How Rabbits Stomp, Grind Their Teeth To Communicate

rabbit communication

Rabbits have been known for serving as friendly companions with low attention needs. This is why you may have one as a pet to help you feel less lonely. A vital feature of this animal is that it does not make loud noises like cats and dogs.

However, rabbits still communicate with you through other means. Typically, they display emotions by using different ear positions. For instance, if a rabbit has one ear down while the other is up, it means that the animal is attracted to a sound.

Besides that, many other ear positions can help you know whether your pet is relaxed, agitated, or happy. Apart from ears, rabbits also use their teeth to show some feelings. If you want to know more about how rabbits stomp grind their teeth to communicate, you’re in the right place.

Here is all the information you need about rabbits and their teeth grinding habits.

How Rabbits Stomp, Grind Their Teeth To Communicate?

rabbit communication

The top thing to remember is that rabbits stomp their teeth in two ways. One of the grinding methods is alarming, and you must take your pet to the vet in such a case.

Meanwhile, the other way is of no concern because it shows that your rabbit is happy. Here are more details about the two teeth grinding methods:

Quiet Grinding

This is the most prevalent teeth grinding type in rabbits and does not cause any concern. Typically, you may not notice your pet stomping their teeth from a distance in this category. Not only that, but you will also not be able to hear the chattering if your rabbit is far.

The key feature of quiet grinding is that it shows your pet is in a relaxed and happy state. Many reasons can contribute to this, such as a healthy diet, a safe environment, and much more. However, keep in mind that it may be difficult to get your pet to indulge in quiet grinding.

Typically, it is more difficult for an owner to win a rabbit’s love and keep it happy. However, your pet will show this to you in different relaxed positions once you do. You can get close to the animal to hear the quiet grinding sound.

Besides that, rabbits also grind their teeth when wearing them down to prevent overgrowth. You should remember that this animal’s teeth constantly grow during its lifecycle. This is why rabbits need to wear down their teeth to avoid issues such as malocclusion.

Loud Grinding

rabbit communication

Loud grinding may not be widespread, but it is still common in many rabbits. The key feature of this stomping is that you must be concerned when it happens. This is because a rabbit only indulges in loud teeth grinding when in pain or discomfort.

You should also note that this pain may be physical because of health problems. Besides that, it can also be mental due to environmental change and other reasons. Rabbits also grind their teeth loudly when predators injure them but are still fighting.

Typically, rabbits engage in teeth stomping because they do not prefer to show pain by making sounds or through facial expressions. Another thing to note is that you will be able to hear the grinding from a distance in this case. So you will not have to get close to your pet.

How To Identify When A Rabbit Is Safely Grinding Its Teeth?

rabbit communication

Here are the key things that will help you identify the teeth grinding type your pet is performing:

Sound Distance

The top way to identify whether your pet is safely grinding its teeth is by checking the sound distance. If the rabbit is far from you and you can hear the noise, it means that the animal is performing loud grinding. You should immediately take your rabbit to the vet in this case.

Sound Type

rabbit communication

Another thing that can help identify the type is by checking the sound. Typically, quiet stomping resembles the noise of a cat purring. So you should go close to your rabbit and hear the sound.

If you also find it as purring, you can go back to your daily tasks instead of being concerned. Meanwhile, you must be concerned if the stomping sounds aggressive. For example, a rabbit produces disturbing grinding noise when in pain. This is because of the teeth meeting each other.

Rhythm Frequency

rabbit communication

The sound rhythm frequency can quickly help you identify whether your rabbit is purring or doing loud grinding. This is because the key feature of quiet stomping is that the rabbit does it continuously. Moreover, the sound occurs in a rhythmic pattern to show happy emotions.

However, the situation reverses during the loud stomping category. You will not be able to identify a regular rhythm in this case. Besides that, the sound may not be continuous because the pet may only feel pain at specific times.

Eye Appearance

rabbit communication

As we said earlier, rabbits don’t use noises like other animals for communicating. Instead, they use ear positions and body parts such as teeth for displaying their mental and physical state. Another thing that your pet may use to show emotions is the eyes.

When a rabbit is relaxed and indulging in safe grinding, you will find its eyes to be calm. They will also appear sleepy because of their happy state. So the eye appearance can help you decide the grinding type.

Besides that, the eyes will appear fearful if your rabbit is in pain and performing loud grinding. Not only that, but the animal’s eyes will also be wide open to show alertness. If you notice this sign, be sure to take the pet’s picture and send it to your veterinarian for guidance.

Reaction To Touch

Rabbits are friendly pets and do not often bite when you touch them. This is why is their reaction to touch can help you in many cases. If your pet is safely grinding its teeth, you can put your hand on its body to check the reaction. Typically, the relaxed rabbit will not be disturbed and will continue being lethargic.

