If you are interested in buying a rabbit, it is important that you know how to pick one up the correct way.

This is something that you need to approach carefully because otherwise you could get bitten.

There are numerous tips in this article that you will find helpful when it comes to picking up your bunny.

Why it is Important to Hold Your Rabbit

It is very important that you pick up and hold your rabbit on a daily basis. This physical interaction is suitable for your furry friend’s mental and physical health. If your rabbit isn’t getting enough stimulation on a regular basis, they can start acting out.

An under-stimulated rabbit can engage in all sorts of self-destructive behaviors, which can be a nightmare to deal with. Neglecting your rabbit will also harm the bond that you have with it. This time that you spend with them will serve to strengthen your connection in a very noticeable way.

When to Start Handling Your Rabbit

You will need to make a point of picking up and handling your rabbit at an early age. This will help them become comfortable with you as their owner. It is a crucial aspect of socializing your rabbit that you absolutely cannot neglect. You can start picking up your bunny a week or so after they are born.

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Make sure that the rabbit has become familiar with their surroundings before you try to pick them up. It can take a week or even two for these animals to really settle into their new environment. You will be able to tell when this happens.

Getting Your Rabbit to Come to You

Sometimes it can be a challenge to just get your rabbit to come over in their cage so you can pick them up. You can always try using a treat, but this is not a good method to use every single time. Giving your rabbit too many treats can make them fat and unhealthy.

Hold onto the scruff of the rabbit so it cannot bounce away while you position your other hand properly underneath it. Make sure that you have control of their hind legs before trying to pick them up.

girl pick up bunny

Look for Signs of Aggression

First you’ll want to look for any signs of aggression with your rabbit. You don’t want to try picking it up if you notice it acting aggressively. Many rabbits will thump their feet or even let out a screaming sound when they are uncomfortable.

If you are picking your rabbit up the wrong way, it will probably let out of a loud scream. This is a clear sign that you need to change your approach.

Be Calm and Quiet

It’s also important that you are completely calm when going to pick up your hamster. You should move slowly and deliberately to avoid startling your pet. Moving slowly will also reduce the chances of dropping your rabbit, which can result in them being injured.

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Swaddle Your Rabbit

If your rabbit seems very anxious or panicky while you are holding them, try swaddling them in a blanket. This has been known to relax these animals as they are being held. Remember to hold the rabbit firmly so it feels secure, but not so tight that they are uncomfortable.

girl hold rabbit

What NOT to do

There are a few things that you should never do when it comes to picking up a rabbit, such as:

  • Picking them up by their ears: You shouldn’t ever try picking your rabbit up by their ears. This will cause them a great deal of pain and could result in you getting bitten. Instead, wrap your hands around their sides while supporting their butt. Always use two hands when picking up one of these animals.
  • Put them on slick surfaces: You also shouldn’t put your rabbit down on any surface that they cannot easily walk and hop around on. This is only going to be frustrating and unpleasant for your furry friend.
  • Leave your children with them unsupervised: If you are going to let your small children handle the rabbit, make sure you are with them at all times. It is important that they know how to properly pick up and handle them.

Picking Your Rabbit up in their Cage

If you are picking your rabbit up when they are inside their cage, you’ll want to make sure their hind legs come out the door first. If the rabbit tries to get away from you, it will end up hopping back into their cage instead of falling down.

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Hold onto the scruff of the rabbit while pointing their head away from you. You also need to have a hand on the rabbit’s hindquarters to guide their legs as you take them out.

You can use the same method for getting a rabbit out of a carrier that opens up on the top. Keep in mind that you don’t want to pick them up by the scruff alone, as this can be quite painful for them.


  • It is very important to hold your rabbit on a regular basis, as these animals need interaction with their owners.
  • You can start handling a rabbit about a week after it has been born.
  • If you got your rabbit from a shelter, wait a little while until it has adjusted to its environment before trying to pick it up.
  • Make sure that you are gentle when going to pick up your furry friend. You should be very quiet and move your hands in a slow and deliberate manner.
  • If you are picking up your rabbit in a cage, you might have to lure it over with a treat.
  • Grab hold of your rabbit’s scruff and slide your hand underneath its body to get control of their rear legs.
  • You should never pick up your rabbit by its scruff alone.
  • Teach your children how to properly pick up and handle the rabbit so there aren’t any unfortunate accidents.
  • Look for common signs of aggression in your rabbit before attempting to pick it up.
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Hi! I'm Anna and I´m a certified cynologist (KAU, ACW). Expert, blue cross volunteer, owner of Chinese crested kennel "Salvador Dali" and breedless friend called Fenya. "I can't imagine my life without dogs and I totally support the idea #AdoptDontShop".