Can rabbits see in the dark? Certainly. Like smaller animals, they have adapted to be able to escape from larger predators even in the dark. A strong sense of smell also helps them move in the dark and stay alert to their surroundings.
But just because they can see in the dark doesn’t mean their eyesight is that good or that staying in the dark for long periods of time is good for their eye health.
For people who have rabbits as pets, an important question to ask is whether or not you should leave the light on at night. We will find the answer after taking into consideration some important factors.
The habits of sleep
A rabbit’s sleeping habits are complicated because they are neither night (nocturnal) nor day (diurnal) animals. Since they are normally most lively at dusk or dawn, anyone who gets a rabbit will need to make sure to listen to their movements during the night.
Consequently, people who have rabbits are advised to leave the light on at night in their enclosure.
In their natural habitat, rabbits stay in their burrows during the day. As night approaches, they activate, spending their time socializing, foraging for food, and tidying up their burrows. When it is almost dawn they return to their homes.
Rabbits are very delicate creatures and excessive exposure to both light and dark can be bad for their health. You should consult your veterinarian about the different levels of light intensity if you have to expose your rabbit to different hours.
The negative effects on your rabbit’s health
If you have a rabbit, you may need to slightly modify your habits and schedules to meet your pet’s natural needs. This also applies to your rabbit. According to recent studies, when rabbits are constantly or moderately exposed to light, their health suffers.
However there will be no visible symptoms of a disease, but excessive weight is achieved by those who are constantly kept in the light. These rabbits face the danger of visual impairment and fertility-related problems.
The bodies of the rabbits in both situations after their death and the lesions that were found in their brains were analyzed. This indicates a higher level of stress when they were alive.
Like most animals, people have also domesticated rabbits. It is important to remember that they are used to surviving in a wild environment and providing them with a home as close to their natural habitat is best for their health.
You should find a vet who works specifically with exotic animals and ask for advice on food, games, and light needs for your rabbit.
The ways rabbits developed
Rabbits have developed in such a way that their eyes are located on the sides of their head. This allows them to have a 360-degree view to observe predators approaching from all points even above them. However, there are some disadvantages to this.
- There is a blind spot just in front of the rabbit’s nose, about 10 degrees. You should therefore not place the food right in front of the rabbit as it may not see it.
- Due to this fact, the sight of each eye does not coincide, the rabbit cannot correctly determine at what distance an object is positioned.
Can rabbits see in the dark – How well can rabbits see?
The eye contains the rods and cones. The function of the cones is to collect different wavelengths. While our eye contains three wavelengths, a rabbit’s eye contains only two.
This makes the rabbit partially color blind. An area of the rabbit’s eye known as the centralis is also partially jagged causing the rabbit’s sight to become grainy,
How does the rabbit recognize you?
The rabbit’s sight is not very clear. But together with sight, it uses to recognize your scent, the movements, and the type of your voice.
It should be concluded that most rabbits can see in the dark. They do not feel changes in light but are more sensitive to other changes, such as unusual smells and sudden sounds.
You should put your rabbit in a cage as is most advised as if you let it loose it could run away, get hurt or eat dangerous items. Don’t expect them to follow a specific sleep routine.
It may also be that during the night they have to do alternating with moments of sleep. It may be safer to leave some light on instead of leaving them totally dark overnight.