When your friend is feeling off, you ask them what is happening. If they are comfortable with you, they will tell you in detail, and you can help them fix their problem. In the case of animals, it gets a little tricky.
Your pets cannot speak to you to let you know something is bothering them. You can tell your furry friend is upset with dogs and cats as they might howl, bark, hiss, growl, and mew.
Bunnies are voiceless creatures, and it is hard to decipher their body language if you are a new pet owner. If your rabbit is doing unusual behavior, you might wonder why your bunny is acting weird.
Rabbits use their body language to show their discomfort and troubles. A healthy rabbit usually hops, runs, and zooms around the place. However, bunnies tend to become quiet and show erratic behavior when feeling ill or low.
As you get a pet rabbit for yourself, you will get familiar with its body language and daily behavior. Noticing your pet’s usual routine is important because that is the only way to know when it is in distress.
Unlike children, our pets cannot tell us what they want. Our job is to understand their needs by looking at their bodies and mood. Keep reading to understand better why your pet might behave weirdly.
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Common Weird Behaviors of Rabbits
Every bunny is an individual and has its ways of living life and doing things. People have different personalities, wants, desires, emotions, favorite food, etc.
However, they have some similar things. For example, any person in pain will frown and make noise. Bunnies are the same way.
All rabbits eat the same food with unlimited hay and moderate amounts of greens, fruits, flowers, and pellets. Similarly, when rabbits are in pain or experiencing discomfort, they exhibit some behaviors seen in every bunny.
Following are weird behaviors seen in a bunny that is in a painful or discomforting situation:
Rabbits might nip you playfully to show that they are excited to hang out with you. However, biting is another thing. Rabbits do not bite to show their love. If your precious furry friend is biting you, something is wrong.
As your rabbit cannot use words to express its concerns, it will act out in frustration. Your bunny will bite you to get your attention. Always check on your pet if it bites you because there is a high chance your bunny is in pain.
Rabbits are prey animals and have a few tricks up their furry sleeves to try and wave off their predators. These tiny animals have solid hind legs with great force.
If your bunny is frustrated, scared, or angry, it will raise its hind legs and bring them down with total energy to stomp. When you notice your rabbit stomping, give it some alone time to calm down. Meanwhile, it would be best if you figured out the cause behind the unusual stomping behavior.
Rabbits usually do not make any sounds. They are hyperactive creatures and love to use their body language to express themselves.
If your rabbit is making shrill screaming sounds, something is severely wrong. Your precious furry friend will only scream if it is immensely afraid or in excruciating pain.
Apart from the above-mentioned unusual acts, anything out of the ordinary should raise your concern about your bunny’s health. Rabbits are fragile creatures with delicate bodily functions.
Your pet loves having a consistent pattern of things in its day. If your rabbit deviates from its typical day, you should observe and call your vet.
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Reasons Why Your Rabbit Might Be Acting Weird
Many health issues and things can make your rabbit act out to gain your attention. Here are a few:
These annoying little bugs can make your rabbit feel quite irritated and angry with an intense sense of itch. If your rabbit has ear mites, it may shake its head and scratch its ears.
With fur mites, your rabbit’s neck and back will start accumulating dust, making your precious bunny scratch away an uncontrollable itch. Lastly, burrowing mites are the worst.
Female mites will dig into your poor rabbit’s skin and lay eggs, hatching and living in your bunny’s fur; the newly born mites will cause significant discomfort.
Rabbits can get an ear infection due to mite infestation or wax build-up. If your bunny is scratching or shaking its head too much and is not happy when you touch its ears, it has contracted an ear infection.
Rabbits are sophisticated animals when it comes to going to the toilet. They like to pee or defecate in the same spot every time, which makes it easier for a pet owner to notice their toilet pattern.
If your rabbit goes to its litter box but does leave a wet patch or fecal pellets, something is wrong. Your bunny might have a kidney infection and needs to get to the vet.
A rabbit has ever-growing teeth. Usually, a rabbit’s diet has plenty of hay and other crunchy food that helps trim its teeth naturally.
However, there is a malocclusion condition when your rabbit cannot wear its teeth down with food. In this case, your vet will have to trim your rabbit’s teeth for life artificially.
Rabbits have a shedding season, just like most animals. Plus, rabbits groom themselves. It can cause hairballs in your rabbit’s stomach. Unlike cats, rabbits cannot vomit the furballs from their system, so if it becomes more prominent in size, it causes severe pain for your bunny.
To prevent this, you can keep your rabbit’s surrounding fur free during shedding season, brush its fur gently twice a week, keep it hydrated, etc.
If you feed your rabbit too many vegetables, fruits, flowers, or pellets, it will develop an upset stomach.
A rabbit’s daily diet should have hay as the dominant food. You should measure the portions of veggies and fruits as one to two teaspoons against 2lbs of your rabbit’s weight once a week.
If you have an outdoor bunny, keeping its hutch covered in the summer is essential to prevent your precious pet from getting a heatstroke. To identify if your bunny has a heatstroke, notice if it is panting, lethargic, salivating, weak, and has red ears.
Rabbits sneeze once in a while due to dust or the season changing. It is usual for animals to do so.
However, if your rabbit is constantly sneezing, has a watery nose, discharging yellow mucous with a sneeze, snoring, has raspy breathing, or has dirty forepaws after cleaning its face, your rabbit has snuffles and needs antibiotics.
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What To Do When Your Rabbit Is Acting Weirdly?
As a pet owner, you are responsible for caring for your rabbit and making its pain disappear. Here is what you should do when your bunny is acting weird:
A Vet Visit
The first thing you should do is take your precious bunny to the vet. Do not wait for symptoms to show up or for your bunny to get better on its own. Call your vet and book an appointment immediately to avoid any loss of life.
Make Your Rabbit Relax
When bunnies are in physical pain or discomfort, they get emotionally disturbed too. While you wait for the vet, snuggle with your rabbit and stroke its fur. Your rabbit would love to know it is safe, loved, and in good hands.
Hold Your Bunny
Rabbits are fragile creatures, and lifting them can be tricky. However, if you gently pick your rabbit up and place it in your lap when it feels unwell, you will make quite a difference.
When feeling sick, your rabbit needs to feel safe and sound. Give it that feeling to avoid any further emotional and physical distress.
Animals can be unpredictable creatures if you are new to raising a pet. Rabbits are sensitive creatures that love a set pattern and routine of their lives. It makes it easier for a bunny owner to notice their rabbit behaving oddly.
Call your vet as soon as you realize your precious furry friend is acting weird and away from the usual routine. As a pet parent, it is stressful when your voiceless furry baby is unwell because you cannot be sure what is hurting them.
Do not wait to see the vet because only a professional can fix whatever is wrong with your rabbit. Stay calm and give your rabbit loads of love through this tough time.