Although keeping rabbits as pets has been popular for decades, over the last three to five years, there has been a huge spike in the number of people looking to keep pet rabbits with many of them reaching out for guidance on how they should be taking care of their new pet.
One of the more commonly asked questions that we have seen people asking about time and time again is why do female rabbits hump each other?
With so many people reaching out about female rabbits humping each month, we have decided to publish this article going over the topic.
Our hope is to try and help as many of our readers who are keeping pet rabbits as possible better understand female rabbit mounting behaviour.
We usually see a few related questions to humping female rabbits each month and wanted to cover them all in this article.
We have added our table of contents below to make it easier or our readers to skim the article and quickly get to specific sections of the article that they are wanting to read.
Do Female Rabbits Hump Each Other?
Female rabbits will hump each other as a way to compete to be the dominant female of the herd. Although rare, this behavior can result in aggression between two female rabbits if one will not submit to the other.
Although humping is the most obvious sign of a female rabbit trying to show her dominance, they may also chase other rabbits and nip them either their teeth.
If you do keep a number of female rabbits you should try to watch out for this type of behavior to try and observe it is becoming increasingly serious.
The majority of humping amongst female rabbits will be reduced once a single female has managed to establish herself as the dominant female of the herd.
If the dominant female rabbit does think that other rabbits are standing up to her then the behavior can become progressively worse resulting in fights between two female rabbits potentially ending with injury.
What Causes Female Rabbit Mounting Behavior?
Female rabbit mounting behavior is primarily due to the instinct to try and become the dominant female rabbit of the herd. This is not usually done for breeding rights as the male rabbits will breed with all females but female rabbit mounting is often done for feeding rights.
This is why the humping between your female rabbits may stop for many months only to start up again due to an error the owner of the rabbits make.
Just like with dominant dogs, the dominant rabbits should technically be fed first and this includes the order that treat food and attention should be awarded too.
Rabbits are not as aggressive as dogs though so it is common for the female rabbit to not pay much attention to the feeding order as long as she gets fed quickly.
New females being added to your herd or rabbits can also result in the humping starting up again as the current dominant female rabbit feels the need to assert her dominance over the new female.
Do Female Rabbits Hump Male Rabbits?
Some ultra dominant female rabbits will try to hump smaller male rabbits who are usually juveniles as a way to display dominance.
This usually stops once the male rabbit becomes an adult though as the male rabbit will often display aggression towards the female rabbit that tries to assert dominance over him.
Some female rabbits will may try to gang up on a juvenile male rabbit and hump him constantly.
If you observe this behavior in your own rabbits then separating the young male from the group of females is highly recommended until the male has grown to his full adult size.
The ganging up behavior is essentially bullying within the rabbit community and it can end up causing problems with the male rabbits behavior.
If the male rabbit is not separated from the female rabbits who are pestering him constantly then once he grows he may end up display aggression to the females constantly even if they submit due to their previous behavior of constant harassment being cemented in his brain.
How To Stop Female Rabbit Mounting!
The easiest way to stop female rabbit mounting is to physically stop the behavior, site the female rabbits side by side to each other, and speak to them in a soft, calm voice while storing them gently.
This simple, quick, and easy trick is often able to discourage the behavior on female rabbits as their urge to become dominant is considerably lower than in male rabbits.
The lack of desire to become the dominant female rabbit can actually work to your advantage as many female rabbits will simply submit to the rabbit that is trying to become the dominant rabbit as soon as she starts to hump them.
This can allow a female rabbit with a strong dominance drive to quickly establish herself as the dominant female and reduce the frequency that she will feel the need to display the behavior.
Unfortunately, in some very rare situations, two female rabbits who both have a strong urge to become dominant may end up together.
This is where problems can occur as neither female rabbit will submit to the other and the humping will usually escalate to violence.
The only way to stop this behavior is to keep the female rabbits separate meaning they have different hutches and are let out of their hutch as different times to play.
That brings our article going over if female rabbits hump each other to an end. We hope that we have been able to help as many of our readers as possible and that we have been able to explain why female rabbits hump as well as how you are able to stop the behaviour. Thankfully, due to the weak dominance drive in female rabbits, it is very rare that this will end up being a serious problem.