Can rabbits be jealous?
That rabbits can be jealous, that is reported again and again by rabbit owners. We are not really surprised, because rabbits have a social behavior that allows them to live in a pack. However, should we say goodbye to the idea that a rabbit can show affection to a human?
Man and animal
One thing is for sure, many people and maybe you too, try to humanize their pets. This almost always happens unconsciously and through your own feelings, you think that a rabbit must react the same way as a human. However, I do not believe that you chase your partner through the apartment in front of you and only give peace when he has crawled away.
This simply be a small example of where differences exist. Also, the hierarchy in a partnership that a human enters into will not be as pronounced as it is in rabbits. However, even with the rabbits by living together in the group are almost certainly feelings in the game. One likes one more, the other less. But is a rabbit jealous?
Animal owners tend to transfer their own feelings to the animal and interpret them as it might be with a human. So if the rabbit behaves jealously, similar to a human, then jealousy is interpreted.
Rabbit jealous what pet owners observe
From stories of our acquaintances and friends who keep rabbits, it can be heard again and again that individual animals behave jealously when they do not get enough attention. Especially when you are busy with a conspecific of yours. The reactions to this can include anything from looking strange, to growling, to biting the conspecific.
However, we cannot prove whether the rabbit is jealous or whether it is just annoyed that the human being does not deal with it. Because feelings cannot be measured and therefore we must speculate here.
Rabbit owners with whom we have talked about this, partly believe that this is mainly about ranking. Because two rabbits, which normally get along excellently, become aggressive in the situation where a human is occupied with only one. Sometimes they do not even stop at the human's hand and bite into it.
In rabbits that live together in pairs, this behavior is almost always observed in only one animal. This supports the thesis that this is about ranking and not about jealous rabbits.
Rabbits jealous of people?
It has almost never been observed that a rabbit is also jealous of a human. When this happens, a common reason is that this person is new to the community. For example, two people move in with each other, or a baby joins the living group. This does not necessarily involve the rabbit being jealous, but rather getting to know the newcomer first.
Because often the aggressive behavior of rabbits is an uncertainty, because they do not know what to expect from this new person. Rabbits are often fearful, but can also be aggressively anticipatory. Especially with children this behavior is more common. Here you should be careful that the child does not inadvertently touch your rabbit roughly or simply overwhelms it.
Because then it can bite to get out of the situation and look for a safe place. Here you can in no case speak of a rabbit being jealous. It is rather the case that it displays such behavior out of fear or excessive demands.
Jealous rabbits - Conclusion
Never forget that your animals also have a variety of feelings, but these often look and are lived differently than in humans. Therefore, be sure, a rabbit has feelings, but you should be careful not to humanize your animals too much.
Garden animal - A life with nature
Welcome to my animal blog! My name is Dirk and I am happy to take you on my journey through the fascinating world of animals and gardening.
Born 54 years ago, I have had an insatiable curiosity for the animal world around me since childhood. Although I have moved professionally in other industries, my true passion has always been animals and nature. It is remarkable how a small garden has become such an important part of my life.
Many of my fondest memories are associated with the animals that share our home. Whether it's the curious squirrels that scurry across the trees in the morning, the colorful variety of birds that visit our feeders, or the busy bees and butterflies that pollinate our flowers, every moment with them is invaluable to me.
This blog is my contribution to share my experiences, discoveries and insights with like-minded people. Here I will share stories of unforgettable encounters with animals, give tips on gardening and creating wildlife-friendly habitats, and take you on my journeys through nature.
Thank you so much for being here!
Dirk aka garden animal