Why Do Rabbits Thump? What Are They Trying To Tell You? | Kidadl


Why Do Rabbits Thump? What Are They Trying To Tell You?

Arts & Crafts
Learn more
Reading & Writing
Learn more
Math & Logic
Learn more
Sports & Active
Learn more
Music & Dance
Learn more
Social & Community
Learn more
Mindful & Reflective
Learn more
Outdoor & Nature
Learn more
Read these Tokyo facts to learn all about the Japanese capital.

Thumping among rabbits is a behavior that has been found to occur even when they are in the wild.

A rabbit or a bunny thumps its hind legs for a variety of reasons. This is quite often portrayed in their body language when they feel like they might be in some sort of dangerous situation or they smell something dangerous.

Rabbits are amazing pets and every bunny owner will let you know this. These extremely cute and small animals are equally bright and active. This is why a lot of people love having them around the house but they do come with a lot of maintenance and effort. To ensure that your rabbit is living a comfortable life, pay close attention to the things they do because these are a sign of your pet trying to communicate to you since they don't make a lot of vocal noises. Thumping is one such behavior that is a natural reaction and rabbits thump their rear feet for many reasons. Some pet rabbits are believed to thump with a single foot while others will thump with both their feet.

In the wild, the wild rabbits were constantly in the face of danger with predators like wolves, foxes, raccoons, and birds of prey lurking above them. Hence why wild rabbits are known to move in groups for safety purposes just like how deers do. This is because the larger the group, the easier it is to locate any danger or threat. As soon as a threat or predator is identified, the rabbits will begin to thump their feet rapidly as a response to danger. The stomping of their feet is to warn or alert their family or other rabbits that are underground when a threat is nearby.

You'll be surprised to learn that apart from fear, rabbits will also thump out of annoyance and even when they want something from you, especially your attention. The thumping noise can be loud so you'd have no option but to take notice of them and meet their demands. When you are petting your rabbit or cuddling them, putting them down too soon will also cause them to thump loudly but with anger. Any loud noise, like dogs barking or construction work, can trigger your pet rabbit's thumps too. When we say danger, it could mean anything. What might not be dangerous to you could be quite dangerous to your pet rabbit. You will also find your pet rabbit thumping when it's excited.

A recent report in the Daily Mail claimed that a rabbit thumped so loudly that it scared off a burglar and prevented a burglary that could have maybe taken place! So you best believe that rabbits work very well as night guards too. A lot of rabbit owners have also reported hearing sounds of their rabbit thumping frequently at night. If you are a new rabbit owner, this is very normal but something that can stress you initially. The thumps that take place are mostly done out of boredom or the rabbit's need to get your attention. At times, your rabbit will also thump its rear feet when changes have been made to its living environment or the cage in which it is placed.

Therefore, it is always best to not make too many changes to their cages or space. Placing or removing new items from their environment can make them quite anxious and the rabbits will begin thumping, with their ears alert to show that they are uncomfortable with this new change. Again, rabbits are similar to humans in terms of their mood. Some rabbits are very relaxed while others may be constantly on edge and may get frightened easily too. If you hear the sound of your pet rabbit thumping too much at night, make sure to get your pet to the nearest vet to treat them because too much thumping can also indicate that your pet rabbit is experiencing some sort of pain or injury.

If you liked this article on why rabbits thump, check out these articles to learn some fun facts that answer why do squirrels shake their tails and why do hamsters run on wheels!

Do all types of rabbits thump?

Yes, all rabbits thump and it is quite common among them. Rabbits portray some unique and interesting behavioral features. These fluffy and adorable creatures communicate through their body language much more than they do vocally.

At times, rabbit owners do take a long time in trying to understand what they're trying to communicate to them. But over time, it is eventually learned. They thump both their feet or sometimes, just a single foot for a variety of reasons. However, although thumping is a behavioral characteristic that occurs in all bunnies, it occurs more frequently in some than others. Rabbits thump their feet when they are scared or afraid, angry, annoyed, bored, when they need your attention or are in any sort of pain. In their natural environment, rabbits often gather in small groups. They do this because being in a group makes it easier for them to locate dangerous predators.

When a rabbit locates a predator nearby, it will begin to thump its feet as a warning to other rabbits that are close or to alert its family underground. The thumps of a rabbit can be quite loud, meaning that the sound resonates underground too! This stomping behavior takes place even in a domesticated rabbit. Pet rabbits take quite some time in adjusting to new environments. It is very important that you stick to a consistent routine as well so as to not make your pet rabbit uncomfortable.

