When humans are upset with one another, we simply ask for forgiveness and apologize. Rabbits, on the other hand, apologize in a unique way to you and to other rabbits.

How do rabbits apologize? Rabbits apologize to one another by touching heads. Your rabbit also communicates with you through body language to express how he feels and to apologize.

In this article, we will look at the many ways we can offend and upset our rabbits. We will guide you on the best way to apologize to your rabbit as well as how they apologize to their human. We will also answer some of your burning questions. 

How do rabbits apologize infographic

 

How Do Rabbits Apologize?

Rabbits apologize and communicate using body language. It might be difficult to comprehend a rabbit’s behavior, but here are the many ways they apologize.

 

Do Rabbits Get Into Fights With Each Other?

Rabbits that are bonded are connected like no other and the link between them is rather unique. When two rabbits become bonded, they generally stay that way for the rest of their lives. They will appear to be inseparable and will carry out all of their tasks together.

While your rabbits would be lost without each other, however, they do have quarrels and fights from time to time. Did you know that rabbits can become offended and be mad with each other or you for a few days?  

Don’t worry though, rabbits are quite forgiving and do know how to give and accept an apology.

Bonded rabbits fight for a myriad of reasons that we have come to understand. The reasons can vary and here are a few possibilities:

Territory

Rabbits are naturally territorial. If two rabbits share an enclosure, they will both see it as their own space. This can lead to a fight over who’s space it is.

Domination

A hierarchy is established by every rabbit coupling. One rabbit will be the dominating one, while the other will be the submissive one. The submissive rabbit can try to assert authority.

Too Much Time Together

Rabbits who have formed a strong bond want to spend all of their time together. Rabbits are like humans in this regard, “I love you, but I need my own space and time.”

There’s a Third Rabbit

Adding a third rabbit to a bonded pair of rabbits can often be a difficult situation and a stressful time for them. A hierarchy has already been established, a third rabbit means competition. 

Stop Fights

Allowing a bunny dispute to turn into a fight is not a good idea. While they are attempting to bond, they fight. A fight that can result in injury could also permanently damage their relationship. The easiest solution is to temporarily separate your rabbits. As long as they can see and smell one other, an apology will eventually materialize.

 

How Do Rabbits Apologize to Each Other?

Rabbit behavior is frequently perplexing for pet owners. Many rabbit body language cues, including apologies, might be misinterpreted for something else. So what does a rabbit apology look like?

When a rabbit wants to apologize, it will approach the other. You’ll find the offending rabbit lowering its head and rubbing it on the head of the other rabbit. Another action is rubbing their noses to offer and accept an apology. 

Rabbits, too, express their regret by rubbing their heads together. Both rabbits remain in this position for a few seconds. If one of the rabbits runs away, it isn’t ready to take the apologies yet. Take the rabbits out of the cage and try again another time. Don’t worry too much about this reaction, as we mentioned earlier, rabbits can get offended and hold a grudge.

 

Rabbits Hold Grudges

And speaking of rabbits holding grudges, your rabbit has a variety of emotions that show it is offended. If your rabbit is insulted or annoyed, best believe your bunny will show it. 

A rabbit can retain a grudge for either a short period of time or several days. If your bunny feels wronged in any way, you will see just how stubborn they can be. here are a few body language cues to know if your rabbit is offended and holding a grudge:

  • If your rabbit gives you a quick glance and has its ears facing away from you, it’s letting you know that it sees you but doesn’t care.
  • Your rabbit is angry if it waits for you to see it before hopping off on its merry way. 
  • Your rabbit is angered if it turns its back on you
  • Your rabbit feels insulted if it curls its ears down

Note: These behaviors might be directed towards you or another rabbit. Should you have a bonded pair of rabbits and you notice that one of the rabbits has a grudge against the other, it’s better to keep them apart for a while to avoid any aggression towards the other.

rabbit in tent

 

The Relationship Between Grooming and Apologies

For an effective rabbit apology, rabbits’ heads must be touched for a few seconds. What you may not know is that rabbit communication also relies heavily on grooming. 

It’s the most straightforward method of determining who the dominant and submissive rabbits are. The dominant rabbit will expect the submissive rabbit to groom them on demand.

Here are a few body language signs that can inform you when one of your bunnies is apologizing to the other:

  • When the dominant rabbit allows itself to be groomed, an apology is effectively accepted. It’s essentially a rabbit’s acknowledgment that it was incorrect. 
  • When your bunny is crouching and shrinking, this is a submission signal. Your rabbit recognizes that it made a mistake and recognizes its place in the hierarchy.

