As it is custom every year, I once more emerge from the depth of the internet to bring everyone on the forum the joy of bunnies during their yearly festival!
As I have done this for so many years now that I am slowly running out of interesting bunny things to post about - but also being aware that just posting bunny images would still be perfect, because bunnies are perfect - I have decided to keep it rather simple this year and introduce you to ten different breeds of bunnies. Note that all bunnies are the best bunnies, so this is not a ranking!
A fun fact to start: Just like a group of crows is called a ‘murder of crows’, there is a word for a group of bunnies. It’s a ‘fluffle of bunnies’! Clearly, this is the peak of the English language!
Now, for the bunny-breeds:
1. Flemish Giants
These big bunnies are the largest breed there is! The biggest one weighs 22kg (49lb) and is 1,3m (4ft 3in) long! That’s a really big bunny who can easily block your couch when stretching out on it - but I’m sure you wouldn’t mind sitting on the floor to please a bunny.
Flemish Giants are usually super-chill, really docile and basically a ‘gentle giant’. They do come in different fur colors, but rarely have any pattern. Overall, they make great pets as long as you have a lot of space and a lot of food ready and waiting!
2. Dwarf Hotot
The complete opposite of the Flemish Giants, these cute little bunnies are small! There is also a much larger variant of them - the Blanc de Hotot - but their looks are the same: They’re white bunnies with an “eyeliner” of a different color around their eyes.
As dwarf rabbits, they’re really small, weighing less than 2kg (less than 3 pounds). Most are really friendly bunnies who are very outgoing and energetic - proving that a smaller bunny doesn’t need less space than a bigger one.
Angora bunnies are super-fluffy! There are actually 11 different kinds of Angora bunny, but all of them have amazing fur. Bunnies actually aren’t having the same allergy-causing qualities as many other animals because they are perfect, so the angora fur of bunnies won’t give you any issues!
These bunnies obviously need a lot of care, though. Their fur grows around 3cm/1in per month, so you need to groom your bunny a lot. Every three or four month, you also need to shear your angora bunny. Given how many breeds there are, their sizes can vary from dwarf angora bunnies to giant ones.
4. Netherland Dwarf
One of the best-known and tiniest bunny breeds is the Netherland Dwarf. Weighing 1.1–2.5 pounds (0.50–1.13 kg), these guys and girls are small and cute! They’re gentle, friendly pet bunnies, but they are often a lot more energetic than larger breeds and can be skittish until they have learned to trust their human. They are also very smart, so litter-training them is often easier than it is with other breeds.
Netherland Dwarf bunnies come in incredibly many colors, but their iconic look - big head and eyes, small body and very tiny ears - makes them easy to recognize. They’re also my personal favourites.
These are the cutest, little lions you will ever see! Their wool mane encircling their head does make them look like lions. Their ears are also really small and they often weigh between 2-3 pounds.
There are actually two possibilities when it comes to their iconic mane - a double mane (two mane genes) or a single mane (one mane gene). A single maned bunny may lose their mane over their life and it’s also thinner than the one on double maned bunnies. Double maned bunnies are the ones with the thick mane around their head and also sometimes have wool around their flanks.
When it comes to personality, they are also very smart and can be clicker-trained. When they don’t feel safe, they tend to be very skittish, but once they trust their human, they make great pets.
6. Holland Lop
The breed most often referenced if you are looking for a bunny with the ears going down. They’re also one of the most popular breeds in the US, as they’re small (they weigh up to 4lb/1,8kg), but actually also pretty muscular bunnies.
They’re very calm and friendly, with the males often more relaxed, but the females being a lot neater and less destructive. Overall, they are great pets, but like all lop-eared bunnies, they can suffer a lot more easily from ear infections than breeds which have their ears erect.
7. Checkered Giant
This is one of the rare bunny breeds which comes only in a single pattern, which defines the breed. They are bigger bunnies (weighing around 12 pounds/5,5kg). Their fur is white with black or blue ears, eye-rings, a butterfly-shaping nose-marking, cheek flashes and a dorsal stripe.
These big bunnies are often not as affectionate as other bunny breeds, but that doesn’t mean they are mean. They are gentle and friendly, but simply not as cuddly or needy.
Once, Dutch bunnies were the most popular bunnies, but that was before dwarf bunnies came along. Still, they are a very iconic breed easily recognized by their fur pattern and they still are in the top ten of most popular breeds. Their ideal weight is around 4,5lbs/2kg.
They have a compact, rounded body and head, short ears and, despite black-and-white being the most known color, come in different color options. As most smaller bunnies, they make good pets and are usually rather calm and easy-going.
Like it is with the Angora bunnies, the ‘rex’ in Rex bunnies also refers to their type of fur, which is often described as very plush and velvety as it is very dense and every hair has the same length.
Most Rex breeds are medium-sized bunnies around 7.5–10.5 pounds (3.4–4.8 kg), with a broad head but proportionally smaller feet. Like most bigger breeds, the females have a dewlap (a large flap of skin under the skin) which you can see when they loaf. Note that there is also a “Mini Rex” - a much smaller breed which has the same, velvety fur.
Rex rabbits often have a lower activity level compared to other breeds. They love attention and are very socialable and, different from other breeds, Rex rabbits also often enjoy being picked up!
This is one of the oldest known bunny breeds, with fur patterns similiar to Siamese cats. The babies are actually born in one, solid color, but within a few months, their color develops and their nose, ears, tails and paws take on their distinctive, dark spots. They are also small bunnies (3-5lb (1.4-2.3kg)), but their life expectancy can be a bit lower, with around 4-5 years.
These bunnies are very mellow and are usually happy to be handled and cuddled. Given how old the breed is, their temperament was a big factor in it being used in the development of several other breeds.
And there you have it - ten of the many, many bunny-breeds there are! Note that there are some breeds which - like it is in dogs - are not ‘good’ breeds (like bunnies with way-too-long ears) and impact the quality of life of the bunny, so I obviously didn’t mention any of those. Also never breed a bunny with lop-ears with a bunny with erect ears - the resulting bunny will have cute ‘helicopter-ears’, but because of the different skull-shapes of the parents, the new bunny is a lot more likely to have teeth or other head-related issues!
And now, enjoy looking at the cute bunnies and I hope you have a happy, hoppy and healthy Easter! See you next year!