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Rabbits How do I pick up a bunny?


Well-known Member
Cavy Slave
Jun 7, 2010
So, as some of you know, we acquired a bunny 10 days ago. We have never picked her up. When she went to the vet he picked her up and she kicked wildly, trying to get away. He got her under control quickly and the vet tech put her in a trance so we could inspect her feet.

The vet showed me how to pick her up, one hand under the chest, one one her belly or under her butt, but not under her feet (nothing to launch herself off of), to keep her spine pressed up against my chest so she can't hurt herself. He told me to pick her up briefly every day, so we both could get comfortable with it.

Problem is, I can't figure it out. I get one hand under her and then she LEAPS. I keep reading about their backs being so fragile and I see all these pictures of bunnies with broken backs. I get on my knees and lean over so I don't have to pick her up very far.

I just need to pick her up for nail trims, for now I'll have the vet tech do it, but I do need to figure it out. We don't intend to hold her or carry her around.
Pet Rabbit Care : Picking Up Your Pet Rabbit - YouTube

You can also tuck the rabbit's head under your armpit bringing your arm around to hold the bunny like a football. Since the rabbit has it's head covered it feels safer. If she starts to struggle drop down on one knee and wrap your other arm around her huddling her to your chest or let her go. While you are training her wear thick long sleeves I have had some nasty, nasty cuts by those big back legs.

Bobtails Rescue: How to pick up a rabbit - YouTube
I too, have been wondering this. We are relatively new to rabbits, and having trouble with the nail trims (thats why we needed to pick them up) so we took them to the vets a few days ago. The vet tech was also very knowledgable, and showed us a few ways. A way that seemed to work with Soren, (the very skittish one) was to cover his eyes gently and pull out one foot at a time. I am not an expert, but this worked very well for him. The football hold, as shown above worked well for our female.
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