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Do Rabbits Eat Insects?


Seeing your bunny munching on insects might get you curious if, by any chance, they devouring creepy-crawlies. Informed owners will get worried as it is a well-known fact that rabbits are strictly herbivorous. But do you need to worry if you find your bunny eating bugs? In most cases, NO!

As you may already know, bunnies are curious creatures that tend to get everything in their mouths they can grab. That may include bugs living in plants that rabbits eat as food. Usually, they feed on grass and veggies. Insects that live in these plants may also end up being in your bunny’s belly, but it won’t be an intentional intake. And don’t worry; these bugs do not generally do any harm to your pet.

Having that said, you do not want your rabbit to ingest a poisonous bug as that may lead you to carry your pet to a veterinarian. Poisonous bugs usually thrive in wild environments. For example, some insects crawl through the entire plant length to reach its leaves. These insects are not inhabitants of a particular type of plant and generally have strong defense mechanisms that can pass on diseases to other animals they get eaten by.

Do Rabbits Like The Taste Of Insects?

No, rabbits do not like the taste of bugs. Most rabbits eat bugs accidentally. Bunnies that eat insects intentionally are territorial. Almost all rabbits avoid eating insects like grasshoppers and spiders. They usually end up eating small insects crawling over plant leaves that bunnies generally eat as food.

Why Would A Rabbit Eat Bugs?

If you put a rabbit in a wild environment, you will notice that it looks for a variety of vegetation to feed on. It will roam around the entire grassland and eat a decent amount of grass and flowers to keep up with its dietary requirements.

While rabbits are herbivores, their inclination towards being carnivorous becomes imminent when they get to eat a lot of plants with insects creeping over their leaves. Besides this obvious reason, scientists aren’t sure why an herbivore like a rabbit would eat any kind of meat when it is not starving. It happens anyway, and experts have found possible reasons for that.

  • As mentioned above, bunnies remain curious about their diet. So it is no surprise that your pet may find it fun to catch and feed on a bug. This behavior would certainly help rabbits to avoid dying from starvation when habitats change.
  • A rabbit’s choice to eat bugs can be a rather defensive move. Some insects hop around to nag other animals. Those animals then have to eat such insects to avoid being irritated. Perhaps that is why experts recommend preventing the entry of crickets in the area where you keep rabbits.
  • Rabbits, which are hasty in nature, can eat bugs and worms present on the grass and leaves. Hence, it is highly likely that your bunny eats too many insects accidentally.
  • Territorial rabbits are usually intentional insect eaters. These bunnies develop a natural habit to bit on anything they consider a threat. This is how they thwart an insect attack on their territory.
  • Some bugs offer a better nutritional value than vegetables and other plants for rabbits. Caterpillars, worms, roaches, and some larva have a good amount of protein and other minerals. Hence, it is entirely possible for your bunny to snack on such insects to fill a nutrition gap. However, a domestic rabbit wouldn’t eat these insects because it is already provided with a rich diet.

Are Insects Safe To Eat?

Some rabbits develop a habit to hunt and munch on crickets. You will find them quite agile to jump and catch an insect in the air, which can be a treat to watch for rabbit keepers.

However, not all insects are safe to eat, especially in the wild. Many bugs are exposed to pesticides and insecticides. These bugs are particularly hazardous for your bunny. Some insects may also carry diseases or parasites, which can make a rabbit sick if ingested. Some insects may bite or sting to defend themselves.

Insects in the Bunny’s Hutch – Should You Worry?

A spider in the hutch should not be a cause of concern if your bunny pays no attention to it. These spiders are good at hunting pests and other insects that may harm your pet.

As for other insects, you will want to keep them away from your rabbit’s cage. It is best to look for any holes that may serve as bug nests. Also, look for any cracks and seams and seal them using tape or grout to keep the area free of any insects.

Rabbit eating carrot

Pay Attention to Your Bunny’s Diet?

A lot of fresh foods in the household can be a treat for your bunny. Examples include:

  • Bananas
  • Apples
  • Carrots
  • Bell peppers
  • Basil
  • Cherries
  • Cilantro
  • Grapes
  • Kale
  • Mint
  • Collard greens
  • Mustard greens
  • Papaya
  • Squash
  • Strawberries

Most items on this list are available in all parts of the world and are low-cost. So, if you want to make your bunny’s day, be sure to grab items from this list.

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