Cutest and Most Popular Breeds of Rabbits As Pets

What are some of the most common rabbit breeds kept as pets? What are the cutest breeds of rabbits? What is the difference between a rabbit and a hare? Is a rabbit a rodent? What are the most popular breeds of rabbits? What does a Dutch rabbit look l

To note, rabbits are not rodents, they are lagomorphs. Rabbits are not the same as hares. Hares are larger and their young are born with fur, open eyes, and a better ability to move around. There are at least 25 species of rabbit, including wild rabbits. Those rabbits we keep as pets descended from European wild rabbits.

Dutch Rabbits

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Dutch rabbits are very common as pets, they have short fur, and are often marked rather like an Oreo cookie with a white blaze up their nose. Although often black and white they can be other colors and white. They have small ears and are compact little pets. Dutch rabbits are one of the oldest breeds of rabbit.

Netherland Dwarf

photo source - note the cord - this is not safe because rabbits do chew cords.

These are the smallest rabbits, and should weigh no more than 2.5 pounds (for showing). Because they are small they are very common as pets, people often think they can house them in smaller cages, however these rabbits are playful and active and should have a lot of space in their cage as well as a lot of time out of their cage.

Lop Rabbits

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There are several different breeds of “Lop”, a term that refers to the rabbit's long, and floppy ears. Some of the more common Lob breeds include the small Mini Lop and Holland Lop, as well as the English Lop which was one of the original Lop breeds. Lop rabbits need large cages, if too cramped they tend to step on their ears a lot.

Angora Rabbits

photo source - English Angora Rabbit 

These, again, are a type of rabbit of which there are many breeds. Angora rabbits are high maintenance as they need regular grooming. The English, and Giant, Angora rabbits need constant care, but even the French Angora does require regular grooming. If neglected their hair forms painful mats.

Rex Rabbits

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Rex rabbits come in two sizes, the mini Rex and the standard sized, which is simply called a Rex. They are very soft to touch and have been popular as pets although they are actually considered a fur breed. They are considered a hardy breed of rabbit, and are considered fairly intelligent. 

New Zealand

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New Zealand rabbits are very large. They are often marketed for meat at the age of 8 weeks. They require more space than smaller breeds, and as they were not breed for temperament, some can be aggressive. The pelts of New Zealand rabbits are often used as fur.  They are sometimes kept as pets.

Lionhead Rabbits

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This is a newer rabbit not yet formally recognized as a breed in the US, but they have been recognized in the UK, and are becoming popular in pet stores.  They are small with longer hair, especially around the face.  Lionhead rabbits require regular grooming.

Rabbits as Pets

If you are interested in getting a rabbit as a pet, please check at your local animal shelter, as they are sometimes for adoption with cages for free. Be sure to read more on rabbits, rabbit care, and feeding, before getting a rabbit as a pet to make sure they are the right pet for you.  Rabbits can be litter trained and need at least 2 hours out of their cage every day.

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Emily Dixon
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