Domestic rabbit

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Domestic rabbit

The Rabbit family belongs to the Lagomorpha order. Up until recently, they were observed in the classification as a separate family of rodents. The systemizers accept that the main difference is the teeth and some other marks which allow them to be separated in an independent order. Lagomorphs have two large incisors on their upper jaw and two smaller ones on the side. Their teeth formula is 2/1; 0/0; 3/2; 3/3. Their lower limbs are longer and have 4 fingers, while the upper limbs have 5 fingers. In this family, our interest is drawn towards the following genera of rabbits: White rabbit, Netherland Dwarf rabbit and Lionhead rabbit.

White rabbit

This rabbit is mainly characterized with a seasonal dimorphism of the color of the fur. During the summer it is light yellow with a rusty shade and during the winter it is white (hence its other name – Snow rabbit), with a black colorization on the top of its years. Its average weight is 5 kgs and its average length is between 45 and 70 cms.


The White rabbit is mainly spread in the tundra and forest tundra in Siberia, Northern Kazakhstan, Finland, the northern parts of Russia and the Alps in Italy, Austria and Bavaria. In Eastern Europe, including Bulgaria, it isn’t spread.

Its nutrition depends on the season. During the summer, it consists of grass, cultivated plants, alfalfa, clover and mushrooms and in the winter dry grass, wide-leaf wood and bushes.

Netherland Dwarf rabbit

At the beginning, the Netherland Dwarf rabbit was a breed more familiar under the name of field rabbit, as it was accidentally discovered after the mixture of field rabbit and a small breed of wild rabbit in 1900 in the Netherlands. The body of the Netherland Dwarf rabbit is small, but well-rounded and proportional. The shoulders are compact and equal in width as the rump and the body. The head is round and the neck – short. The ears are straight and hairy and the eyes are round. The rabbit’s fur is soft, slightly curly. Their average weight is between 900 and 1100 grs. According to the fur’s color, there are several species of Netherland Dwarf rabbits: blue, black, purple and red variations.

The Netherland Dwarf rabbits have a sensitive digestive system and need a well-balanced diet containing fresh and quality food in appropriate quantities. The menu has to be rich in fibers (18 – 20 %) and poor in fats (2 – 3 %), as well as proteins (14 – 15 %). Besides pellets, an appropriate food is oat flakes, herbs and fresh vegetables.

Lionhead rabbit

The birthplace of the breed is Belgium, where the decision to get an offspring from a mixture between a Swedish Fox rabbit and a Netherland Dwarf rabbit was taken. The result was a rabbit with an extensive amount of fur around the head and on the cheeks.

The Lionhead rabbit possesses a mane of longer fur – hence the name of the breed. Its head is placed high and the solid small body doesn’t exceed 1,5 kgs. The ears measure between 5 and 7 cms. According to the mane, the Lionhead rabbits separate in two species. The first has a singular circle of longer fur on the head, ears, chin and breast, while the others have a double mane, far denser and more distinguished.

The color of the rabbits varies: black, chocolate, chestnut, seal, silver, pearl and others. Distinguishable colorings, encountered in every specimen, don’t exist.