Keep them in a clean place.
- Do not expose your rabbits to predators. A mere sight of a predator will shock your rabbits.
- Rabbits are very active animals and get bored easily. Give them plenty of safe rabbit chew toys so that they will not get bored.
- Rabbits are adorable and require companionship. So do not let your rabbit go lonely. Always try to buy a pair of rabbits.
If you do not buy a pair of rabbit, you as a rabbit guardian try to make some time every day to interact and play with rabbits. In no time you will realize these small pets are amazing companion too.
- Do not introduce your rabbits to strangers suddenly. Your rabbits will be frightened by the new faces, and it will be very stressful if the stranger tries to handle your rabbits without having knowledge of how to pet a rabbit.
- Avoid keeping your rabbits in a noisy place. Too much noise will create stress for your rabbits.
- Every time you go out for the whole weekend, do not carry your rabbits along with you. The car travel may be very stressful for your rabbits.
You can keep your rabbit in the house alone but definitely needs supervision. Read here >>> How can you leave a rabbit alone for the weekend?
- Prevent your rabbit from getting sick. Provide them with the best rabbit food and best rabbit hay.
In order to calm down a stressed rabbit, avoid doing all the above mentioned.
Pet your rabbits and let them feel loved.
Give them a place where they can hide and relax.
Provide your rabbits with treats.
Give your rabbit some toys to play with.
Still, if your rabbit is stressed you must visit a vet and explain all your concern.
The rabbit vet will identify the reason and can suggest you the best steps on how to take care of your rabbit.
Rabbit stress death: Can rabbits die from stress?
Yes, rabbits can die from stress. It is not common yet not impossible.
If your rabbit gets a sudden shock from fear of loud noise or sight of an aggressive predator, which may lead to a heart attack.
The heart attack will be the reason for your rabbit’s sudden death.
Want your rabbit to be happy and healthy?