Rabbit breed

Discussion in 'General Rabbit Discussion' started by poweas, Mar 17, 2018.

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  1. Mar 17, 2018 #1

    poweas

    poweas

    poweas

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    Hello, I am looking for a rabbit who will be calm, not very energetic, and give a lot of petting, max 6lbs. Please mention at least 2 breeds.
    Thanks :)
     
  2. Mar 17, 2018 #2

    Aki

    Aki

    Aki

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    I'm pretty sure what you want is called a cat. I'm not trying to be mean or anything but I think it's best to tell you things before you get a rabbit, get disappointed and are tempted to rehome them. Rabbits have never been bred for friendliness or anything other than physical appearance, like cats or dogs. They actually evolved very little from their wild cousins. You can't tell how a rabbit will be like from their breed even if some broad trends are said to be quite often true. Rabbits are generally not calm, they often are very anxious and skittish animals which is completely normal considering their place in the food chain. The big 'meat breeds' are considered to be the most relaxed ones. The smaller, the more stressed out and energetic they will be. Netherland dwarves are said to be the worse. I've got one, she's still running around like a mad bunny at almost 9 years old and would go crazy if you tried to cage her. She's also particularly unfriendly, which is also something you hear a lot about Nethies. But a young bunny from any breed will move around a lot, need a big space to move around (a rabbit needs at least 5 hours out of their cage and that's really the bare minimum) and WILL destroy things (electrical cords, shoes, everything with fabric, books, everything with wood, wallpapers, carpets... can be taken as targets and I've lost at least one thing in every category during the past 10 years despite bunny-proofing with care and being there most of the day).
    Rabbits who like to cuddle and show affection are extraordinarily rare. Most of them don't like to be handled and will tolerate a pet on the nose with their four feet firmly planted on the floor but that's about it. Most rabbits like other rabbits a lot more than they like humans and I personally advocate keeping them in neutered male / spayed female pairs for that reason.
    You need to be aware that if you ever get a female rabbit you will need to spay her (around 200$). This is not a spay of convenience and it's not optionnal. Rabbits have 85% risk of uterine / ovarian cancer if you don't spay them, not even speaking about how dirty and aggressive an intact rabbit can be (my youngest one used to spray pee on the walls, bite and scratch the floor in the middle of the night before getting neutered, just saying...). Rabbits are not cheap to keep - they necessitate vet care, often urgently when a problem occurs, and they need a lot of good quality hay, vegetables and some good pellets everyday.
    If you are still interested in having a bunny after taking all of that into account, I suggest you try to find a shelter around you to go and meet some rabbits. Whatever you do, don't buy from a petshop - most rabbits there are ill, not weaned properly and a lot of them will die a few weeks after buying them.
    I strongly suggest you go and read the House rabbit society website for more informations.
    If you have doubts, you might want to look at guinea pigs too - they are smaller and friendlier than rabbits.
     
  3. Mar 17, 2018 #3

    Hermelin

    Hermelin

    Hermelin

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    Netherland Dwarf are the cuddles bunnies I’ve own and met but it might be just my luck only having cuddle bunnies that love cuddles and being picked up.

    Also lop bunnies as mini lop, english lop or Holland Lop many thinks are friendly and cuddle.

    But as Aki says rabbits aren’t often the cuddles and you can never know what personalities they have if you aren’t adopting adult rabbits.
     
  4. Mar 17, 2018 #4

    Preitler

    Preitler

    Preitler

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    Well, many meat breed and meat mutt lines are bred to be rather relaxed and friendly. Also good pet rabbit breeders breed for character (with astonishing results) - but imho with meat rabbits most do not keep a nasty, skittish rabbit anyway even without making that a breeding goal, and there is no incentive to select for cute appearance or fur colours. It just is more fun to work with friendly animals.
    My free range house bunny is a intact 4.5kg meat mutt buck, a rather special, laid back, happy and friendly dude.

    But it really depends on the breeder and line, not so much on what breed of rabbit. And more than that on the individual character of the rabbit.

    Getting an adult rescue is a way to have at least some clue what the rabbit is like. But you would need not to focus too much on breed, size etc. and have someone with you who actually knows something about rabbit behaviour - a rabbit that seems calm to you in the pet shop might actually be skittish and in panic freeze.

    About cuddles: That's totally individual and depends a lot on you if a rabbit accepts pets and cuddles, or even returns some by cleaning his tongue on your face after eating his poop giving bunny kisses ;), but it's always down to the rabbit, although you can get far with patience, consistency and treats with most rabbits.

    But it definitly isn't as easy as buying a calm and docile breed, rabbits are not like dogs where you can tell that a Husky or Border Collie will be very energetic, or Labradoodles make great pets.

    About that "not very energetic", well, rabbits enjoy having space to move and do bunny things.
    Of my 5 girls 2 are somewhat couch potatoes who return to their hutch after just an hour of garden time (one let me pet her, the other refuses to be touched although she isn't skittish or so), one is a hyperactive digger, great destroyer of cables and furniture, and just short of going for world dominion, and two are confident, stalwart, sometimes grumpy girls that like the outdoors - all from the same stock.

    Don't be impressed by cute rabbits on youtube videos, there is a reason those got filmed and presented to the world - your's isn't going to be like any of them.

    Your post leaves the impression that you think rabbits are cuddly, sweet, low maintenance animals, like cats, which they are not exactly. True, many live in small back yard hutches to be grabbed and cuddled when someone feels like it, but where's the fun in that?
     
  5. Mar 17, 2018 #5

    Blue eyes

    Blue eyes

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    As the others have already stated, breed does not determine temperament. If you are looking for a particular personality, the only way to find that is to meet some individual rabbits that are already fixed/adult. Rabbit rescues have plenty of rabbits looking for a good home. Their rabbits are all fixed. Interact with individual rabbits and see which one you like and which one seems to like you too. Choose based on personality, not on breed.

    Don't buy into the idea that you're better off getting a baby. You won't change a rabbit's personality by handling it as a baby alot. In fact, doing so can even have the opposite effect -- causing a shy bunny to become even more withdrawn.

    I'd have to agree with the others that you may have some false ideas about what rabbits are truly like as pets. This isn't unusual. Rabbits just look so cuddly and docile, that people just assume they are. Also baby rabbits actually are usually docile and handle-able, but that typically changes with the onset of hormones (4-7 months of age). But people see the baby rabbits in pet stores and naturally assume that what they see is what they'll get -- not so!

    There is a list of common myths pertaining to rabbits as pets here. Might want to take a look and be sure you know what to expect (and what not to expect).
     

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