As a rabbit parent, your actions sometimes are not fair or even good for your bunny, and they can’t even really express their hurt feelings or anger. We all make mistakes around our people and our rabbits, but we just have to learn from those mistakes and learn how to apologize to our rabbits effectively.
The best way to apologize to your bunny is by offering them special treats. Go to a grocery store and get some of the favorite fruits for the bunny to assure them that you still love him. Handfeed those treats to help re-establish that intimate bond with your rabbit.
Often, it’s difficult to understand a rabbit’s behavior, and it’s natural to blame yourself for the unusual and strange behaviors that follow some mistake on your part.
In this article, I will share how to apologize to your rabbit so that he really forgives you and also teach you how rabbits apologize to humans…after all, it’s not just us humans who sometimes make mistakes.
How To Apologize To Your Rabbit?
To apologize to your rabbit, sit or lay on the ground at their level while offering them some of their favorite treats either from the palm of your hand, from on your lap, or from a spot right beside your leg. If your rabbit is really scared or upset, don’t even try to touch them or interact. Just give them time to get used to being near you.
Even if the bunny is scared of you and treats you like a stranger (or worse, a predator), in time that trust and bond will overcome their temporary fear and distrust. Your goal is to be patient and 100% non-threatening.
If you and your bunny have been friends for a while, then you know what treats that your rabbit simply can’t resist. Now is the time to pull out those irresistible treats.
Some treats are so tempting that rabbits would always crave them even when they are stuffed or scared!
If you’re a relatively new rabbit parent and don’t yet know what your bunny’s favorite treats are, don’t worry. I got some ideas for you.
Just like us, rabbits love sugar…and just like that they shouldn’t eat it too often. It should be a treat.
The best and most natural source of sugar for bunny rabbis are fruit.
A List Of Popular Treats For Rabbits
Make sure to check apples and peaches’ skin for any pesticides or wax on it. If you’re not sure about the skin on these fruits, it’s better to peel off the skin before giving them to your bunny.
Remember that sugar is a treat. So let’s not overdo it even when you’re trying to apologize to your bunny. As a treat, you should give no more than 1-2 tablespoons of fruit to your rabbit every one or two days. If the amount of fruit that you give your rabbit exceeds this, your bunny’s high sugar diet can upset the GI tract of the rabbits and make your bunny fat.
What NOT to Do When You’re Apologizing Your Rabbit
Rabbits are very forgiving creatures and in no time you’ll be best buds with your bunny again. To speed up the process, here are a few things you should avoid when apologizing to your rabbit:
- Don’t try to offer your rabbit the same-old food as a treat when you’re appoligizing for a blunder. A treat should be something special. You might even want to reserve your bunny’s very favorite treat for just such an occasions.
- Don’t get carried away with the treats. Too much of a good thing is a bad thing. You don’t want your bunny’s bad day complicated with an upset stomach.
- Don’t place your forehead against your rabbit’s forehead. Your head is significantly bigger than your rabbit’s head and you need to remember that a bunny is naturally a prey animal. If you come in close like that when your bun is already a little freaked out, it might feel like your getting ready to eat him!
- Don’t hold your bunny against their will when they are scared unless doing so is necessary to keep them safe from harm. Being trapped will only increase their fear.
Why You Might Need To Apologize Your Rabbit
You should apologize to your rabbit to regain his trust after that trust has been harmed by some event, even if you’re not at fault. It’s not always your offensive behavior that upsets the rabbit’s proud nature. A rabbit can be scared or offend for any number of reasons.
1. Causing Your Rabbit Pain
Rabbits are naturally prey, and if you accidentally hurt them they might begin to think of you as a predator who could attack at any moment. This is simply their nature, but you can regain that trust in a short time.
2. Petting Another Animal
Some bunnies are insecure — They can’t see you loving another being when they’re around without hurting their feelings. My daughter had a rabbit who would sulk if she even smelled another rabbit on your hands.
