If you’ve lost your pet rabbit that can be an extremely worrisome situation. No one likes the idea of their beloved pet being lost or in danger. Rabbits are very curious creatures and unfortunately find opportunities to explore outside their home, which can result to them getting lost.
Your pet rabbit will not return home if you do not do things to attract your rabbit’s attention back to your location. Your rabbit will not know which direction to go or how to return home. Rabbits rely more on their other senses, rather than their eyesight when navigating.
We want your rabbit to get back to you as soon as possible. Here we are going to explain why your rabbit might have run away, potential dangers your rabbit could face, and how to get your pet rabbit to come back home quickly and safely.
Why Did My Rabbit Escape?
There are several potential reasons why your rabbit could’ve escaped such as curiosity or unhappiness.
- Curiosity – Rabbits love exploring new environments and places. Your rabbit is still comfortable with you, it’s just ready to explore different places too.
- Unhappiness – Your rabbit could’ve run away because it was unhappy with the environment, they were in. If you’re not meeting the rabbit’s needs, or your rabbit is bored, that’s a likely reason that it ran away.
- Spooked – Your rabbit might have been frightened by something which may have led them to run away quickly.
ARE YOU KEEPING YOUR RABBIT OUTDOORS?
If you are, this drastically increases the chances that your rabbit will escape. I have personal experience with the difficulties in keeping a rabbit outdoors and I’ve made many mistakes along the way. See my guide on how to keep a pet rabbit outside here so you don’t make the same mistakes I did.
Will My Rabbit Come Back Home?
The answer to the question lies completely in the situation. It all depends on how you treat your rabbit, and your rabbit’s trust in you, its owner.
If your rabbit is simply just curious and wants to explore the outside world, it’s most likely that it will return home, or try to return home. Once your curious rabbit escapes, your rabbit will start to realize that it may be in danger and will want to come back home to safety.
If your rabbit was unhappy in your home or bored, they are most likely running away from the situation, and unfortunately won’t return home. They are trying to get far away from an area that they don’t enjoy and took an opportunity to escape when they could.
If your rabbit was frightened when it ran away, it will try its best to return home. She may run far away before she calms down realizes she’s okay. Then your rabbit will realize that it doesn’t know where it is and proceed with caution to try to find its way back home.
What Dangers Will My Rabbit Face in the Outside World?
- Weather– Rabbits are very sensitive and can die if they are placed in harsh weather conditions for unnecessary amounts of time. If it is hot outside, your rabbit may die from heatstroke.
- Large predators– Rabbits have many predators and are in danger if there’s a snake, coyote, or wild cat around.
- Busy roads and traffic– Rabbits do not sense cars in the road and hop wherever they want to. This can lead to a lot of danger for the rabbit, especially because it’s domesticated and has never crossed a road before.
- Hunger– Domesticated rabbits do not know how to sustain themselves and will not know where or how to find food. Your rabbit may eat grass but eating grass from random areas is dangerous for a rabbit because it could potentially have pesticides on it, which can be extremely harmful. They also won’t know where to find water.
What Can I Do to Help My Rabbit Return Home Safely?
You should never rely on your rabbit to my it home by itself. It’s a good idea that you go out a look for it the best you can. There are a few things that you can do to help lead your pet rabbit back home.
- Start searching – Once you notice your pet rabbit is gone, you want to start searching for your lost rabbit immediately. The longer you wait, the further away your pet rabbit may roam.
- Set a trap – There are rabbit and small rodent traps you can rent or purchase to help you catch your pet. Make sure to buy one that is not going to hurt or kill your rabbit as some traps are made for this purpose when people go hunting. Putting a favorite treat in the trap will help attract your pet.
- Look everywhere – There are several places your pet rabbit could be hiding. You can try looking under cars, in bushes, parks, and prairies. Try asking your neighbors if they’ve seen it in the garage or yard.
- Let people know – Let everyone know that you are missing your pet rabbit by putting up flyers and maybe even posting it on social media. The more eyes you have, the more likely you’ll find your rabbit.
- Appeal to rabbits’ senses – Rabbits rely more on their senses rather than their eyesight. You can learn more about how rabbits see in my article How Good Is a Rabbit’s Eyesight? Myths vs. Facts. Try to tempt her into coming near you by appealing to her senses of smell and hearing. You can try playing music or placing a long trail of treats near your home.
Making Sure Your Rabbit Doesn’t Run Away
We hope that you find your rabbit, and it is safe and sound back in its home. It’s probably safe to say that you don’t want your rabbit to ever run away again. There are a few things you can do to make sure your rabbit stays where it’s supposed to be.
- Keep your rabbit indoors – It’s recommended that you keep your rabbit indoors so that they can avoid illness and heatstroke from hot weather. If you keep your rabbit indoors, it is also less likely that you will lose your rabbit.
- Build your rabbit’s trust – Your rabbit will be less likely to run away if it trusts you and is comfortable in its environment. Of course, there is always the chance of it escaping because of curiosity, but the chances are low.
- Rabbit-proof your gate – Build your gate high while also burying it at least 6 to 8 inches deep in the soil, keep objects away from it, and keep tempting vegetation at a distance. There are many other small tricks you can use to make your gate difficult for your rabbit to get through, see my article 12 Effective Ways to Rabbit-Proof a Gate for more.
- Repair holes in your yard – If your rabbit is an outdoors rabbit, it likely dug a hole when it escaped. Try your best to find any holes that are in your yard and repair the holes as best you can.
- Choose the best substrate for your rabbit’s run – There are many different substrates to use as flooring in a rabbit’s run, so make sure it’s something secure and difficult to dig. Concrete and grass seem to be the two options most first-time owners turn to, but are they the best. Find out here: Concrete vs. Grass: What Is Best for a Rabbit Run.