So many of us who own bunnies are not shy when we tell others why we love our rabbits so much, it’s because they’re incredibly cute, right? Compared to other pets, bunnies stand out because of their charming looks and behavior. Their tiny bodies, soft fur, and cute colors make them just so tempting to pet.
Why are bunnies so cute? Bunnies are widely perceived as cute due to the biological programming of humans that instinctually urges us to protect our own young. Animals that are small, scared, defenseless, and have many of the physical features that rabbits have appeal to this instinct.
According to a survey done in 2012 by the American Pet Products Association (APPA), 2.5 million households in the US share space with rabbits (source). It’s certainly fair to say that these cute pets are popular, by why? Because they’re incredibly cute!
A 2019 study showed that one reason is that pet rabbits have many of the same defining physical characteristics that baby humans have, such as flatter faces. These traits naturally appeal to our instincts to keep our own young safe (source). There are, however, many other reasons we bunny owners find our pets incredibly cute, and here are some of them.
1. They’re Meticulously Clean
One primary reason bunnies are cute is their cleanliness. They clean themselves in a similar way to dogs and cats. They have specially evolved tongues they use to clean themselves by licking their bodies.
For hard-to-reach areas like the ears, they’ll lick their front paws and glide them over the ears. Sometimes they’ll even clean one another as a sign of companionship.
Also, a well-trained bunny will hop into its hutch whenever nature calls. They don’t drop it just anywhere, so your house won’t stink of rabbit droppings. But of course, it’s always a good idea to stay on top of keeping the litter box clean regardless. I have some great tips on keeping a rabbit’s cage clean here that can really help with this.
2. Their Long, Soft Velvet Ears
Their soft, long ears make them cute and lovable. Others have short and lop ears which are also completely irresistible. The size and shape of their ears serve other purposes for the rabbit. In most cases, it’s easier to differentiate them by breed using their ears.
Why do bunnies have long ears?
Bunnies have long ears for many reasons such as helping them to detect sounds from potential predators, regulate body temperature, monitor space in tight areas, and communicate with other rabbits. Below are different rabbit breeds along with what type of ears they have.
|Long-Eared Breeds||Short-Eared Breeds||Lop Eared Breeds|
|Dutch Rabbit||Jersey Wooly||French Lop|
|New Zealand Rabbit||Dwarf Hotot||Holland Lop|
|Flemish Giant Rabbit||Netherland Dwarf||Mini Lop|
|Giant Angola||British Giant||American Fuzzy Lop|
|Florida White||Lionhead||English Lop|
3. They Remind Us of a Soft Toy
That’s right. Bunnies are cuddly; their big round eyes and whiskers make them absolutely adorable. When growing up, most people had dolls and toys that were surprisingly, just about as soft as rabbits are!
Bunnies are the most commonly kept pet animals, and their soft fur gives the best feeling you could ask for in a comfort object. This is the same reason children bond so tightly to, and find companionship in, their stuffed animals when they’re young. Soft feelings really do go a long way!
4. They’re Smart
Rabbits are not only cute; they’re intelligent animals. Rabbits can understand verbal commands if trained with proper rewards, such as training treats. For example, you can easily teach a rabbit to jump into your lap on command with a little practice.
Bunnies are dominant, strong-minded, and discerning so they often can decide not to do something. This creates a real sense of personality and individualism in a pet rabbit.
However, being intelligent means they can get bored easily, just like humans, so it’s important to frequently stimulate them physically and intellectually with toys and games.
5.They Wiggle Their Nose
Don’t you love how your bunny twitches its nose? Oh, and the tiny whiskers too! A rabbit twitches up to 120 times per minute when it’s frightened and just 20 times per minute when it’s calm. (source) All this twitching is beyond cute, but bunnies will twitch their nose for many other reasons too.
Here are more reasons rabbit’s wiggle their nose:
- To Regulate their Body Temperature: One reason rabbits twitch their nose is to regulate their body heat. Their heavy fur makes it hard for them to stay cool, so they breathe aggressively when they’re too hot to lower their internal temperature.
- To Breathe Easily: The twitching helps them bring in air to their respiratory system more efficiantly.
- To Boost their Sense of Smell: Bunnies have numerous olfactory receptors to foster their sense of smell. Twitching the nose exposes more of these receptors to the air that’s coming in, allowing them to get a better smell of the scents in the area.
6. They Know About Companionship
What makes them the cutest pets you can have is that they are capable of bonding with each other. For instance, they will often clean other rabbits as a sign of love.
