Recently I came across this interview with Denver veterinarian Terry Campbell. http://www.denverpost.com/headlines/ci_8414920
He talks about diagnosing and treating sick rabbits. Most of what he said seems like pretty sound advice.
But one thing that caught my attention was that he said petting and hugging are more human needs, and pets could do without them. I’d agree with the hugging part. I haven’t come across any animal that actually likes to be hugged. But as for petting, my Coco and Cosette love being petted. Cosette will sit for a long time being stroked as long as I don’t tickle her ears by accident. (And if that happens, then she’ll have to spend a long time scratching and grooming her ears before she settles in again for more petting.) Both rabbits also love being groomed by the other. So it seems to me that this is a rabbit need as well.
Does anyone have any other thoughts on the matter?
All of the bunnies at The House of Rabbits do like to sit on our lap and be petted, even play with their ears a bit. Most of them teeth purr quite a bit then. It takes some time to get them like this, best if started as little tykes! But I agree that they can get along without it, especially if they are bonded wth another.
That said, most do not like the picking up part, and will run to a covered place if they are in a large area. I think that is instinct.
Yes, I agree with the picking up part. Coco and Cosette don’t like being picked up. They definitely prefer just sitting next to me instead. Cosette has jumped onto my swiveling computer chair with me a bunch of times- which actually really surprised me. But the difference is that it’s on her own terms. She certainly has no fear of heights.