Taking care of your pet rabbit should be a great time. So many people love keeping rabbits as pets in their homes.
They’re cute pets that are generally rewarding to bond with and care for. You likely want to do your best to ensure that your rabbit is as happy as possible.
This is why you pay close attention to the things that your rabbit does. Have you noticed that your rabbit has been thumping a lot lately?
Why do rabbits thump? Is thumping an indication that something is wrong?
Continue reading to learn more about thumping in rabbits. This will give you a better idea of what is going on.
What is Thumping?
It’s important to make sure that everyone understands what thumping is before proceeding. Most rabbit owners likely know this already, but some new owners might not have heard the term yet.
Thumping is a term that describes rabbits “thumping” by lifting their rear feet and smacking them against the ground. This is something that rabbits do for many different reasons.
You might see a rabbit tiptoeing along and lifting its ears as if it’s listening to something. Next, you’ll see it start thumping suddenly.
It’s likely that you’re wondering why the rabbit is doing this. Thankfully, there are many possible explanations that you should know about.
Rabbits Thump to Warn Other Rabbits of Danger
In the wild, you’ll see rabbits thumping as a way to warn other rabbits in the area of danger. This is a sign to other rabbits that predators are nearby, or other sources of danger are lurking about.
So typically, rabbits are going to start thumping when they feel that there is danger. If your rabbit is thumping in your home, it’s not generally a good sign.
It could be mistaking something in your house as a potentially dangerous element. Sometimes it takes pet rabbits time to adjust and feel at ease in a new home.
If you notice that your rabbit thumps a lot, it’s something to pay attention to. You might need to try to make some changes to help your rabbit feel safe.
A little bit of thumping is considered to be normal, though. So you don’t need to be overly concerned if the rabbit occasionally thumps.
Sometimes Rabbits Thump When They’re Annoyed
It’s normal for rabbits to thump when they get annoyed, too. Some rabbits are going to thump when they get frustrated or annoyed more often.
There are a few types of “annoyance thumps” that you should be aware of. One involves the rabbit trying to get you to stop doing something.
For example, a rabbit might start thumping when it’s annoyed by something that you’re doing. These pets are known to dislike loud noises, and your rabbit might be trying to get you to shut up.
Another possibility is that your rabbit doesn’t like the way that you’re petting it. Rabbits like being petted, but they don’t like having their paws touched or their legs as a general rule.
Another type of annoyance thump is when a rabbit is trying to get you to do something. Perhaps the rabbit wants your attention, and it feels that you’re ignoring it.
The rabbit might be wanting you to pet it, but you’re going about your business instead. The thump could be a “Hey, acknowledge me” type of thump.
Do Rabbits Thump When They Are Happy?
No, rabbits are not known to thump when they are happy. You shouldn’t take thumping as a good sign.
People have the wrong idea about thumping. This could be because of the classic cartoon rabbit that made thumping a popular term so many years ago.
Thumping is generally something rabbits do when they feel scared or threatened. They might also thump out of annoyance.
No matter what, thumping is associated with negative things. It’s not something that is ever associated with positive feelings or actions.
So you need to pay attention when your rabbit is thumping. It’s a sign that something is amiss, and you might need to fix certain things.
Your rabbit might need more attention, or it might be scared of something in the house. It should be easy enough to figure things out once you start looking into it.
Why Does My Rabbit Thump at Night?
There are quite a few reasons why your rabbit might be thumping at night. They’re all pretty easy to figure out.
It’s very common for rabbits to thump at night because they’re scared. Certain things might scare rabbits at night, such as loud noises or the presence of other animals.
For instance, there might be cats or dogs outside that your rabbit can hear or sense. This might scare your rabbit enough to make it start thumping.
An ambulance might sound its siren in the middle of the night and scare your rabbit. This could make it thump.
So many different things might make the rabbit choose to thump. The rabbit may also thump if it gets annoyed by something.
A rabbit might thump merely to try to get your attention as well. Perhaps the rabbit feels that it needs something.
The rabbit might be too cold, and maybe it needs extra bedding. It might be good to check on the rabbit when you hear the thumping to ensure that all is well.
How Can You Keep Rabbits Quiet at Night?
The thumping at night will get a little bit annoying after a while. You just want to sleep for the night, and you want your rabbit to get a good night’s rest as well.
There are things you can do to make it more likely that the rabbit will be quiet through the night. One of the best ideas is to play with the rabbit and tire it out before nighttime.
Perhaps you can make an effort to play with the rabbit in the evening before bed. This will ensure that the rabbit is ready to sleep.
It’s also wise to try to make the area where the rabbit is sleeping as quiet as possible. Remove noisy things that will bother the rabbit and make it scared.
You should try to cover the rabbit’s cage to make things dark, too. The rabbit should feel safer if it’s in a covered space at night.
Most people cover the rabbit cage with a blanket at night. Simply doing this might be enough to get the rabbit to stay quiet throughout the night.
Of course, you might hear some thumping sometimes when random noises occur. There isn’t much you can do to keep the rabbit absolutely quiet.
If it bothers you a lot and keeps you from sleeping, you can try wearing earplugs. This might not be the safest thing to do at night, though.
You want to be able to hear smoke detectors and other sirens that will warn you of danger. So maybe just putting up with a little bit of thumping sometimes will be necessary.
Thumping is something that you don’t generally want to ignore. When rabbits thump, it’s usually a sign that they’re scared or stressed.
It could be that the rabbit is scared by something in your home. Rabbits don’t like loud noises, and they can feel threatened by other animals that they see as predators. So you might need to take steps to make the rabbit feel safer.
Thumping might also be done out of annoyance. Rabbits thump as a way to show they’re annoyed. They might do it to get you to stop doing something, or they might do it to get your attention.
They can use thumping in quite a few different ways, but it’s generally always negative. Thumping isn’t something these pets do when they’re happy.
Rabbits might thump at night when they get scared by something. Do your best to keep this to a minimum by tiring the rabbit out in the evening and covering the rabbit cage with a blanket.
Make good choices, and you should be able to keep thumping from becoming a big problem. Your rabbit will be happy in your home, and all will be well.
I have a bachelor’s degree in Film/Video/Media Studies, as well as an associates degree in Communications. I began producing videos and musical recordings nearly 15 years ago. I am a guitarist and bassist in Southwest MI and have been in a few different bands since 2009, and in 2012 I began building custom guitars and basses in my home workshop as well. When I’m home, I love spending time with my three pets (a dog, cat, and snake) and gardening in my backyard. I also like photographing wild birds, especially birds of prey.