Dwarf Rabbit Breeds

Dwarf Rabbit Breeds

Little cuddly balls of fur, with snuffly noses.. this description is reserved only for dwarf rabbits, perhaps the most appealing of all rabbit sub-species. Scroll below for a listing of the various dwarf breeds, that are popular pets and show animals.
Rabbits with their cute sniffling noses and oh-so soft fur make great companions, to amuse, to train and to cuddle and snuggle up to. Rabbits as a species, also require less maintenance and grooming and their antics are highly amusing, from hopping around to chasing after nothing. One popular domestic rabbit breed is the dwarf rabbit.

As their name suggests, dwarf rabbits are compact and very small in size as compared to other rabbit breeds. The normal weight expected from this breed should not exceed 3.5 or 4 pounds. They also have a distinctive low or close-to-the-ground carriage and arch. Caring is also easier, as their compact size allows them to be kept indoors or out, with smaller hutches and they also consume less food. There are various dwarf rabbit breeds, some so small, they can fit in the palm of your hand and some with upright or floppy ears. Below, some of the breeds are listed, along with their physical and behavioral characteristics.

Different Dwarf Rabbit Breeds

Dwarf Lop
Weight: 1.6 kg - 2.5 kg
Colors: Black, white, blue, sable, seal point, fawn, agouti
Key Features:
  • Long, plush, droopy ears
  • Small and compact build
  • Thick dense short haired coat
Description: This dwarf breed is the British equivalent of the American Mini Lop. They are gentle and very loving and make good cuddlers. But they are not meant for small children, unless suitable adult supervision is present. With the right amount of attention and lots of love, this bunny breed is very caring and snugly and can be effectively house-trained. Their compact size makes them ideal for apartments or small spaces.

Netherland Dwarf
Weight: 500 g to 1.6 kg
Colors: Blue, black, chocolate, sable point, fawn, blue-eyed white, Himalayan, chestnut, tortoiseshell, to name a few
Key Features:
  • Smallest domestic rabbit breed
  • Perked up, alert ears, located high on the head
  • Short haired, thin coat
  • Large eyes in relation to bodies with short, oval faces
Description: This breed has a deceptively babyish and infantlike appearance, even as adults. One look into their big, bright eyes and you'll be going "awwwww" for a long time. They are docile, with some rabbits being a little timid. They need a little patience and very gentle handling, especially to get over their shyness. Once they get a little bold, they are quick and eager to learn and are good pets for children. Care must be taken with their diet, as they have a very delicate digestive system.

American Dwarf Hotot
Weight: 2½ - 3 lbs
Colors: Pure snow white, with black rings close to the eye
Key Features:
  • Small but stocky build
  • Round and broad head type with no visible neck area
  • Short alert ears with bright, round eyes with black eyebands
  • Very soft but thick fur that falls back into place if touched
Description: The darkened eye coloring and white soft fur, give this dwarf breed, a very exotic but mischievous look. Dwarf Hotots originated as a breed in Germany but are popular in the States, due to their very compact build and pleasing personalities. These are playful little critters with sweet dispositions. Dwarf Hotots can be trained and are not timid or shy, in fact they crave attention especially cuddling. They are suitable for both adults and children. Though the only accepted coloring is pure white with black eyebands, chocolate eyeband Dwarf Hotots are now recognized as a variant of the breed.

American Polish Rabbit
Weight: 2½-3½ lbs
Colors: Ruby eyed white, blue eyed white, black, blue, chocolate and broken pattern
Key Features:
  • Short but narrow ears, that touch each other to the tip
  • Very big and bright eyes that dominate the face
  • Small head with cheeks
Description: The "Little Aristocrat" is the nickname of this dwarf rabbit, perhaps for his bold and not-backing down stare. But the Polish rabbit makes a very calm and social pet, with a lot of intelligence. They can be house trained, will listen and obey voice commands and signals and are affectionate and friendly. They are ideal pets for small children, as they love to be petted and are patient. Their compact size makes them easy to keep indoors and handle their maintenance. This dwarf rabbit's lifespan is between 5-6 years on an average.

Holland Lop
Weight: 3 - 4 lbs
Colors: Agouti, black tortoiseshell, broken black, broken orange, chocolate, blue eyed white and ruby eyed white
Key Features:
  • Short, round and stocky bodies with a large head
  • Long floppy, lop ears
  • Very round and chubby faces with typical bunny noses
  • Fur is thick and dense but short haired
Description: This is one of the most unique small rabbit breeds around, due to their floopy, falling ears. They are equally famous for their very gentle and loving nature and very calm, zen-like attitude. Don't be fooled by their very innocent expressions, these rabbits are also quite alert and love to hop around and play, so be prepared for a lot of "catch the rabbit" games! Compact size and adoring nature have made this breed a favorite pet rabbit breed, especially for young and first-time pet owners.

Britannia Petite
Weight: 2¼ lbs
Colors: Black, chestnut agouti, sable marten, ruby eyed white and black otter
Key Features:
  • Arched profile, with non existent neck
  • The body tapers from shoulders to the hips, which are narrow
  • Wedge-shaped small head with small but upright, nearly joined together ears in a stiff stance
  • Bold round eyes in the middle of the face
Description: This is not a true dwarf breed but rather is one of the smallest domestic rabbit breeds. These rabbits are meant for the center stage of attention and love to pose and show off. They are principally used as a show breed. Britannia Petites have developed a negative impression of being difficult and not suitable as pets but this can be due to improper training or handling. These rabbits are very lively, alert and intelligent, as such they require a firm but patient hand during training. They are not meant as pets for children and require an older or mature owner. With the right attitude, this is one energetic little showman, who can be very social and entertaining.

There is no good or bad breed of rabbit, so assigning names and reputations like difficult or mean to a rabbit breed is unfair to both the breeders and the rabbit itself. Poor training or mishandling can make a nervous and timid animal, bite or nip or act out. With children, it is best to supervise their handling and behavior around the rabbit, at least for some time. Any one of the above dwarf rabbit breeds make companionable and very loving pets, with minimal grooming and looking after.
Advertisement