When I was younger, my dog loved playing fetch and tug-of-war.
When Rufus was a puppy, chew toys and squeaky toys were favorites too. So when I got my first pet rabbit, I wondered if rabbits also need toys.
What would be the best kinds of toys for rabbits, and how would the toys benefit them?
Rabbits need plenty of mental and physical stimulation to lead a healthy and enriched life.
The best rabbit toys to keep your rabbit engaged are chew toys, digging toys, foraging toys, activity tables or play centers, puzzles, throwing or tossing toys, hideaways, mazes, obstacle or agility courses, and cat castles or trees.
10 Best Rabbit Toys Would Love to Play With
There are many types of rabbit toys that are ideal for your bunny.
You can choose whether you want to buy your rabbit’s toys, make them yourself (or enlist the help of your sister, close friend, or kids), or have a combination of bought and DIY-ed toys.
Rabbits need to constantly chew to wear down their teeth so overgrown teeth don’t cause serious health issues.
One way to help your rabbit wear down their teeth naturally is by providing chew toys for them. (The other is an unlimited supply of hay.)
There are various types of chew toys you can get for your Ms. Fluffy Ears, from chew balls to gnawing branches.
Ensure that chew toys are rabbit-safe.
Gnawing branches can be made from applewood, aspen, birch, maple, or willow.
Give your rabbit a branch to chew on and then give them a new one when it has been completely chewed through.
Chew balls that are made from seagrass, water hyacinth, and/or rattan, or even cardboard are ideal for rabbits.
Your bunny can chew these balls and also roll them for entertainment value. So they are like a 2-in-1 deal.
You can teach your bun to fetch the ball too if you roll or lightly throw it a distance away.
If you have a loose weave ball, stuff it with hay or rabbit-friendly grass so your bunny can nibble away.
Examples of chew toys are:
- Naturals by Rosewood Trio of Fun Balls
- Oxbow Apple Sticks Bundle
- Kaytee Perfect Chews Rabbit Toy
- Oxbow Enriched Life Timothy Carrot Lollipop
Alternatively, you can also make a range of chew toys for your rabbit.
For example, take a toilet paper roll and make a few holes in the roll.
Then add some willow sticks or apple twigs from an untreated apple tree in the holes.
Digging toys for your rabbit can be a digging tray or a digging box. Rabbits are natural diggers and this helps keep their nails short.
Plus, rabbits like to forage for food, so you can combine these two rabbit needs into one activity to keep your rabbit happy.
Once you have the digging box or tray ready, you can hide a few treats inside for your rabbit to find.
Your bun will simply hop into the tray or box, and dig and/or then look for the treat.
You can buy digging toys for your bunny, like the Frisco Step-in Cat Scratcher Toy.
Or you can easily make inexpensive digging boxes. Use a cardboard box, garden planter, plastic box, wicker basket, or large tray.
Fill it with soil, child-friendly sand, toilet paper rolls, shredded paper or newspaper, hay, or straw.
The foraging toy for a rabbit works well with a digging tray, but both activities can also be separated to keep your rabbit guessing and amused.
In the wild, rabbits forage for their food, and pet rabbits love foraging too.
You can get a forage mat like the Oxbow Timothy Club Hide and Seek Mat. The mat is edible, and you can hide pellets and treats in the fibers.
For DIY, use a garden planter, cardboard box, or shallow tray. Fill it with shredded paper or hay.
Add some healthy rabbit food and treats like rabbit-friendly fresh grass (if your rabbit is used to eating this; otherwise introduce it slowly), herbs like mint or parsley, and some apple, carrot, or pumpkin.
Make sure you don’t overfeed your bunny with the treats as a high carb intake isn’t healthy for rabbits.
Your bunny will simply hop in the box or tray and start foraging for the food and treats they can smell. Your rabbit will happily nibble away.
An activity table lets your rabbit jump, hop, hide, and even chew.
Most of these activity tables, like the Activity Zone Rabbit Toy, are high enough so your rabbit can easily fit underneath and low enough so they can jump on or over the table.
Another option is the Oxbow Enriched Life Play Center.
You can also make your own activity table with wood. Hang some chew-friendly treats for your rabbit to enjoy.
Because rabbits are so smart, we need to keep them mentally engaged. Puzzles are an ideal way to do just that.
Rabbits can problem-solve, so most puzzles require the rabbit to figure out how the toy can dispense treats or how to access treats.
You’ll find that some puzzles even have beginner to advanced levels so your rabbit can progress.
