We’ve compiled a list of rabbit facts to help you learn about these adorable pets.
The popularity of rabbits can be traced back to roman times and were mainly used as a food source.
But as more breeds were introduced and a varying of coat colours were developed, thus came the hobby of keeping rabbits as pets and for breeding.
Rabbit breeds, coat colours, patterns, and fur types are extensive!
Here are Some Interesting Rabbit Facts
Angora – The Angora rabbit breed is the oldest rabbit as we know of.
It has a lot of fur and must be groomed each day to prevent knotting. Trimming the fur must also be done regularly every three months. The fur can actually be sheared like a sheep, and the angora fur made into wool.
Chinchilla – Chinchilla Giganta breed is very quiet rabbit that gives birth to very big litters and is popular with hobby breeders. They have a white base with black ticking and a white belly.
Dutch – the Dutch is one of the oldest rabbit breeds; it has distinct markings on head, eyes, cheeks and ears. It is a very popular pet.
English Lop – The English Lop is not always kept as a pet and is not popular in all countries. Its ears do flop and need special care.
French Lop – The French Lops are very quiet, calm and kind breed of rabbits. Very good for a children’s pet. They have a firm muscular body and a wide chest. The ears are thick and fleshy.
Himalayan – Himalayan breed is quiet and friendly and hails from the UK. Very popular with breeders and as a pet.
New Zealand Red – This breed is very quiet, but more active than the New Zealand black or White. They are a very popular show rabbit for their beautiful markings and vibrant reds.
Rex – Rex breed is very good natured and has a lovely short soft velvety fur.
There are 47 recognised rabbit’s breeds alone in America and many more over the world. With all breeds their care and temperament is different.
Rabbits technically belong to the Leporid (Lagomorpha) family, and are mammals.
Lago is a derived Greek word for Hae, Morpho, meaning form, some kind of Hare.
Orycto, Greek for dugout or digger Lagus: meaning Hare, Digging Hare (Rabbit)
Is Latin, meaning underground passage.
Here are some interesting rabbit facts
There are about twenty five different species of rabbits, only one has been domesticated: oryctolagus cuniculas.
The front teeth of a rabbit are very sharp and extremely strong and never stop growing, these front teeth are mostly used for gnawing and must be worn down for the rabbits well being.
These two rows of front teeth are called incisors. Each quality of the rabbit serves a purpose, from its fur coat to keep warm; its oily fur also helps to stop the water soaking through to its skin.
Its lean streamline body built for speed, to escape predators. Rabbit’s sense of smell and sound is very alert; its little twitching nose can pick up even the faintest smells.
Its ears can move in all directions and pick up sounds of danger. Rabbits were first released into Australia in 1859, by Thomas Austin. He released 24 European rabbits to use as hunting them for sport.
The rabbits breed very quickly and became a huge problem for Australian native wildlife. The number of rabbits spread right across Australia, leaving permanent damage as they went.
Thus the Myxomatosis infection was created to kill of the bulk of the population. Rabbits are still not very welcome in farming communities and are illegal to keep them as pets in Queensland.
Pet Rabbit Care
Where to get your rabbit and how to care for it? The first thing you should do is try not to get your new pet rabbit on impulse as you should make sure you are prepared for the commitment of a pet.
Also consider the size of rabbit, to the size of your hutch ( A rabbit needs about five times its size so it can move freely.)
You can get a baby rabbit from a litter, when they are over six weeks old; after they are ready to leave their mother, sometimes where possible it is best to leave with the mother for 8-10 weeks as the kitten can adjust itself to be more independent before leaving its mother.
You may know of someone who has baby rabbits, also from animal shelters is a good place to get a pet rabbit or your local pet shop or breeder.
What to Look For?
When choosing a rabbit, try to spot a playful and the most energetic kitten. Ask if it is male (Buck) or female (Doe). Females can cohabit, the best combination is two sister from the same litter, they get along very well, males will fight together once mature.
Check the health of the rabbit, that is has a clean nose and ears, teeth, bright eyes, and that the fur is clean and dry.
What Breed to go for?
There are so many breeds of rabbits how to choose? An adult rabbit can weigh from 1kg – 10 kg depending on its breed and its sex. Types of fur can be an issue, Long fur takes more grooming and care, as in Angora or Cashmere rabbits.
Rex Rabbits have the velvety fur. Coat colours can vary, they may be one colour, black, white, grey or chocolate, or patterned coats, patches or spots and stripes. Choose a rabbit breed which best suits your family and the room you have for your pet rabbit.
What to have at home to care for your pet rabbit?
A suitable sized hutch / cage. Also Think about an exercise area for your pet rabbit as to get fresh air and sunshine in a shady place outside.
Litter tray to litter train your pet rabbit, place litter tray inside hutch filled with some cat litter of choice, (best paper based or crystal, regularly check as your rabbit may eat some of the litter and you may need to change to a different sort), some hay on top, and place a few droppings inside the litter tray.
You can also place their grain bowl inside the tray as they eat in the tray to encourage them to go in there. When your rabbit goes into the tray reward with their favourite treat and they will continue to use the tray.
You will need fresh Hay, straw, newspaper to line pen, food bowl and water bowl or dripper. Grain and a container to store it in, fresh fruit and vegetables.
Cleaning equipment includes, vinegar for wiping out pen, dust pan and brush, rubber gloves.
Toys, chews and things for you rabbit to bite on, e.g., toilet roll old telephone books, or a block of wood.
Make sure you have a hutch when you arrive home with you new pet, keep your new pet rabbit as calm and quiet for the first few days until it settles in. Do not leave it in the car after purchasing as it may get very hot and scared.
Protect your new rabbit from droughts, rain and the wind. Caring for your new pet rabbit is a responsibility, but your rabbit will reward you with its affection and company.
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