Ever-clever creatures that they are, it’s not uncommon in the rabbit-raising community to hear stories of missing bunnies. Our perpetually curious herbivorous friends tend to wander off on their own in search of new foods to try and aren’t always able to find their way home.
If you’ve recently lost track of your rabbit’s whereabouts, you’re in luck: follow the advice in this article, and you’ll have a much better chance of tracking them down and organizing their safe and timely recovery.
The 10 Steps to Find a Lost Rabbit
1. Start in the Center
Make sure that you’ve fully examined your rabbit’s usual living quarters. Smaller bunnies are particularly adept at hiding in plain sight, and we’ve even seen our buns camouflage themselves with hay to avoid being seen. Leave the door to your rabbit’s enclosure open, and they may end up hopping right back in without your knowing it.
2. Check Underneath and Behind Furniture
Rabbits are masters of finding new and irritating places to wedge themselves into and love the challenge of finding a new spot to dig and burrow. Couches, wardrobes, and bathtubs are all favorite places to hide behind and underneath, so do a thorough sweep around the furniture in each room of your home.
3. Search Behind Appliances
Think your rabbit won’t jump or squeeze their way behind your washer and dryer? Think again. Exercise extreme caution while you’re moving these heavy appliances – nobody wants a squashed rabbit. Use your phone’s flashlight for low light conditions and searching for dark rabbits.
4. Don’t Forget to Look Up High
Your bunny’s legs aren’t just for lumping up and looking cute – they also allow for surprisingly high jumps. We’ve had acrobatic rabbits that got themselves into serious tummy trouble by jumping onto kitchen counters and searching for new snacks, so don’t forget to check everywhere they might be able to jump.
5. Double Check in the Kitchen
Pop quiz: why would your rabbit leave the cozy comfort of its home, bed, and water? The answer is almost always the same — food. Nine times out of ten, a missing rabbit has simply gone in search of extra snacks, so always do an extra thorough search in your kitchen.
6. Grab a Flashlight and Check Your Closets
When you’re getting ready in the morning, your rabbit could have easily slipped their way into your closet without you noticing. On more than one occasion where we thought our rabbit had disappeared, he was simply taking a nap with our shoes in the bedroom closet.
7. Open All Backpacks, Bags, and Purses
Tiny rabbits will find ample reason to dig and burrow into the contents of your school bag, backpack, purse, or especially grocery bags. Anywhere that you’ve recently kept food is a prime target for a “missing” rabbit to be searching through.
8. Lure Them Out with Treats
After making a thorough examination of the rooms of your home and not finding your rabbit, it’s time to lure them out with some of their favorite treats. A small piece of fruit left in multiple locations in your home can quickly alert you to where your bunny is hiding.
9. Lost Outside? Leave Your Rabbit’s Carrier Open and Place Food in It
Losing a rabbit outdoors is the most difficult situation of all. Start by immediately searching the surrounding area, trying to tempt your rabbit out with any treats that you might have on hand. Leave a reward in their carrier with the door open, and hopefully, your rabbit will find their own way back to safety.
10. Trouble Catching Your Rabbit? Use a Blanket or Jacket
Is your little rascal playing a good game of keep away? When time is of the essence, a well-thrown blanket, shirt, or soft jacket can buy you enough time to safely scoop your bunny up and return him to his (locked) enclosure.
In our experience, lost rabbits are more often just misplaced for a short time. While it’s certainly stressful to realize that you don’t know where your rabbit is, this is one of the awkward joys of being a rabbit owner: their highly inquisitive natures incline them towards exploration, even without your permission. Follow the steps listed above, and we hope that you’ll be able to find your little friend with no trouble at all.
- Related read: 9 Signs That Your Rabbit May Be Dying (Vet Answer)
Featured Image Credit: Pikrepo