How Smart Are Pet Rabbits?

If you’ve ever owned a cat or dog, you know that this common pet is very intelligent and requires mental stimulation. But what about small animals like rabbits? Rabbits may not have a reputation for being intelligent, but the truth is, pet rabbits are very smart. They are able to learn tricks, solve puzzles, and they can even learn a few words, making them great friends.

In this article, we’ll cover which breeds of rabbits are the smartest, as well as some of the best ways to keep your rabbit mentally stimulated.


Which Rabbit Race is the Smartest?

Like dogs and cats, there are many different breeds of rabbits. It is difficult to make generalizations about which breed of rabbit is the most intelligent because, in the end, individual rabbit intelligence will vary regardless of breed. However, certain rabbit breeds are more popular than others, and that popularity tends to point to the intelligence and sociability of the breed. Some of the most popular breeds include the Lionhead, Belgian Hare, Holland Lop, Netherland Dwarf, Mini Rex, and Dutch rabbit.

dutch dwarf bunny

What Can I Teach My Rabbit?

If rabbits are very smart, you may wonder what they can learn. Like dogs, your rabbit is able to learn commands like “stay” or “come on.” However, like cats, rabbits are independent animals that may not always obey your commands. You will need to provide plenty of treats to allow your rabbit to learn your commands. You should also know that it is best to wait to train your rabbit until it is at least 6 months old; You won’t get very far with training baby rabbits.

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One of the most practical habits you can teach your rabbit is poop training. Although they are very clean animals, pet rabbits do not instinctively throw their waste in the trash. However, they tend to defecate in one particular area away from their food. If you plan to let your rabbit roam around the house, you can train it using a sand tray. Try placing the litter tray in a designated area of ​​your rabbit’s cage to hook the tray into using the bathroom. If you remove the tray after some time, your rabbit will likely look for it when it needs to be removed.

With patience, rabbits are able to learn more than simple commands and litter training. You may be surprised to learn that rabbits can play catch and jump and hoops. However, you need to make sure that your rabbit is getting something from it, like a treat. Rabbits are unlikely to do the trick purely because you ask.

rabbit sitting on a stretcher

Toys For Pet Rabbits

There are many toys you can choose from to mentally stimulate your rabbit. However, make sure you don’t buy anything that has been treated with chemicals, as these toys can potentially harm your rabbit. Rabbits love to chew, so many rabbit toys are meant for chewing. Be sure to mix chew toys with puzzles and other options that will help stimulate your rabbit mentally.

Some great toy options for your rabbit that you can buy at pet stores include sticks designed to chew, balls to chew and chase, and treat balls that have openings for treats and encourage activity. If you don’t want to buy a new toy, there are many common household items that you can use as toys for your pet rabbit. Some great DIY options include cardboard boxes with holes cut out, PVC pipes you can turn into tunnels, and old baby toys.

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Final Thoughts

Don’t underestimate your rabbit’s intelligence. Training your pet rabbit may not be as easy as training a dog to do tricks, but with patience, your rabbit can learn a thing or two. Be sure to give your rabbit plenty of playtime outside of his cage, as he will easily get bored if he spends too much time alone. With diligent practice, you might even be able to train your rabbit to use a litter box or tray!

Featured Image Credit: pritsana, Shutterstock