Every Reason Why Rabbits lick.

Categorized as Bunny Facts Tagged

Last Updated on February 21, 2023 by Marjon Ramos

Rabbits are social animals, and they use licking and grooming as a sign of affection for one another. If your pet rabbit is licking you, it’s a sign that they love you and trust you.

Rabbits would only lick those they considered family. They might also be signaling you to pet them. Paired rabbits will often take turns grooming each other, so your rabbit might be expecting you to return the favor by petting them.

Now that I’ve given you the gist of the article, read on as I explain in more detail why rabbits lick:

Why do rabbits lick?

Baby wild rabbit with its tongue out.

The main reason rabbits lick is to groom and bond with their family. Rabbits do this as a sign of affection for one another.

You will often notice this behavior in paired-bonded rabbits. One or both rabbits would take turns licking and grooming each other.

If your rabbit is licking you, it means that he loves and trusts you. But, it could also mean that they want you to pet them.

As I said earlier, two bonded rabbits would take turns grooming each other. If your rabbit is licking you a lot, it’s a sign that you need to do the same by petting them.

What does it mean when your rabbit licks you a lot?

When your rabbits lick you a lot, it means that your rabbit sees you as part of its tribe or family. Bonded paired rabbits would often groom each other by licking, which is a sign of affection.

Your rabbit might also be signaling you to pet them. Oftentimes, rabbits would lick their owners so that you would return the favor by petting them back.

Try and see if your rabbit is licking you after being petted.

Why is your rabbit licking you all of a sudden?

Rabbit with its tongue out.

If your rabbit suddenly starts licking you, it could mean that they’re starting to trust you. Rabbits would only lick those they considered family.

Rabbits use grooming and licking to bond with one another, so if your rabbit does the same to you, they’re starting to consider you part of their family.

Why do rabbits lick things?

Rabbit licking with its tongue out

Depending on your rabbit’s personality, they might start to lick things like leathers and fabrics. Some rabbits will lick things because they like the texture of them and it reminds them of fur.

Your rabbit could also lick things if they like the smell. For example, certain fruity fabric softeners you use on your pillows could cause your rabbit to be confused and try to taste and lick them.

It’s not usually a concern when a rabbit licks things. Just make sure that they’re not licking any dangerous chemicals that have been poured into what they’re licking.

Why do rabbits lick themselves?

Rabbits lick themselves as a part of their grooming ritual. They do this to clean themselves. Rabbits are meticulous groomers. They will spend hours each day grooming themselves.

That’s why it’s not necessary to bathe a rabbit because they’re already doing an excellent job of it.


Rabbits lick each other as a sign of affection. When your pet rabbits lick you, it means that they love you and consider you part of their family/tribe.

Your rabbit could also be expecting you to pet them. If your rabbit starts licking you after you pet them, they might be returning the favor and asking for more.

When a rabbit licks things like fabrics, it might be due to the smell. Certain fruity smells you use on your fabrics might be confusing your rabbit, and they want to test/taste them.

Cite this article:

Bunny Horde (June 15, 2024) Every Reason Why Rabbits lick.. Retrieved from https://bunnyhorde.com/rabbit-licking/.
"Every Reason Why Rabbits lick.." Bunny Horde - June 15, 2024, https://bunnyhorde.com/rabbit-licking/

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By Marjon Ramos

I’ve loved and cared for rabbits since I was 9 years old, and I’m here to share my passion for rabbits. My objective is to help rabbit owners give their rabbits the best life possible.