Speaking Rabbit: How Do Rabbits Say Thank You?

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How do Rabbits say Thank You?

You’re excited about your new rabbit as your household pet, but you’re not yet sure how your rabbit feels about you. 

Are they comfortable with you? Are they upset or happy? Was that a “thank you” or a “please, get away from me.” 

Navigating your new pet’s personality isn’t always easy, especially if you’ve opted for a pet that isn’t as mainstream as your usual dog or cat. However, there are ways to tell what your rabbit is feeling. They’ll let you know in their unique way. 

Ready to learn how to speak rabbit so you can have the best relationship possible with your pet? We’re going to look at some things that rabbits do to show their love. 

How do rabbits say thank you? Let’s find out. 

Are rabbits loving pets?

There’s no clear-cut answer to this question. Of course, rabbits are capable of being loving and affectionate pets. However, they can also be a pet with a bad attitude and be difficult to train. 

The rabbit you get depends a bit on luck and a lot on the environment you create. 

Don’t panic if your rabbit is initially shy. Just like with cats or dogs, it may take a little while for them to get used to their new home and you. Give your rabbit a chance to adapt to its new home. 

Usually, rabbits will be timid and untrusting of humans initially. Rabbits that have been surrounded by humans for their whole lives are the exception to this. You could get an extremely friendly, cuddly, and affectionate rabbit as a pet. 

Rabbits’ wariness of humans is understandable seeing as they are a prey species. What does this mean? It means they have a lot of predators. They’re hunted by many animals, which, as a rabbit owner, is also an important thing to be aware of. Generally speaking, rabbits will be wary of larger, potentially dangerous creatures. 

Once you form a bond with your rabbit, they can be extremely affectionate pets. You just have to gain their trust first by taking care of your rabbit correctly. Make sure their environment is ideal so that they can thrive with you. 

And certainly, they will soon show you their gratitude with affection. 

Cuddling a Rabbit
Cuddling a Rabbit

How do rabbits say thank you?

If you’ve done your homework and have read up on how to best take care of your rabbit, then your rabbit will probably want to thank you for showing it so much love. 

How do rabbits say thank you?

A rabbit will say thank you in many ways. Understanding the ways that your rabbit shows you its love is important so that you know you’re doing a good job. And surely, you want to create a lasting bond with your pet. While a rabbit hasn’t quite earned the right to be called “man’s best friend,” they can be wonderful companions. 

Rabbits say thank you by showing their affection. They may lick you to show they appreciate something you’ve done. Generally, a rabbit will tell you “thank you” after you have petted them or done something to please them. 

Great, so a rabbit says thank you by giving you affection. But, you may be asking yourself: how exactly does a rabbit show a human their affection?

How do you tell if your rabbit loves you?

We now know that rabbits are capable of being loving and affectionate pets. We also know that a rabbit will say thank you by showing its owner some affection. 

But how exactly does a rabbit show affection? How will you know that your rabbit loves you?

Here are some signs that your rabbit is happy and showing you their appreciation with some love in their way. 

Girl cuddling a Rabbit
Girl cuddling a Rabbit

Laying close to you

You may have already assumed this was a good sign, but if your rabbit is lounging down next to you or near you, it’s a huge display of trust. 

As mentioned, rabbits are a prey species. If they are laying down, sprawled out, and totally relaxed, they become pretty easy prey. They aren’t able to get away as easily as they would if they were in their usual, upright position. 

What greater sign of affection than to show you they trust you by laying down and relaxing next to you? They feel safe, and lying next to you shows that. 

Purring when you pet them

Not only cats purr when they’re happy. Your rabbit may also purr to show you they’re pleased. 

How does a rabbit purr? A rabbit purrs by gently grinding its teeth. This action generates a soft clicking sound. Their heads will even shake slightly, just as a cat would when purring, hence the reference. 

So it’s not the same thing as a cat, but the idea is the same. They’re happy. 

If a rabbit purrs, then it also means that they are completely relaxed and content. They will generally purr when being petted or massaged. 

Circling your feet

A rabbit will start circling your feet when they are happy and excited. 

Generally, this will happen when they’re excited about food. However, your rabbit could also just be happy if they’re excited to see you. Think of a dog freaking out when its owner arrives home. It’s the same idea. 

Rabbits will run around your feet in circles, expressing their contentment at the possibility of food or your presence. They may also circle in between your feet, so be sure not to trip as your rabbit runs all around you. 

Doing binkies

You may have guessed just from the name “Binky” that this is a good thing. After all, how could such a cute word not provide an equally cute action?

A rabbit will binky to show their affection. 

What’s a binky, you eagerly ask. A binky is when a rabbit jumps into the air and twists its body. It’s funny and cute. It is a great sign if your rabbit is doing binkies when it sees you. 

Like circling your feet, rabbits are expressing excited happiness with their binkies. Your rabbit may also start racing around to let out its happy and excited energy as it throws in the occasional binky. 

Grooming you

Wait a minute. You’re the pet owner, right? Aren’t you the one who does the grooming?

Not in the case of rabbits. A rabbit will groom a human to show their love. What does that mean exactly?

If rabbits live in a group, they will groom each other. They’re looking out for their bunny tribe. They’ll lick each other to help each other out. 

If your rabbit starts licking you or even occasionally nipping you, this means you’re in. They see you as their family and are showing you they care. By taking your cleanliness into account, your rabbit shows that they care about your wellbeing. 


Flopping, like its cute cousin “binkying,” is a great sign. But, what is it?

A rabbit flops by going, quite abruptly, from a standing position to a lying one on its side. They quite literally flop down and stay there for a few seconds, maybe even minutes. 

This adorable act shows that a rabbit is happy, relaxed, and secure. If your rabbit is flopping, then this is a good sign for you as a pet owner that you’re doing something right. 

Nudging you

You know when you have such a good friend that you just nudge them and they know exactly what you’re saying? Well, this is kind of the idea with rabbits. 

A rabbit will nudge you when it wants your attention. Most likely, they want to be petted by you

This is a great sign that your rabbit loves you. They want to be close to you. They want your affection. By asking for your attention with a nudge, they’re showing you that they love and trust you. 

10 Signs Your Rabbit Really Loves You

Speaking rabbit

Learning the meanings behind the actions of your rabbit is important to understanding your pet. Your rabbit will let you know when they are pleased and when they are not. Be sure to get accustomed to their actions so that you know what’s going on. 

Rabbits can be wonderful pets. You want to know that your pet loves you. Rabbits will certainly show their contentment if you’re doing your job right. 

Make sure you understand the lingo: purr, binky, flop, nuzzle, groom. These are all actions that tell you your rabbit loves you and is thanking you for your companionship as well. 

Photo of author


Jennifer Bourassa is a passionate animal lover and the founder of The Rabbit Retreat, a website dedicated to educating rabbit owners and providing them with the necessary resources to care for their furry friends. With over a decade of experience in rabbit care, Jennifer is a knowledgeable and compassionate advocate for these beloved pets. Jennifer's love for rabbits started when she adopted her first bunny, Thumper, and quickly realized the joy and challenges that come with rabbit ownership. Since then, she has made it her mission to help other rabbit owners navigate the ins and outs of bunny care, from feeding and grooming to housing and more. With The Rabbit Retreat, Jennifer hopes to build a community of like-minded rabbit enthusiasts who can share their experiences and support one another in providing the best possible care for their furry companions.