If you are creative, you can even make your own puzzle activities for your rabbit to enjoy.
You can teach your bunny to “fetch” a toy and bring it back to you.
You can pretty much use anything as a throwing toy. Rabbits are especially fans of baby rattles and hard plastic baby toys.
Rabbits like to have a hiding spot so they can feel safe, relax, and sleep.
You may also want to add some hideaway toys to your obstacle course or other games you play with your rabbit.
This chewable Willow Tent is an example. However, you can easily make your own hideaway toys for your bun.
Use a cardboard box that you turn upside down and simply cut a square or circle entrance so your rabbit can easily get in and out.
Add some hay or a chew toy so your rabbit can chew if they’d like while they hide.
Mazes are another great way to keep your intelligent bunny entertained.
They need to make their way through to the maze, where you can pet them, give them praise, or leave them a treat.
If you can build a large maze, leave some treats here and there for your bunny to find; the treats can lead them through the maze or it can misdirect them too.
Bought maze toy options for your rabbit are the Oxbow Enriched Life Large Explore & Hide Customizable Maze, Maze Haven, or Bemodst S-Type Cat Tunnel.
You can build your own maze in your living room or yard with boxes, cardboard, or wooden planks.
Obstacle Course Toys
Some show rabbits are trained to compete in rabbit agility competitions or rabbit show jumping competitions.
An obstacle course is an ideal way to fully engage your rabbit. You can train them or let them explore. A fun obstacle course:
- Can test your rabbit’s intelligence
- Let them engage in natural activities like hiding, jumping, hopping, running, digging, chewing, and burrowing
- Ensure they get the exercise they need
You’d need to invest in a variety of equipment to make an obstacle course or look for rabbit agility sets.
You can also, of course, create your own obstacle or agility course for your rabbit and add more obstacles. You can:
- Use cardboard and boxes to make ramps.
- Use plastic, wood, PVC tubes, or cardboard tubes to make tunnels. Just ensure it is big enough so your rabbit can comfortably get through and not get stuck.
- Build jumping obstacles with cardboard, toilet paper rolls, wood, or twigs. Just ensure your rabbit doesn’t get hurt if they fall, so start small.
- Cut holes in cardboard boxes so your rabbit needs to go in one side and exit another.
- Use cardboard to build mazes.
A Lookout Spot Toy
Rabbits like to explore their world, whether this is on the ground or higher. Rabbits can jump or climb from one lookout spot to another.
This is great physical exercise for your bunny and also allows them to think about how to get from one point to another.
You can DIY these lookout points by making perching shelves and adding them to your home or outside area.
If you are handy-minded, you can build your own bunny castle or trees with wood and make really interesting designs.
Other Rabbit Toy Ideas
Here are some other rabbit toy ideas for your Ms. Furry Ears:
- Towels. Rabbits love to play with these, but make sure you regularly wash the towels.
- Rag dolls. Bunnies like to move them around and a rag doll can even be a tossing toy option.
- Mirrors. Ensure the mirror is sturdy or fixed to a wall so your rabbit doesn’t injure themselves.
- Dried-out pine cones are great chew toys. Wash and dry the pine cone first.
- Hanging tubes made with cardboard tubes, twine, rabbit treats, and hay. Your rabbit will enjoy tugging and pulling on the hanging tubes, especially since they can smell the yummy treats.
- Plastic slinkies like the Ware Fun Tunnel Play Tube or Slinky the Original Walking Spring Toy.
- Straw or plastic balls to roll or toss to your rabbit.
Also read: Are Rabbit Toys Safe for Birds?
8 Reasons Rabbits Need Toys
There are various reasons why your pet rabbit needs toys. Below are some of the important ones:
- Help rabbits play and get the physical stimulation they need to be healthy.
- Provide mental stimulation – did you know that rabbits are highly intelligent?
- Let your rabbit engage in natural rabbit activities – like chewing, digging, climbing, hiding, and foraging – safely.
- Keep your rabbit occupied so they don’t get bored, which can lead to depression or aggressive/destructive behavior.
- Provide you with entertainment as you watch your rabbit play.
- Let you bond with your rabbit as you spend time with them.
- Keep your household items like electrical cables and carpets safe(r) when rabbits have a healthy outlet to chew, dig, climb, etc. So it helps you bunny-proof your home.
- Extend your rabbit’s life since they remain interested in their environment and continue to learn and grow. Your rabbit also has the freedom to interact with objects in their surroundings safely.
Rabbit Toy Considerations and Care
When you consider the best toys for your rabbit, what factors should you keep in mind to ensure your rabbit is:
- Safe while playing?