Being cute and adorable aren't the only things your pet rabbit or bunny is good at. Rabbits also make wonderful night guards. A recent report that came out in 2013 claimed that the thumping sound of a rabbit managed to chase away burglars from the home! This is why if you're a new rabbit owner, you'd find your pet rabbit thumping away at night. This behavior is quite common in them so there's nothing to be worried about.

Does it hurt them?

Rabbits thumping usually does not pose any problem and it doesn't hurt them in any way. Although the behavior of thumping can be common in rabbits, excessive thumping in rabbits can cause some fatal reactions and maybe even death if it becomes extreme.

It can die from an intense level of stress and agitation. It could also mean that they're either hurting somewhere or injured. Always look out for cues in their behavior so that you can identify when the thumps mean danger. As soon as you sense something is wrong, get your rabbit to the nearest vet to treat it. Make sure that the cage in which you place your rabbit is not in a place or room where there are loud noises. The rabbit would perceive it as a potential source of danger and begin thumping. The large ears of these adorable creatures make it very easy to pick up even the faintest of noises. Sometimes, when rabbits or bunnies are scared or afraid, their ears become alert.

A rabbit never thumps its hind legs for no reason. It's always something in their environment that agitates them. Anything new can be perceived as a danger to them. There have been cases where rabbits have thumped themselves to death, just by stomping. A rabbit is very good at hiding its pain and masking its injuries but a few bunnies also thump their foot to show you that they're experiencing some sort of pain. Rabbits are also afraid of cats and dogs so make sure to always keep your bunny close to you and make sure it is comfortable.

Remove anything or any sound that could instill a sense of fear in them. Anything that could smell strange can also signal warning bells in your bunny. Even when it's angry, you will notice your pet rabbit thumping, and when you approach it, it may bite. As a result, crouch to the ground and talk gently to your rabbit in a reassuring tone and soon, your rabbit will snuggle up to you. Rabbits are also known to thump loudly at night and it can be quite disturbing when you've had a long day and want to rest. Therefore, if you wanna stop or control your rabbit's thumping all night long, make sure to develop a routine and stay consistent with it as these small and cute animals don't do well with change.

Beautiful white rabbit chewing grass.

What does it mean when rabbits thump their back feet?

A rabbit will thump its hind legs or even just a single foot at the back for a variety of reasons. Almost every mood in a rabbit will cause it to thump its foot. It can be happy, sad, annoyed, irritated, angry, stressed, or even in fear and your pet rabbit will still thump.

As prey animals, thumping is a response to danger usually innate or natural in a rabbit when it is in its warren or burrows and is trying to warn other rabbits of a potential threat or predator. This is why you see it in your rabbit very often. It is only a response to what they feel is a threat or something that causes them to feel fear. Certain sounds, noises, smells, and even when they hear the noise of a cat or dog in the room can trigger the response of thumping or stomping in your bunny. So the key is to learn when your rabbit thumps and what makes your rabbit thump too.

How do rabbits make a thump noise?

If you pay close attention to the way your pet rabbit is thumping, you will notice that it will take a special position or posture when your rabbit thumps.

Usually seen as a sign of discomfort, your bunny friend will look tense and alert, with an arched back, as it thumps until the particular threat has been removed from its environment. It is trying to tell you or is warning you that he or she can sense some danger. If you own other pets as well like a cat or a dog, make sure that your bunny rabbit is not placed in the same room as them. They can imitate the thumping behavior which can further agitate your rabbit.

Similarly your dog or cat can also get stressed out by the thumping of your rabbit so it is important to keep them separate. At times, you will hear that the thumps can be quite loud as if something that is heavy has fallen onto the floor. Some rabbits will thump on the ground with both feet but others will thump with only a single foot. But both these actions could mean different things again!

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly facts for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for why do rabbits thump then why not take a look at why do beavers build dams interesting facts or why do

The Kidadl Team is made up of people from different walks of life, from different families and backgrounds, each with unique experiences and nuggets of wisdom to share with you. From lino cutting to surfing to children’s mental health, their hobbies and interests range far and wide. They are passionate about turning your everyday moments into memories and bringing you inspiring ideas to have fun with your family.

Read The Disclaimer

Was this article helpful?