Rabbits are clean and well organized by nature and spend hours setting up their space to their liking. This unique behavior often includes scooting their bedding around and making the perfect nest for a nap.
Bunny behavior seems odd to us, but it’s just another day of doing rabbit things for them. Why do rabbits move their bedding?
Rabbits move their bedding because they are looking for a more comfortable and safe feeling nest. Often times rabbits will move bedding to get your attention, or because they are upset you touched their stuff to change the bedding. Organizing their homes for the ideal sleep and set up to feel very personal and secure is an ordinary rabbit activity.
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Why Does My Rabbit Keep Moving Her Bedding
It may seem weird or even compulsive when your rabbit moves her bedding over and over.
However, she has a goal with all the reorganizing, and if you pay close attention to her actions, you will often figure out what it is. Bedding organization is part of a rabbit’s instincts.
Not all bedding moves happen for the same reason. Rabbits are very bright and usually have an underlying motive behind their seeming silliness.
Below are 8 reasons why rabbits move their bedding and what each one means:
1 – Bunching
Bunching is often reserved for blankets and other cloth items around the house. However, your pet may do this to their bedding as well. Rabbitwise defines the behavior succinctly, “Bunching: Pushing, pulling, and biting bed linens, towels, pillows.
Translation: “I like to organize until everything is just right.”
2 – Boredom
Rabbits need to be entertained. Even if your pet isn’t especially lovey and interactive with you, they still want to play.
Bunnies need challenges and novel experiences, and lots of toys and things to chew on. Without these things, they aren’t going to be happy and thrive, so they do whatever they can to occupy their own time and amuse themselves.
When moving the bedding fulfills a need to do stuff, your pet needs more toys. Get them a ball or some (rabbit safe) sticks.
Bunnies often like stuffed toys and baby toys that make little noises. Engage them with regular rabbit enrichment activities and the compulsive bedding movement should calm down.
3 – Attention Seeking
When was the last time you played with your rabbit? If they like a cuddle or want to chase you, then messing around with things in their habitat is often the best way to get some attention.
However, rabbits will also thump and act out in other ways when they want you to do something for or with them, so pay close attention to how they behave when you come into the room. After all, rabbits are social animals.
4 – Getting Comfortable
Having a fur coat means being hot in summer and warmer in winter. However, spoiled house bunnies like to move over near a source of warm air or a cool breeze to stay more comfortable.
Your pet might drag the bedding to a spot that offers them some accommodations that the previous location lacked.
5 – Practical Organizing
Rabbits in nature have to worry about predatory animals all the time. Domesticating them hasn’t stopped the instincts inside their bunny brains. Some bedding moving is all about keeping their pathways clear.
Your rabbit is safe in your home, but their more profound nature still tells them that they may need to move through the area where the bed is quick to escape someday, so they push it out of the way.
6 – For Quiet & Security
Rabbits are not fond of loud noises or bright lights. They prefer a nice, softly lit space where they can feel calm ns stay away from anxiety-provoking chaos.
Especially in homes with kids and other pets, a rabbit can get scared and stressed by the daily commotion.
If your rabbit searches out a quieter corner, where they are out of easy reach, then it’s probably the most peaceful spot.
As intelligent prey animals, rabbits prefer to stay out of the way of anything too active and changeable.
They enjoy playing, but only when they feel safe from anything scary predators might do. They still have wild instincts, even as domestic pets.
7 – Territorial Tantrum
When you think of your rabbit moving their bedding, ask yourself if it always happens at the same time.
More importantly, do they move it violently, with lots of kicking and thumping right after you change it and clean the cage? If so, you aren’t dealing with a bedding issue. Instead, you are dealing with an attitude problem.
Rabbits aren’t as openly territorial as some pets. Yet they do feel possessive over their space. If you have a more dominant bunny, they could get mad when you take the old bedding. It’s theirs.
Naturally, you can’t stop changing their cage, but you can talk to your vet about how to handle their tantrums and provide the right kind of security to help them quit.
8 – Normal Nesting
Is your rabbit new to their home? As Ochams Razor reminds us, the most straightforward answer is usually correct. A rabbit in a new home needs to make their bed.
Moving things around a few times is like their version of moving the couch around the living room of a new house. They want the best, most comfortable spot.
Helpful Tips To Know About Why Rabbits Move Their Bedding
Rabbits can have many different reasons for moving their bedding, but it usually boils down to the need for more comfort and personalization.
Just as humans tend to set up their beds with the right amount of pillows, mattress firmness and linens, airflow and heat, so do rabbits. They just use a different material to get the results they like best.
Here are more helpful tips to know about why rabbits move their bedding.
- While rabbits are natural organizers, they all have unique personalities, and some are tidier than others. A rabbit may move their bedding simply because it suits them or makes the enclosure comfortable. However, rabbits that get too bored may also mess up their hutch, like a kid making a mess in their room.
- Rabbits can also decide to move their hay around. Most of the time, you’ll find it mixed in with their bedding. Whether this is for midnight snacking or not, it’s called nesting.
- A rabbit who doesn’t like their bedding will also shove it around. Your pet may push some bedding out of their bed or even out of a cage or other enclosure if they don’t like it.
When your rabbit picks up her bedding and suddenly kicks it around, it looks like a tantrum because it is. Likewise, when she seems only to move things if you’re looking right at her, then she’s probably trying to get your attention.
Sometimes you can figure out the cause simply by inspecting the new sleeping area, which might be in the path of a fan in summer or nearer to a heating vent in winter.
The hardest to understand is boredom. Luckily, a few enrichment activities and new toys will solve that problem quickly once you’ve eliminated other probable causes.
Try not to worry too much over bunny bedding relocations but do pay attention to what they mean in case your pet needs something from you.