Thursday, October 30, 2008

How to Pick Up a Rabbit

Rabbits deserve a high level of respect and this includes the right not to be restrained by humans for our pleasure, for instance, by unnecessarily picking them up. (Look back here to read why rabbits don't like being held despite their stuffed-animal appearance.) However, there are instances, like a vet visit or a nail trim, that require a rabbit to be picked up.

Knowing the proper way to pick up and hold your rabbit is essential to avoiding serious injury. When picking up a rabbit, you'll need to be confident and slightly forceful. Meek attempts allow the rabbit to flail and kick out its hind legs, which could cause a disastrous spinal fracture. Therefore you must always support the bottom of a rabbit while they are being picked up and held.



The best way to pick up a rabbit starts with a few nice pats on the head for reassurance.














Then, move your hands down to its shoulders and wrap your hands around its back and sides, pushing down softly but firmly.














Move your right hand under the chest and lift up slightly.












Place your left hand on the bottom of the rabbit near its tail and lift her up, holding her firmly and tightly.












Place the rabbit to your chest, supporting her legs. Hold her firmly and securely, disabling her ability to jump. A fall from a few feet can lead to a leg or back fracture.
If your rabbit has a tendency to flail when held, wrap her in a towel to restrain her completely. This sort of wrapping technique can be helpful for nail trims as well.


















She gets a treat for being such a good sport!

12 comments:

Yvette said...

Thanks for this informative post. When I was temporarily holding a rabbit at my place I was too scared to pick it up because I didn't know how!!! Now I know.

shortcake said...

What an informative post! Excellent pictures! :D

Anonymous said...

thanks alot for your help and pictures, fingers crossed we may have more luck in picking up our rabbits, once we have stopped them runnung ff of course!!!

Viagra Online said...

I have a farm and I have some rabbits they jump everywhere and I think they really enjoy my farm, they have plenty of room to jump and be happy, nice pictures, what a cute rabbit!

marven said...

I was too scared to pick it up because I didn't know how!!! Now I know. banner design . I have 3 rabbits and their kids.

John said...

This article is very nice & i like it this is paragraph is so nice & its very informative


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I cant believe that this stuff continues to happen when there are clear signs of abuse and/or neglect.

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andrew said...

Wow! great article, incredibly helpful. I am starting a new business soon and I will be following some of this advice to a tee. Thank! wireless internet.

Anonymous said...

Hi I have just got 2 baby female rabbits (12 weeks old) im trying to pick them up but whenever i scoop my hand under their chest they just run off! i havent kept on trying because i dont want them to feel chased and get scared. the only way i have been able to pick them up so far is by putting my hand on their back (very gently) and scooping their bottom up first (then sliding my hand round to underneath their chest) is this ok or will i harm them? i dont push down or anything and if when i put my hand on their back they run off i just leave them. they just will not let me put my hand underneath them first!

The Rabbit Advocate said...

Try picking up the buns with both of your hands on either side of the rabbit, slowly moving one hand so that it supports the rabbit's bottom. Putting a hand under a rabbit will cause them to run away! Rabbits are also a bit easier to handle if you have a hand on their head, covering their eyes-- this has a calming influence.
On a sidenote, I recommend having a veterinarian confirm the two females' genders. Incorrectly sexing rabbits has led to many, many surprise litters! Good luck!