Meet the Rabbit Breeds
Are all rabbits the same? Definitely not! The American Rabbit Breeders Association, also known as ARBA, recognizes 50 breeds of rabbits. Many breeds feature several varieties. And that only represents the breeds that currently show within ARBA. Worldwide, those numbers are much larger. To meet the breeds of rabbits, you might travel to the National Convention that ARBA hosts each year.
Note- we’ll be adding more rabbit breed information each week. Please stop back often!
Let’s take some time to meet the breeds!
Considerations when choosing a breed of rabbit
Choosing a pet rabbit is not the same as selecting one for show, although some people have show rabbits as pets, too. However, if your fur pal is not destined for the show stage, what criteria should you consider?
First, understand that while each breed has certain distinctions, your chosen pet might not show all of those. We have had Netherland Dwarf rabbits that were very calm and cuddly, although the breed is not known for that. And one of the Holland Lops that my daughter had was not very friendly, though most Holland rabbitss are great pets.
Also, look at the breeds as a first step. In fact, your pet might well be a mix of two or more breeds. Mixed breed rabbits, just as with other pet animals, make just as great pets.
As you look through the various breeds of rabbits, consider the best size for you and your family. The tiny dwarfs seem more pocket sized than the Giant breeds. But then compare those sizes to that of a toy dog. In fact, the dwarf rabbits are usually a bit smaller than a dog that is considered a tiny toy. And the giant breeds, often weighing more than 15 pounds, might be comparable to a small miniature poodle.
However, don’t discount the Flemish Giant, known for being a gentle giant. And of course, those mixed breeds of any size.
Lop-Eared Rabbit Breeds
Most of us love the lops for their sweet expressions. But they also have quite a sweet personality, too. While individuals differ, most lops make great pets. Not only do they enjoy people contact, but they show quite a character, too. We have found them to be quite comical and entertaining!
You will need to pay attention to those ears, though. Upright ears offer better air circulation. So with the lop ears, you need to check them more often and keep them clean.
For those who enjoy a little grooming and want a calmer lap rabbit, the long-haired breeds might be a good fit. Bred to withstand the grooming that they require, these rabbits are usually content to sit with your and enjoy the peaceful life. Of course, they might still find a little fun in life, but usually remain calmer than some other, more animated breeds.
Small Rabbit Breeds
We’ll include the dwarfs in this category, along with breeds up to about 7 pounds. Yes, this is quite a list and each will have special characteristics. Visit the individual pages to get to know each breed.
Medium and Large Rabbit Breeds
The American Chinchilla
The English Angora
Meet the Giants!
Some people believe bigger is better. These rabbits usually weigh 15 pounds or more. Don’t let their size deter you, though. Many of the giant rabbit breeds fit the tag of “Gentle Giant” and make great pets.
If you have the space and the budget, these rabbit breeds often make fantastic pets. About the size of a small breed dog like a miniature poodle, they adjust to indoor life quite well. And their larger size comes with a large personality, too.
So Many Choices of Rabbit Breeds
With 50 ARBA breeds, many more not yet in ARBA, and so many mixes, you might find it difficult to choose just one pet. And in fact, rabbits are quite social and can usually be kept in pairs or trios. Of course, you will want to ensure they are spayed or neutered. Even if they are the same sex, we found that hormonal activity often causes disagreements.. In fact, serious fights might ensue!
Whatever size, color, and breed you choose, keep in mind that pet rabbits often live as long as a pet dog. A rabbit is not a pet for a month or two. These fur pals might live over 10 years with proper care. Plan accordingly.
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