 

How Do I Apologize to My Rabbit?

As a rabbit parent, sometimes your actions won’t come across as fair to your rabbit. You may need to apologize to your bunny at some point. Rabbits are proud creatures, and it’s easy to offend them accidentally. 

If this happens, apologize as soon as your bunny allows it. It’s usually quite simple to get a rabbit’s forgiveness. Never Press your forehead to theirs. This might scare your rabbit. Meet your rabbit at ground level and offer its favorite treat Allow your rabbit to come to you to accept the treat.

You can inadvertently insult your rabbit in a variety of ways. These are some of them:

Accidentally Hurting Them

Rabbits are prey animals, and if you hurt them, they may learn to perceive you as a predator who may strike at any time. Learn to apologize immediately and regain your bun’s confidence.

Ignoring Attention Cues 

Your rabbit will push, lick, or nip your hand to get your attention. This is something that should not be overlooked.

Ignoring Attention Cues

To grab your attention, it will push, lick, or nip your hand. This is an important point to keep in mind.

Cleaning Their Enclosure 

Cleaning your rabbit’s hutch is a good thing to do. However, it may not perceive it that way. Cleaning their enclosure could be seen as an intrusion of their domain by many rabbits.

Petting a Different Animal 

Rabbits are demanding, sometimes insecure, and possibly jealous creatures. Your rabbit will not appreciate it if you have been playing with another animal.

Not Sharing Your Food or Dinner 

If your rabbit is allowed to run free, it will most likely be interested in your dinner. Rabbits, on the other hand, cannot eat most human foods. Your rabbit will be completely unaware of the situation.

 

How Do Rabbits Apologize to Humans?

When your rabbit has done you wrong, they are typically aware of it. This generally occurs when they hurt you accidentally. Rabbits express their regret to humans through their actions and body language

Here are the ways in which rabbits apologize to their human.

Grooming

When your rabbit licks and nibbles on your fingers, foot, or arm in an attempt to groom you, he’s typically attempting to gain your attention. If they detect your grief or displeasure, this is a frequent response. 

To Apologize, They Rub Their Heads Against You

The majority of bunnies like having their heads stroked. Your rabbit will brush their heads and noses against you when he or she wants to apologize and reconnect with you. It’s how they express their love and devotion for you.

Circling Around You 

Circling you, like binkying, is a method to gain your attention and apologize. I believe it’s also a method of identifying you as their person.

two rabbits

 

Frequently Asked Questions

I Took My Bunny to the Vet, He Is Mad at Me. How Long Will My Bunny Be Mad at Me?

Every rabbit is unique. Your rabbit may easily carry a grudge against you for several hours, if not days. Giving him some alone time and treats is the greatest way to apologize. Sit on the floor and wait for them to come over before giving him a treat. Allow him to determine the pace.

Why Do My Rabbits Fight Then Kiss and Make Up, Then Fight Again?

Bonded rabbits seldom fight, although this does happen. If this occurs, separate them for a day before reuniting them. They are apologizing to one other by rubbing their heads. If they continue to fight, separate them for an extended length of time. They may need to re-bond as a result of this.

 

Final Thoughts

Rabbits, like humans, have healthy emotions.  They get mad at other rabbits but know how to apologize by rubbing their heads. 

Rabbits are also known to harbor grudges and might be upset with you for several days or hours. Prepare to apologize if your bunny turns his back on you and ignores you.

Rabbits are also aware of the obligation to apologize to you. They will groom you, run around in circles at your feet, and press their nose or head on you.

 

 

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Sarah Logan

Sarah Logan is the Editor here at The Bunny Hub. Sarah is a long-time bunny lover having kept pet rabbits since early childhood. With over 35 years of experience caring for fluffy-tailed, lop-eared friends, Sarah wanted to create a space dedicated to providing expert advice on not only general care, but proper nutrition, and, the best products and accessories every serious owner needs. Here you will find everything you need to make informed decisions in all aspects of becoming a proud rabbit owner. We do all the hard work for you. We research and test out the latest products, then we tell you about our discoveries. From choosing the right breed of bunny for your family, to making purchases you won’t regret for the important things like a hutch for your fur baby to live in. We’re here to make sure you have all the information you need to give your bunny and happy and healthy life.

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