Rabbit Breeds: part one
Welcome to our series on rabbit breeds. Here, we'll discuss the differences in temperament, appearance, and friendliness within these officially ARBA recognized breeds. There are 49 of these as it stands and we will cover each one. We will not be covering those breeds currently in development as of this 2018 writing--only those that are currently cleared for the show ring.
If viable, we will also talk about ideal body style or coloration as necessary. Many rabbits differ in their standard according to what their use is. We'll talk more about that individually.
The Mini Lop is our first breed. I have owned a few lop bunnies- including Zane! Known for it's floppy ears, this feisty little rabbit has gained serious popularity over the past 20 years. They're a very large rabbit in a tiny little body, with lots of opinions. Some may say this rabbit has "little dog" syndrome but I find myself disagreeing with that. Most behavioral problems in the mini lop come from a wealth of hormones. By puberty, these little guys get a big bunnytude! A little training never hurt anyone and, with a bit of work, these rabbits are gregarious and happy with a little positive reinforcement.
Recognized colors, currently, under ARBA are Chinchilla, Chestnut Agouti, Lynx, Opal, Black, White, Ruby-Eyed White, Blue-Eyed White, Blue, Chocolate, Lilac, Otter, Orange, and Tri Color. Any combination of these solid or broken is acceptable. Wild-type, castor, red, and several other colors make excellent pets but are not recognized as show-worthy animals at this time.
The mini rex is an astoundingly plush bunny. Indeed, like their standard brethren, these rabbits were developed for the fur trade. That hardly matters in today's world where we value them more for their personalities than their pelts. These rabbits consider themselves royalty and may be a bit finicky in a setup that they consider beneath themselves. Mini rex want a palace in the sky and aren't really willing to budge much on that. However, these rabbits are great cuddlers and some of the more outgoing rabbits available today.
Mini rex come in an extremely wide variety of colors. These include black, blue, castor, chinchilla, chocolate, himalayan, lilac, lynx, marten, opal, otter, red, sable, sable point, seal, tortoise, red-eyed white, blue-eyed white, and any variety of broken in these colors. Tan has been approved for development but is not yet available to be shown as of this writing. We expect it will soon pass as the dedication to proofing that color is very, very strong within the community. Orange and Amber are both on the platform for approval soon as well. If your breeder cannot tell you the difference between blue and opal, do not get your rabbit there.
Blanc de Hotot
The hotot (as it is commonly shortened) is a placid medium breed of rabbit with only one recognized color. A white rabbit with correct black eyeliner is a rarity indeed and owners rarely give them up. These are a very quiet breed and do not do well in loud settings. If considering a blanc de hotot, make sure you can provide the quiet they desire.