- Stimulated mentally?
- Physically stimulated?
Picking out Safe Toys for Your Rabbit
There are various considerations all rabbit owners need to keep in mind when they pick out or make toys for their rabbit:
- Not every rabbit has the same personality. You know your rabbit by watching their behavior, so you’ll know what kind of toys your rabbit will enjoy.
My fluffy rabbit friend loved to dig into the carpet I had by the back door, so I knew that digging toys would be great for her.
I also experimented with other types of rabbit toys, and found that she also likes toys that stimulate her need to forage and chew.
Plus, she is getting pretty good at some of the puzzles I got her.
- Chew toys is a must for all rabbits. A rabbit’s teeth continuously grow and if they become overgrown, it causes a lot of dental and other health problems for your rabbit – not to mention expensive vet bills.
So while hay helps your rabbit’s teeth stay short, chew toys further ensure your rabbit’s teeth don’t become overgrown.
- Make sure the toys you get for your rabbit haven’t been treated with preservatives or chemicals. The rabbit toys shouldn’t contain anything toxic because this is harmful to your rabbit.
If the toy has been painted, read the label to check that non-toxic colorant or vegetable dyes have been used.
Keep this in mind if you DIY your rabbit’s toys.
- The rabbit toys shouldn’t have any small parts that can break off. If your rabbit ingests small toy parts, it could choke or it can cause an intestinal blockage, which could be fatal.
- The best rabbit toys are generally made from cardboard, paper, or hardwood.
What Toys Not to Get for Your Rabbit
There are toys and materials that are unsafe for rabbits:
- Don’t make toys with branches or sticks you pick up from your backyard, neighborhood, or nearby park. These may contain bacteria, insects, parasites, or mold that are harmful for your rabbit.
- Toys made from metal, soft rubber, carpet, fabric, or plastic toys with small pieces that can break off aren’t suitable for rabbits.
Some puzzle or maze toys can be made from these materials, but chew toys should be made from rabbit-safe materials like hardwood, cardboard, and paper.
- Wooden toys that have been treated with aromatic oils like cedar, pine, or fruit trees (avocado, plum, apricot, cherry, or peach) are not safe.
- Toys that are made with adhesives or large amounts of glue are unsafe for your rabbit.
Buying Rabbit Toys vs DIY Toys
Now that you know what to keep in mind so your bunny has the best toys for a rabbit and what to stay away from, should you buy rabbit toys or should you make them?
Depending on the toy and your rabbit’s personality, they may go through a toy really quickly.
I once gave my pet rabbit a chew toy in the morning, and well, a day later, she had completely destroyed it.
Buying 3-4 chew toys for her every week, or 9-12 chew toys a month is costly.
So in this case, it makes sense to use everyday items you have in your house to make safe toys for your rabbit.
Replacing a DIY toy that gets broken or destroyed is definitely a lot kinder on my wallet.
That brings me to my next point. Toys for your rabbit don’t need to cost you an arm and a leg.
The main purpose of your rabbit having toys is to keep them physically and mentally stimulated and to provide a safe space and way to do rabbit things.
If you make your rabbit’s toys, you get to be creative and make lots of new toys for your rabbit.
This will keep them entertained and curious about new things in their environment.
Rabbit Toy Care
It is a good idea to have a variety of toys available for your rabbit so they can play with their favorites but also explore new toys often.
This keeps your rabbit curious and lets them learn.
I also like to swap out my rabbit’s toys. So I take away the toys she is playing with now and give her other toys, and then I put the first batch back again in a few weeks.
This makes the toys feel new, making my pet rabbit curious and interested in the “new” toys every time.
If a toy is broken or in bad shape, replace the toy.
You should also keep your rabbit toys clean. I like to wash my rabbit’s toys with water and mild soap.
I let these air dry before I place them back in my rabbit’s cage or a hutch or exercise pen for Ms. Fluffy Ears to play with.
The Last Play
Ensuring your rabbit stays physically active is a lot more fun if there is learning and play involved.
The best toys for rabbits make sure your bunny is physically active while they also test and train their mental stamina to get through mazes, problem-solve to access hidden and yummy treats, and hop and climb from one area to another in a cat tree.
Rabbit toys don’t need to be expensive. I bought some of my rabbit’s toys – like a cat castle, a sturdy baby rattle, and puzzles.
I also made Ms. Fluffy Ears’ chew toys, digging and foraging toys, and obstacle courses.
Happy playing with your bun!
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