They also do this as a sign of social interaction. Yes, bunnies are social animals, and they like living in pairs. They get stressed and bored when they live alone. This companion can be you, or another rabbit. This makes them incredibly easy to bond with and it’s certainly one very cute trait.
7. Their Different Cute Colors
Another reason that makes bunnies are cute is their different colors. Their colors range from white, blue, black, tan, lilac, orange, and others have patches of different colors. But among these colors, blue rabbits are the rarest. So, you can buy a rabbit that has your favorite color and it’s easy to see that rabbit as its own individual, with its own style and personality.
8. They’re Always Happy
Rabbits love jumping around all the time, and this definitely helps to make them incredibly cute. This is a sign they’re happy. Don’t you enjoy seeing them play “binky”? It’s so adorable. It seems like bunnies are never in a grim mood unless they’re sick or injured.
9. Their Soft Wool-Ball Tail
Another thing that makes bunnies cute to us humans is their wool-ball tail. They’re so soft and make the rabbits irresistible to pet. To make things even cuter, they also use their tail to groom themselves.
It’s one sweet thing to watch. However, they also use the tails to express their emotions. They’ll wag their tail when annoyed, frustrated or, bored as well. The more communicative an animal is, the more we humans find the animal cute.
10. There Are Many Different Species
There are various species of rabbits, all of different sizes and shapes. Also, they have extra hairs, which makes them some of the cutest pets you can get. Some have short fur while others are fluffy. Some have flatter faces and some with shorter faces. The more “individual” a pet seems, the easier it is to bond with it.
MDPI research published in 2019 says that rabbits with shorter and flatter faces have gained popularity over the years and are the most preferred.
11. Their Tiny Whiskers
The whiskers of these tiny pets make them incredibly cute. The whiskers may seem insignificant in the rabbit’s anatomy, but they play an essential role. They help them determine how far away an object is, how dense it is, and even whether a specific area is safe for them to hop into or not.
12. They’re Loving
Bunnies are loving, and it’s so adorable to watch them take care of one another, they will even take turns while cleaning each other! Although admittedly some rabbits won’t put as much effort into this as others, but it sure is cute watching a rabbit bury its head waiting for its partner to give them some attention.
They also show affection to their owners by licking and nibbling them or demanding a head rub. They’ll also often grind their teeth or lie down on their back and stretch out near you. This is one of the cute ways your bunny is showing you that you’re loved.
13. They Get Along with Other Pets
Rabbits are social and friendly animals. They like to spend time with other rabbits and they can even play well with cats, dogs, birds, and rodents. Cats and rabbits make an excellent match. However, you should be cautious because dogs and cats are predators. So be careful, especially when first introducing them.
14. Their Soft Fur
A rabbit’s fur is certainly attractive to us humans, and it makes them just so cuddly. The hair around a bunny’s ears and the tail is especially soft. Some breeds like the angora have silky soft wool and are extra fluffy.
The American Rabbit Breeders Association recognizes thousands of breeds. With many different types of furs. If you’re looking for an animal you can cuddle with and may even keep you warm in the process, a rabbit is a great choice.
15. They’re Quiet
Many people find bunnies attractive because of how quiet they are. They make little to no sound and are very relaxing to be around. Loud animals can definitely be a headache at times if you live close to your neighbors. Bunnies are an excellent choice because you don’t have to worry about noise if you’re a light sleeper, or if you have extra-thin walls in your house.
16. Their Big Round Eyes
Don’t you love your rabbit’s big, big eyes? And like humans, rabbits have different eye colors. Some have blue, grey, pink, brown, or red. However, the color can depend on the color of its coat. For example, white rabbits often have cute big red eyes.
In fact, their big eyes is one reason it’s believed that rabbits trigger that natural instinct humans have to protect their own young. Human babies have big eyes and so do rabbits, this could be one trait that we are genetically programmed to find to be adorable.
17. They’re Funny
It may sound strange, but rabbits are funny. Their curiosity is so amusing. The way they hop around the house and investigating things is often comical. They like to stick their nose into objects to get a good sniff of them, leaning their ears forward as they twitch their adorable nose.
In most cases, they’re checking to see if they’ve found something edible. With a bunny in the house, there always must be something going on, and this is what makes them so cute and funny at the same time.
18. They’re Easy To Train
Another trait that makes bunnies cute is that they’re easy to train. Many people don’t realize that bunnies can be trained to understand commands just like dogs and cats can. You can even train your rabbit using similar training techniques.
