If you are lucky enough to share your home with bunnies then you'll know that a rabbit's home truly is their castle. They love a place to call their own and just like in the wild, most indoor buns will defend, organize and maintain their personal space with valour, dignity and pride.
Surprisingly rabbits are very comfortable in the home. They can also create wonderful companionships with other pets in the household. It is not uncommon for rabbits to form bonds with cats, dogs and even birds and mice!
Having rabbits living with you in the home is the best way to really get to know their personalities. Every bunny is different and being up close and personal can be very rewarding as well as educational!
House bunnies become part of the family. You share so much time together that the relationship you have with your pet rabbits become similar to the relationships you have with your children or family relations.You really get to know them, and they really get to know you.
House rabbits are clever. They will cotton on to your routines, especially where food is involved and will anticipate your schedules.
They also know what you like and what you don't like.
I've had the pleasure of sharing my life with house rabbits and I will always choose to have my bunnies indoors rather than outdoors. I can say this because I've had both. I've watched, learned and documented how domestic rabbits are both in an indoor environment and an outdoor one.
I've noticed (in my 40+ years of being around rabbits) that rabbits form a strong bond with people they like and that treat them well. Take a look at the bunnies on the famous Japanese Rabbit Island and you'll see my point. They crave human contact.
They remember too. They remember faces, smells and personalities. So don't upset your rabbit, they sulk, like spoilt children. But don't worry, they don't hold a grudge for long :-)
However, I've also noted that some breeds actually prefer being outside, especially in warmer climates where an indoor environment is just too hot for them to regulate their temperature efficiently.
I think the longer a domestic pet rabbit lives with you, the better the relationship is between you both.
A rabbit learns and adapts to your schedules and routines!
But, it is important to establish ground rules from the start when you bring a rabbit into your home, and don't worry, a rabbit is a quick learner, just make sure they know you're the boss!
I remember fondly, my pet house rabbit 'Diesel', named so because of the brown trickle-shaped splodge down the front of his face. Now he was a clever house bunny. He used to wait at the bottom of the stairs at exactly 5.30 pm and await my arrival from work. (I had a friend stay for a few days and she informed me of his routine.)
He also knew to stay out of the spare room. I only had to say 'no' a certain way and he would stop dead in his tracks and change direction. He also knew when dinner was coming - usually after a certain TV program had finished. He'd be ready and waiting by the fridge door.
So, he knew me, and I knew him too. I knew he had a craving, an uncontrollable desire for all things 'cable'. He just couldn't help himself. I spent a fortune cladding all the wiring everywhere!
And yet, all bunnies being different, I had two house buns that only liked leather shoes and never touched cables. (My well-to-do friend was not impressed when he left my house after a coffee one afternoon - his Italian designer dress shoes were nibbled to destruction!)
I have a house bunny now that can go without those things. He's just not interested in anything you'd consider really naughty, but put a cardboard box anywhere in sniffing distance and he's got his nibbly-knashers into it like a starving piranha!
Some rabbit owners go all out and create home environments for their bunnies like they were their children, and why not?
The bunnies love it and the owners get immense pleasure from it.
Bring it on I say!
Look at that bunny - Come on, how happy?!
Understanding likes and dislikes, on both sides, is a bonus of having 'house-rabbits' in your life. The close interaction and consequential discoveries made thereof, are unique to the indoor habitat situation.
It is quite rare to have such a deep bond and intellectual understanding with pet rabbits that spend all their lives outdoors. You just don't spend as much time with them, and so much is missed, from both your perspective and the perspective of the bunnies outside.
N.B. Just remember though. Rabbits are natural foragers. Digging, nibbling grass and jumping around outside is all part of their natural behaviour pattern. Not letting them do what comes natural to them goes against the Animal Welfare Act, so please, please give your bunnies plenty of outdoor time!
You must have a bunny house craving now!
If this has made you want to get a rabbit, (it's made me want to get more just writing this :-) then please don't buy them from a store or even a breeder, adopt your bunnies from a rescue centre. There are thousands of bunnies desperate for forever homes right now, just around the corner from you! More super duper stuff on this here!
If you already have bunnies and want to share your story please do, we always love hearing about house rabbits and how they interact with other members of the family!
Do you have a great tale to tell?
Share your pet rabbit moments, past and present right here.
Anyone who has or loves rabbits also loves reading about them, so please share and don't forget to upload your photos.
If your bun has passed over the rainbow bridge, it's a lovely way to remember them too ;-)
Click below to see contributions from other visitors to this page...
When my 8 year old, French Lop, Betty developed arthritis, she required daily medication. We started taking her on holiday with us in our motorhome. …
Rabbits or Mice??
My rabbits, 'Furry' and 'Cuddly', are both males. When they were young I didn't know if their genders and since I didn't want them mating, I put them …
Rabbits Really Know Your Schedule
Rabbits really know your schedule lol... I have three house bunnies but my babies are my 2 white ones, Dora and Deigo. Lily just recently joined …
Share your views, points, tit-bits and tales! (Remember, you don't have to have a Facebook account to make a comment.)
All input is good, no matter how small ;-) Thank-you.