Rabbit Focus

Do Rabbits Get Lonely If One Dies?

Rabbits are cute fluffy balls that can easily melt your heart away. However, whether you like it or not, sooner or later, you have to bid goodbye to your dear pet rabbits. Death may be expected sometimes but other times, it may suddenly happen out of the blue.

Do Rabbits Get Lonely If One Dies?

Everyone deals with grief and deal with loss in different ways. But how about rabbits? Do rabbits get lonely if one dies?

Sadly, rabbits will also grieve if they are left behind by their bonded mate. And when this happens, your surviving pet needs you to help him through the grief. Yes, rabbit grief is indeed very real.

Read on below to learn more about the grief cycle of rabbits.

Why Do Bunnies Grieve?

Before anything else, it is important to know that your rabbit can act almost like a human when it comes to some social characteristics and emotions. The action of grieving or grief is among these situations. It will be a big shock and a huge blow for your bunny if it loses a rabbit mate or a rabbit friend.

A pet rabbit in captivity can live for 8 to 12 years. If you have had the two rabbits throughout this duration, likely, they have already formed a close and strong bond between them over this period. They played, cuddled, groomed each other, and so much more. For rabbits, losing their mate just feels like how humans lose their best friends or even their lovers.

This depression may feel very devastating and real and must never be taken lightly at all. The point here is that things can be very complicated for your rabbit throughout the process.

As the owner, it is also important that you understand what will happen in the nearby future as well as the things you can do to help your pet during this grieving process.

If you fail to do these things, it might lead to depression in your rabbit, or your pet may even become ill and eventually die as a result.

How to Help Rabbits Overcome Grief

Since rabbits can have very human-like feelings and emotions, some of the ways to help them deal with grief are also similar to how humans overcome the grieving process.

Here are the things you can do to ensure that your rabbit doesn’t get too lonely if its friend or mate dies:

Let Rabbits Say Their Goodbyes

Now, this one might sound a bit strange but try to think of it as the same as human funerals. Your rabbit wants and needs this chance for his companion or event. To do this, give your bunny a chance to spend some time with the body of the deceased rabbit.

This might be a bit horrible to watch mainly out of emotions since your bunny won’t understand right away whatever is happening. However, you might spot your surviving rabbit going near the body of the deceased one and doing a few things such as:

  • Groom or lick the body of the deceased rabbit
  • Run in circles or hop around the deceased rabbit
  • Push or nudge the body of the deceased rabbit
  • Sniff the dead rabbit’s body

Help Your Rabbit Understand What’s Really Happening

The actions stated above can help your bunny understand and realize that there is something amiss. Your rabbit will initially not understand that his friend already passed away. However, after 3 to 6 hours of such actions, the rabbit will finally get the picture that the other bunny no longer responds to the actions and is already dead.

Not giving your rabbit enough time to undergo this process may lead to some devastating effects. Your surviving rabbit might endlessly wander around the play area or house looking for his mate. Once he doesn’t succeed in finding the deceased one, your rabbit may turn frantic which can ultimately lead to depression.

Your surviving rabbit may wonder where his best friend went and why he cannot find her no matter where he looks. Such thoughts will run around the mind of the surviving rabbit if you don’t give him enough time to grieve and say goodbye.

Keep a Close Eye on Your Rabbit After the Tragedy

You need to continue monitoring the situation even if you have given your pet enough time to grieve and bid goodbye. You also need to remember that just like humans, rabbits are also different and unique, dealing with stuff in their own way. In this case, rabbits are unique creatures. Some of them might not even eat and become lethargic or motionless after the death of a fellow rabbit friend or mate.

Other rabbits may also start to chew door trims and finish around the house more than usual or may also get angry towards you. This is perfectly fine. After all, you will also be angry and upset during the process so the best you can do is try to understand what is happening. The most important thing to keep an eye on is to ensure that your rabbit doesn’t lose any appetite or the want or need to consume fluids.

It is at this point when things may become risky for your bunny if you don’t actively monitor the situation. If you aren’t too careful, tragedy may even hit you the second time around.

Strengthen and Increase Your Bonding Time

This process of grieving presents the perfect chance for you and your rabbit. This is the time when you should become a more compassionate and caring pet owner. You must feel sad over the death of your other rabbit together with your surviving one. It might be safe to assume that they can sense it.

This is when you should try squeezing some spare time out of your schedule to shower your surviving bunny with lots of love and assist him with overcoming the depression or sadness he is going through. Even just a few minutes can really go a long way in this case.

Let Your Rabbit Make New Friends or Find a New Mate

This might sound a bit cliché, but this is just how things go here. A new friend can cheer up your surviving rabbit. Some even claim that it is better if you do this sooner. It may be among the only effective means to help your bunny go out of depression. Bunnies, like humans, also need to move on with their lives.

Rabbits do get lonely if one dies so always be there right by their side to support them during the grieving process.

And with that, we officially end this blog post. But before you go, can you do us a solid and spread the love (or laughter) by sharing this on your social media? Who knows, maybe we might even find someone who can relate to our content and benefit from it... Wink