While there are over 300 breeds of domestic rabbits across the globe, the American Rabbit Breeders Association (ARBA) currently recognizes 49 unique rabbit breeds while the British Rabbit Council (BRC) recognizes 106 breeds.
There are 62 species of rabbits and hares worldwide, with fifteen different species of rabbits and hares live throughout North America.
All domesticated rabbits are originated from European rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus).
A domestic (or domesticated) rabbit (Oryctolagus), more commonly known as a pet rabbit, a bunny, or a bunny rabbit is any of the domesticated varieties of the European rabbit species. They may be considered a pocket pet depending on their size. A male rabbit is a buck, a female is a doe, and a young rabbit is a kit or kitten.
Typically, domesticated rabbits weigh between 2 and 11 pounds. The domesticated rabbits can be fed on commercially produced rabbit food, pellets, hay, green food, root vegetables, tree bark, herbs and apples.
The gestation period of a rabbit is 31 days and the typical litter size ranges from 6-8 young. The lifespan varies with breed. And there are some really, really cute breeds.
Keeping A Rabbit As A Pet
Keeping a rabbit as pet requires a good training system to prevent any unnecessary destruction or hassle. For example, furniture and carpet chewing problems, pseudo pregnancy symptoms, litter problems, fights, behavioral problems, rabbit-house worries, sickness, fleas, predators and etc.
Nevertheless, these challenges can be overcome when the owners have the knowledge and experience to deal with them. Thus, one of the recommended ways to acquire the important knowledge is to read widely and exchange practical information with experienced rabbit owners.
It is important to watch out for any abnormalities in your rabbits as rabbits are susceptible to various digestive ailments and other life-threatening diseases. For example, rabbits are vulnerable to myxomatosis and VHD viruses. These are the killer viruses.
Some popular breeds for pet rabbits include:
- American Fuzzy Lop
- American Sable
- Belgian Hare
- Champagne D’Argent
- Checkered Giant
- Dwarf Hotot
- English Lop
- Flemish Giant
- Florida White
- Jersey Wooly
- Holland Lop
- Mini Lop
- Mini Rex
- Netherland Dwarf
- New Zealand
- Silver Fox
- Silver Marten
If you’re interested in the addition of a pet rabbit, be sure to do your homework to determine if a cute little bunny is the right pet for you and your family! Rabbit Haven has a nice list of things to consider before you start looking for your pet bunny.