Meanwhile, if you touch your pet in pain, the animal will move away from you. The rabbit can also become agitated instantly when you put your hand on its body. It may even bite you if your touch increases the pain. This is why be mindful when using this sign for differentiation.

When Does A Rabbit Performs Loud Teeth Stomping?

rabbit communication

Your pet will perform loud stomping when it is in pain or stressed. However, many causes can contribute to this factor. Here are the top things that can cause your pet to grind its teeth loudly:


The top time your rabbit may grind its teeth loudly is when it is suffering from an injury. An internal or external wound may be causing your pet to be in pain. This is why it may be grinding its teeth to distract itself and not show weakness.

Typically, you should take your pet to a veterinarian when it has been in an accident or fight. The physician will perform a complete checkup to ensure that no wound goes unnoticed. Besides that, you should also take your rabbit to the vet when it is grinding teeth loudly.

Poor Diet

One of the leading causes of loud grinding is poor diet. A rabbit may not need much attention, but it requires high-quality hay daily. The ingredient provides your pet with the roughage it needs to carry out daily tasks.

When your pet does not get the daily nutrients in the correct quantity, its body processes will be affected. For instance, lack of fibers can lead to severe digestive disorders. Moreover, your rabbit will not be able to wear down its teeth to prevent overgrowth.

Typically, constant teeth growth can lead to malocclusion, which is the misalignment of the teeth. In this case, top incisors will grow inwards while the bottom two will grow outwards. You should remember that the upper teeth can pierce through the skin tissue in your pet’s mouth and cause it pain.

A Threat

Rabbits have sharp senses that allow them to detect a predator from a distance. This can cause your pet to become stressed because it may not be able to defend itself. Because of this, you may see your rabbit grinding its teeth loudly out of fear.

Besides that, your pet can also misidentify a change in the environment as a threat. For instance, the noise of your loud lawnmower may cause the rabbit to consider the sound a danger. Again, the animal will indulge in stressful teeth stomping because of the misconception.


A key feature of rabbits is that they are sensitive animals who require some companionship. You can provide them a safe space and love as a human, but your pet may still be lonely. This is because rabbits are most comfortable with other members of their breed.

So the top tip that can help you prevent teeth stomping because of loneliness is getting rabbits in pairs. This will prevent your pet from feeling the absence of its breed members. Moreover, it can encourage the animals to indulge in quiet or safe grinding.

Excessive Petting

Rabbits do not require much human attention because they are not keen lovers of handling. Instead, they like their space more when you respect their boundaries. This is one of the reasons why rabbits move away from kid owners because they pet them excessively.

Besides that, excessive petting can also cause your pet to feel threatened, especially when a stranger is touching them. So the animal may grind its teeth in stress and also warn you. Typically, eliminating the stranger from your pet’s surroundings will help you keep them comfortable.

How To Encourage A Rabbit To Perform Quiet Grinding?

rabbit communication

Here are the top things that can help you keep your rabbit relaxed so that it mainly engages in safe teeth grinding:

Provide A Safe Space

Rabbits dig holes in the ground when in the wild so that they can escape to a safe space if a predator is nearby. Besides that, the location can also provide them privacy during different days. This is why you should replicate this when keeping a rabbit indoors.

By offering a safe space that your rabbit can escape to, you can help your pet be relaxed in stressful conditions. Typically, animals who don’t have a safe room tend to sneak under the bed or sofa for sleeping. So you must offer your rabbit a private space, no matter how small it is.

Healthy Diet

High-quality food matters a lot when ensuring the prime health of your rabbit. You must include the right amount of fibers in your pet’s diet for a healthy digestive system. Besides that, you must also ensure that the quantities of other nutrients will meet the daily needs of your furry companion.

A healthy diet will keep your pet at low risk for developing health disorders. It will promote teeth wearing so that your rabbit does not suffer from malocclusion or other dental diseases. This means that the chances of your pet being in pain will reduce greatly.


Companionship is one of the top things that will help you erase your rabbit’s loneliness. Typically, you can get another rabbit of the same breed to offer your pet 24/7 companionship. If you cannot afford that, you can set up playdates with other rabbit owners.

If your friend also has a rabbit, you can visit their place from time to time so that your pet can enjoy it there. Besides that, you can also offer your companionship to the rabbit by gaining its trust. A key thing that can help you do this is giving your pet head strokes in a moderate amount.

Final Words

rabbit communication

This is everything you need to know about how rabbits stomp grind their teeth to communicate. The key takeaway is that your pet will perform quiet grinding when happy and relaxed. Meanwhile, loud teeth stomping is a sign of pain, stress, and fear.

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