Rabbits can learn how to jump through hoops, run through mazes, retrieve items, or even relieve themselves only in their litter box. You just need to continue rewarding them once they begin to grasp the command to encourage it to become a long-term “learned” behavior.
19. Their Different Personalities
Similar to humans, rabbits have different personalities. Some are grumpy and dislike being touched. But others love being petted, are very social, and will run in circles when excited. Sometimes they’ll jump and twist in the air; this means they’re thrilled, and it’s so fun to watch.
As mentioned earlier, any traits we humans see as making the rabbit and “individual”, or unique, to other rabbits, is likely to be a trait that we find attractive. Their unique personalities are certainly one of these.
20. They Stand on Their Hind Legs
When rabbits are begging for treats, they often stand on their hind legs. This posture is also a sign that the bunny is curious. While in this position, they’ll sometimes swat anyone who approaches as if they’re boxing. It’s an irresistible and adorable behavior.
However, don’t fall for the cuteness and give your little buddy too many snacks because bunnies have sensitive stomachs. And if your rabbit seems to only be coming to you to beg for food, take a look at this article: Rabbit Only Comes for Food? Six Better Ways to Bond.
21. They Shake Their Ears Back and Forth
When holding your rabbit, he or she will often flick their ears back and forth as they try to get closer to you. Other times their ears will move independently, which is another trait that makes them cute to us.
However, other reasons a rabbit will shake its ears include:
- When they’re happy.
- If their ears are itchy.
- When they’re swatting your hand away.
22. How They Toss Toys
Bunnies love throwing toys around when they’re playing. They take a toy in their mouth and throw it to the side, then run to get it and do it all over again. The first time an owner sees this, it’s hard not to fall in love with it.
Besides playing, rabbits can do this when they’re bored or frustrated. For instance, if you place your rabbit in a confined space, they’ll often toss their feeding bowls to the side. But sometimes they do this just for fun even when they have plenty of room too. No matter what the reason, it’s quite endearing.
23. They Thump Their Rear Feet
A thump is the loudest sound you’ll hear from rabbits. It’s so cute when it happens, but they’re often trying to communicate. Rabbits do this as a sign of danger, as a warning to others, when they’re upset, when it’s too noisy, when they’re sick, or simply just when they’re excited and having fun.
As a rabbit owner, you’ll probably get to know what makes your rabbit thump their feet, and you’ll be tempted to try to get it out of your furry companion all the time.
24. They Can Be Mean and Sweet
When food is involved, bunnies can be mean to their partners. Sometimes you’ll see your rabbit grab food from another rabbit in their cage and runoff. Other times they might be trying hard to block another rabbit from reaching the food and doing this to them. They can look so cute when fighting for their favorite treat, as long as it’s not serious of course!
On the other hand, bunnies can be very sweet at times too. They’ll ignore you, run around their enclosure, and then come back for a massage or when they see a treat.
25. They Have Big Round Bellies
The bellies of rabbits are big and this certainly makes them cute. Their tummies stick out far from their bodies when they’ve had a good meal, when they’re twisting funny ways with their body, or when they’re lying down. A new rabbit owner will generally notice this most when the rabbit is resting and pressing on its stomach. They’re chubby and so adorable.
Bunnies are adorable, fluffy little creatures. In fact, we humans find them cute for a very biological and specific reason—because they appeal to our genetic programming to protect our own young. Their big eyes, flatter faces, and helpless appearance all appeal to our natural urges to protect that have been ingrained in us humans as a survival trait throughout our evolution. Pretty cool!
They’re just so cute and cuddly that they make you feel warm and fuzzy, and it’s why a lot of people are adding them to their families! Their intelligence, cleanliness, and cute colors make them among the cutest pets you could own.
Other Helpful Resources
- Male or Female Pet Rabbit? Why Your Choice Matters – If you’re picking out your first pet rabbit, make sure you put a lot of thought into if you should get a male or female. There are some very real differences in owning these two! This article will help you decide.
- The 6 Easiest Rabbit Breeds to Take Care Of – Picking the right breed is important, but why not pick a breed of rabbit that is very easy to care for and raise? Here’s a list of some of the easist rabbits to own.
- 3 Best Pet Rabbit Breeds That Chew Less – If you’re tired of rabbits that chew everything, and they do chew everything, then consider one of these breeds that are the least likely to chew up power cords, furniture, or your carpet.
- 7 Reasons Mini-Rex Rabbits Make Great Pets – The mini-rex rabbit is one of the most popular breeds of pet rabbits available, and this article will tell you why they’re such a great option for a pet.