It’s hard to look at a rabbit and not want to cuddle them. But do bunnies even like to cuddle?
Bunnies do like to cuddle–just not how you’re picturing it. You can’t swaddle them up and rock them in your arms, no matter how fluffy and cute they are.
Instead, you’ve got to meet your rabbit in the middle. Today, we’ll talk about whether rabbits really like to cuddle and how you can cuddle your rabbit HIS way.
Do Bunnies Like to Cuddle?
Bunnies love to cuddle up to each other or in their beds, but when it comes to people, it’s pretty rare. At least the kind of cuddling we do with other pets like cats and dogs.
How Bunnies Like to Cuddle
Again, you have to have a loving and trusting bond for your rabbit to want to cuddle with you. And even when it happens, it’s not what you think. It’s not like cuddling a teddy bear or holding a baby. You can’t do that to your poor bunny, no matter how much you want to.
Really, a rabbit’s definition of cuddling is really just when they lay next to you and stay there for a while. Some may cuddle up right next to you or on your lap, while others will remain inches away.
How to Cuddle Your Bunny on HIS Terms
Note that since all rabbits have different personalities, there are rabbits that love to cuddle and some that don’t. I’ve had rabbits who demand cuddles and a couple who wanted nothing to do with it.
For the ones that do, here’s the right way to cuddle with them.
Cuddle With Your Rabbit on the Floor
Although it may not be the most comfortable way for you to cuddle with your rabbit, this is by far the best way for him, which is what really matters here. To cuddle your rabbit on the floor, simply sit or lay down and let your rabbit come and snuggle up beside you for some pets.
Cuddle With Your Rabbit on the Couch
Another great way to snuggle up with your bun is on the couch. Safely pick your rabbit up and slowly walk to the couch. Put your rabbit beside you or in your lap and pet him to let him adjust and start cuddling back.
What Not to Do
Now, when it comes to cuddling your rabbit, here are some things you should never do!
- Cuddle Your Rabbit in Your Arms Like a Baby or Puppy:
Again, do not cuddle your bunny like a baby, puppy, or even a cat. Also, don’t hold your rabbit too tightly. That can cause an injury, and your rabbit will lose trust in you.
- Cuddle Your Rabbit While Standing:
Do not hold and cuddle your rabbit while standing. Not only do rabbits hate heights, but it can also be really dangerous if your rabbit springs free and jumps from your arms from that high up.
- Attempt to Cuddle Your Bunny Without Bonding First:
Trust is key here. Don’t jump the gun and try to cuddle your bunny without bonding first. Your rabbit will not want to cuddle with you if he doesn’t trust you, and going in for the cuddle right away can scare him away.
- Force Cuddling on Your Rabbit if He Doesn’t Like It:
Don’t overwhelm your rabbit. If he’s not into it at first or at all, don’t force it. Again, some rabbits do not want to cuddle– ever. And if that’s your rabbit, you have to respect that and take what affection they’re willing to give. Of course, bonding will always help to remedy this.
Do Bunnies Like to Be Held?
Most rabbits don’t really like being held. But again, it’s not impossible to come across one that does. My rabbit Butterscotch and Bubba both loved to be held. However, other rabbits I’ve had avoided it at all costs.
You can get your rabbit used to being held after establishing a bond, but you have to hold your rabbit in a way that he feels secure.
How to Properly Hold Your Bunny
Again, it’s best not to hold your rabbit while standing. The height alone could scare him. And if he jumps out of your arms, he could really hurt himself.
When you pick up your rabbit, support his abdomen and bottom. Secure him to your chest, facing you, with your one hand remaining on the bottom. Make sure you support his back.
Do Bunnies Like to Be Petted?
Generally, rabbits love attention, so when they get some good pets, they soak it right up. But much like cats, they only like being petted in certain places.
Where Do Bunnies Like to Be Petted?
Rabbits mostly like to be petted around their heads. More specifically, behind and in between their ears and down to their nose. Some may allow you to lightly pet them along the back, although others will absolutely hate it.
While all rabbits are individuals and might have different preferences, most of them don’t like pets on their backside, belly, sides, paws and tail.
How to Gain Your Rabbit’s Trust
I know I sound like a broken record, but I just want to make myself really clear. Your rabbit will not want to cuddle with you unless he trusts you. And the best way to gain your rabbit’s trust is through bonding.
That means spending time and earning his interest and trust by petting or playing with him and doing other trust-building activities.
How to Approach Your Bunny for Cuddles
Now that we’ve got the trust part over with, here are some tips on how to approach your rabbit to cuddle him.
- Come bearing gifts: Offer your rabbit a treat to entice him to come for cuddles.
- Let your rabbit come to you: Always let your rabbit make the first move. Wait quietly for your rabbit to come to you.
- Sit on the floor: Get on your rabbit’s level and make yourself less threatening by sitting on the ground.
How Not to Approach Your Bunny
Here are some things you should NEVER do when approaching your rabbit for cuddles:
- Don’t come into the room moving fast or being loud
- Don’t walk in and just pick up your rabbit out of nowhere
- Do NOT ever chase your bunny for cuddles
When rabbits don’t like something, they usually thump. So, if you’re not approaching, petting, or holding your rabbit the way he wants you to, or he just doesn’t like it at all, he’ll likely run away and start thumping at you.
Bunnies, for the most part, do like to cuddle. However, it’s not what you may expect it to be. Don’t forget that rabbits show affection in different ways than other animals.
When you get your rabbit accustomed to being held and petted, you can easily start cuddling with your bunny in a way he’s comfortable with. However, some rabbits just don’t like to be cuddled.
Either way, the best way to bond and spend time with your rabbit is by petting and grooming him. Cuddling with your bunny can come later, but only if he’s comfortable with it.