3. Not Offering Food To Your Rabbit
Not everything in your refrigerator is good for your rabbit’s health. Rabbits who roam freely in a house often want to share dinner with you — And if you deny their not-so-subtle demands, your bunny can become offended and pouty. No matter how much they insist on sharing your plate, you should always give recommended rabbit food to them.
Pizza is not good rabbit food no matter how badly your bun wants it.
4. Brushing Rabbit With Heavy Hands
We brush our bunnies often, and even more when they are molting to limit the rabbit hair drifting in the air. Some of our rabbits loved being brushed, a few hated it. All of them can be offended by being brushed too hard or simply for too long.
5. Not Giving Enough Attention
Rabbits are social animals and need socializing. They want you to play with them. Rabbits who feel neglected or bored will act out. Some rabbits will dump their food and do strange things to get your attention.
6. Cleaning the Rabbit’s Hutch
Although you’re doing your bunny a huge favor by cleaning the rabbit’s hutch and making their place livable, they might see it as an invasive act. Still, it’s a chore that has to happen, so you can’t do much about it except apologizing for it.
7. Getting Your Rabbit Dirty
Well, if you petted my hair with pizza-hands I’d be annoyed too. Cleaning rabbit fur isn’t easy!
8. Socializing With People
If we have friends over who want to play with the bunny, the bunny is so happy. However, when friends come over to play cards the bunny gets pouty.
9. Disrupting Your Home’s Peace
Most bunnies don’t like big changes. Those friends coming over to play cards isn’t so bad, but having them over to watch the big game and scream at the television is a disruption which just stresses out our rabbits.
10. Changing Your Routine
Rabbits are creatures of habit. They get used to being fed at a certain time. Lights out at a certain time. Scheduled playtime. If your schedule changes, it’s going to take a bit for your bunny to change theirs too.
11. Introducing A New House Member
Bring home a new pet, roommate, or baby will rock your bunny’s world for a bit. They’re going to need an apology.
12. Leaving For An Extended Period
Your bunny doesn’t care that your traveling for business, they just care that you’re gone and some stranger is feeding them and doing a poor job keeping their litter box clean.
13. Not Cleaning Their Litter Box
Once your bunny knows it’s your job to clean their litter box, they might hold you accountable for doing it right. No one likes a dirty toilet.
14. Cleaning Your Rabbits Litter Box
Sometimes you just can’t win…
How Do Rabbits Apologize to Humans?
When your rabbit has wronged you, they usually know it. This usually happens when the unintentionally hurt you.
We’ve all be scratched by a rabbit who was done being brushed and ready to move on.
Rabbits apologize to humans using behavior and body language. To apologize, your bunny might groom you (licking and nibbling), rub their head against you, and running circles around you.
1. Grooming To Apologize
If your rabbit is licking and nibbling on your fingers, arm, or toes, it usually means he is trying to get your attention. This is a common behavior if they sense your sadness or annoyance. They are trying to apologize!
2. Rubbing Their Heads Against You To Apologize
Normally, when they are not angry or upset, most bunnies love getting their head rubbed and massaged. I think its a very connecting act for them.
When your rabbit wants to apologize to you and reconnect, they will rub their heads and noses against you. It’s how they show their affection and love towards you.
You can complete the reconnection by giving your bunny some head rubs in return.
3. Binkying To Apologize
Binkying is a common bunny behavior that is characterized by fast running, bigs jumps, and twitching or flicking ears. Binkying behavior is displayed when a rabbit is happy and excited.
If your bunny senses that you are upset with them, they often bink to get your attention and try to get you to smile, laugh, and play with them. Appreciate their effort, and give them a little love.
4. Circling Around You To Apologize
Much like binkying, circling you is a way to get your attention and to apologize. I also think it’s a way to mark you as their person.
Now that you have a better understanding of the etiquette of apologizing to rabbits, I hope that your bunny life is just a little more joy filled.