Pet rabbits and wild rabbits differ in many ways. However, one way in which they have remained largely the same can be seen in their sleeping patterns. The short answer to the question Do rabbits sleep? Is of course “yes” – all mammals need sleep to allow their body’s to recover after a hard day of trying to survive! The long answer, however, is a little more involved. Let’s delve a little deeper.
Are rabbits nocturnal?
In the wild, rabbits are in constant danger of being hunted by predators such as foxes, badges, birds of prey and even our beloved pet cats and dogs. Although our pet rabbits are kept safe and warm under our care, the instinct to avoid the danger of predators is hard coded into their DNA. Due to this, both wild and pet rabbits prefer to sleep during the day (animals who sleep during the day are referred to as “nocturnal”). However, despite the fact that rabbits are nocturnal – it’s not unusually to see them out during daylight if they think that there is food around!
How do rabbits sleep?
Like most of us, rabbits have a selection of sleeping positions that the find most comfortable. A lot of pet rabbits sleep laid on their sides, with their legs stretched out at either end. However, some rabbits also like to sleep sat upright like a Sphinx, with it’s little bunny ears folded flat. Again, like all of us, it’s best not to wake a sleeping bunny – rabbits can often become irritable and grumpy when their natural sleeping pattern is disrupted.
Where do rabbits sleep?
Wild rabbits live in burrows and warrens, usually set near overgrown foliage and bushes (find out more about where rabbits live in our article “Where Do Rabbits Live?”). Pet rabbits like to try and replicate this to feel safe whilst sleeping, so it’s important to provide your bunny with everything they need to achieve this. Your rabbit’s hutch should have a closed-off area filled with straw or hay for your bunny to burrow into, and also eat. You can buy our favourite Rabbit bedding here, and find out about the best rabbit hutches currently available on the marker are in our “Top 5 Rabbit Hutches” article.
Do Rabbits sleep – Summary
Rabbits love to sleep, just like all other mammals. Whilst they’re not nocturnal, they do love to be awake at dawn and dusk.
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