Do Bunnies Eat Insects? 5 things you need to know.

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do bunnies eat insects
do bunnies eat insects

Last Updated on August 2, 2021 by Rei

So, you just saw your bunny, its back turned away from you minding their own business, then you got curious and wonder what’s he up to now.

You go close and see your bunny eating an insect! As rabbit owners, our first instinct is to be worried. But not to worry because here’s the answer:

Bunnies being curious creatures would often munch on anything they can get their hands on. And that usually includes bugs that eat the same food as bunnies or bugs that live in plants.

While bunnies would not intentionally eat an insect because they are herbivores who primarily eat grass and veggies, some small insects can get into the plants the bunny is currently eating.

A bunny eating a small amount of bug is not a problem unless the bug is poisonous, in which case, you need to bring your bunnies to a veterinarian.

Do bunnies willingly eat insects?

Do bunnies willingly eat insects?

No, bunnies would not willingly eat an insect on their own. Bunnies are herbivores and have a diet of fibrous plants and veggies.

But in the wild, where both rabbits and insects live together a bunny might accidentally eat a bug that’s crawling on a leaf that the bunny is eating.

Be careful though, because some insects have defense mechanisms and some carry diseases that could be passed into your bunnies.

Do bunnies like the taste of insects?

No, bunnies don’t like the taste of insects and would only eat them either accidentally or when your bunnies are territorial.

Bunnies generally avoid eating insects like grasshoppers, spiders, and other insects but could accidentally eat small insects by accident.

Instances where a bunny might eat an insect.

Instances where a bunny might eat an insect

Accidentally

Your rabbit might accidentally eat an insect if those insects are in their food. A lot of commercially available hay on the market today would often contain some amounts of small insects.

Your bunnies might even get mites and mange from hay and pellets. That’s why you should only buy your rabbit food from reputable brands to avoid having these problems.

Territorial

Territorial bunnies would attack anything that they deemed to be in their territory. That includes insects and other small animals.

This territorial behavior is often seen in rabbits that are unneutered. Unneutered bunnies are often aggressive and territorial due to hormones.

For insects, because they are small, your bunnies would try to attack them by eating or biting them. While eating small harmless insects is fine, there are a lot of insects out there that have defense mechanisms and insects that are poisonous.

So make sure that your rabbit is neutered to avoid getting that unwanted hormonal aggression.

Risk of bunnies eating insects

Risk of bunnies eating insects

Poisonous insects

While small insects are not a danger to your bunnies, there are a lot of poisonous insects out there like spiders, centipedes, and scorpions.

Be careful not to let your bunnies wonder where a poisonous insect might be hiding.

Diarrhea

Another possible danger of ingesting insects to bunnies is diarrhea. Bunnies being herbivores, cannot digest insects.

Parasites

Parasites could also be passed by an insect to your rabbits. Pest insects often contain parasites that can be passed by either biting into another animal or by being ingested.

What can you do to stop your bunnies from eating insects?

What can you do to stop your bunnies from eating insects?

First, you should not let your bunnies wander to places where insects like to hide. Make sure you cover any holes or hiding spots that your rabbit can crawl into like under the bed where insects often hide.

Second is to buy quality food from trusted brands. Low-quality brands of rabbit foods often contain insects and other dirt that can be dangerous to rabbits.

Some even reported that their rabbit is getting mites and mange because of their food.

And lastly, clean your place and bunny-proof it as much as possible because your rabbit will eat everything on its way!

Summary

While bunnies wouldn’t eat insects intentionally, insects can still get eaten if the insect crawling on the bunny’s food.

Ingesting small amounts of insects is not a danger to bunnies as long as the insect is not poisonous.

Although ingesting insects is not a danger to bunnies, it’s still better for them to not eat any because rabbits are herbivores and might not be able to digest the insect.

Some insects might even carry parasites with them and pass them into your rabbit. Also, insects could have been sprayed by pesticides and get eaten by your rabbit.

That’s why you should never encourage your bunnies to eat any insects.

To prevent your bunnies from eating insects, make sure that any hiding spots where an insect might be hiding should be off-limits to your bunnies.

Finally, be careful on buying hay and other rabbit food from untrusted brands because they could contain insects and insects sprayed with pesticides that can be dangerous to bunnies.

Cite this article:

Bunny Horde (November 14, 2021) Do Bunnies Eat Insects? 5 things you need to know.. Retrieved from https://bunnyhorde.com/do-bunnies-eat-insects/.
"Do Bunnies Eat Insects? 5 things you need to know.." Bunny Horde - November 14, 2021, https://bunnyhorde.com/do-bunnies-eat-insects/

Sources

  • Blas, Carlos de., and Julian Wiseman. The Nutrition of the Rabbit. CAB International, 1998.
  • Varga, Molly, and Frances Harcourt-Brown. Textbook of Rabbit Medicine: Revised and Edited. Elsevier, 2014.
  • Basic Rabbit Care
  • Diarrhea