How to pick up a bunny without getting scratched?

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By Jan Reisen

What is the safest way to pick up a rabbit?

Correctly picking up and holding a bunny

To properly pick up a rabbit, place one hand under the rabbit’s front armpits, place your other hand on the rump near the hind end, lift and hold the rabbit securely to your body. Make sure you are supporting the rabbit’s back at all time.

Is it OK to pick up a rabbit by the scruff of its neck?

Rabbits should never be picked up by their ears or by the scruff of their neck. Some people might also hold their rabbits on their back in a “hypnotised” or “tranced” state, where they go really still.

Does it hurt when you grab Bunnies by the ears?

Rabbits should not be picked up by the scruff of their neck; proper gentle handling should be used instead. Appropriate handling will be safer and less distressing to the rabbit. A rabbit must never be lifted or held by the ears. This is distressing, painful, and cruel, and can also damage the ears.

Does scruffing hurt a rabbit?

Scruffing is what happens when a hawk or raccoon has you in her grasp and is about to make you her supper. Thus scruffing is both painful and terrifying. When placed back on the ground, Bunny may attempt to get away as she would from any predator.

What is the proper way to pick up a rabbit?

Hold rabbits gently but firmly – ensure one hand supports their back and hindquarters at all times. Help them feel secure by holding all four feet against your body. Never pick rabbits up by their ears – this would be extremely stressful and is highly likely to injure them.

Can you pick rabbits up by their skin?

Gently use the loose skin behind the rabbit’s neck to hold onto its scruff. Do not pick the rabbit up by the scruff alone, but use this as a handle to prevent forward motion while you use your other hand arm to tuck the hind legs under the bunny and scrunch the bunny in a gentle “bunny ball.”

Where should I not touch my rabbit?

The best places to pet a rabbit are their forehead and behind their ears. The cheeks and strokes down their backs are also good spots. But rabbits dislike being pet on their bottom, feet, chin, and underside.

Is it OK to scruff a rabbit?

What to avoid – bunny etiquette. Rabbits should never be picked up by their ears or by the scruff of their neck. Some people might also hold their rabbits on their back in a “hypnotised” or “tranced” state, where they go really still.

Why shouldn’t you scruff a rabbit?

After babyhood, Bunny loses the “freeze” reflex and may struggle and hurt herself trying to get free when restrained. Scruffing is what happens when a hawk or raccoon has you in her grasp and is about to make you her supper. Thus scruffing is both painful and terrifying.

Does it hurt rabbits to pick them up by the scruff of the neck?

Never, ever, pick up your rabbit by the ears or scruff of the neck. You’ll hurt them and can cause permanent damage. You want your bunny to be well supported and held firmly, which helps them feel safe.

Can you pick a rabbit up by its skin?

Never pick your rabbit up by its ears. This will traumatize your bunny, and can cause severe injury. Never pick your rabbit up by the scruff, that is, by the loose skin at the back of its neck. Never pick up your rabbit up by one leg.

Should rabbits be Scruffed?

There may be a rare situation where it is necessary to restrain a jumpy or aggressive rabbit by the scruff to avoid injury. However, it is important to remember that holding a rabbit by the scruff can be stressful and so should be avoided unless absolutely necessary.

Do rabbits like neck scratches?

They put their head on the ground and close their eyes in contentment. They also love getting a good back scratch around the shoulders. That said, they tend not to like being touched on the ears, neck, feet, stomach or tail.

Why should you not scruff a rabbit?

Rabbits do not carry their young around like a mother cat, nor do rabbits have the same kind of anatomy as a cat. When you lift a rabbit from the scruff, the skin is torn loose from the muscle, causing discomfort. Being picked up by the neck also mimics predators such as hawks and foxes.

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