How Many Rabbit Breeds Are There?

Rabbits belong to the Leporidae family and are found in quite a wide variety.

Whether you’re considering wild rabbits or even domesticated ones, you’ll be surprised at the number of different breeds out there.

The American Rabbit Breeds Association (ARBA) declares there to be 49 different rabbit breeds. These include wild and domesticated rabbits that are found across the globe.

It truly is astonishing to see just how different each of these breeds is. Moreover, every rabbit breed has its unique characteristics and appearance to match.

Today, let’s discover how many rabbit breeds are out there and differentiate between wild and pet bunnies!

How Many Rabbit Breeds Are There in Total?

Different rabbit breeds are found all across the world, residing in different countries and environments. You can find varying rabbit breeds all across the globe!

The only part of the world where rabbits aren’t found in Antarctica.

The most astonishing thing about rabbits is the variety of breeds you can find. There are over 29 varying species of rabbits found in 10 different genera across the world’s continents.

Among these breeds, there are 17 species of cottontails that are found native to North and South America alone. These are some of the best-known breeds of rabbits.

Additionally, the American Rabbit Breeds Association (ARBA) declares there to be 49 different rabbit breeds. These include wild and domesticated rabbits that are found across the globe.

Read on to find out the different kinds of wild and pet rabbit breeds. Below, we discuss the way each of these breeds of rabbit varies in appearance, personality, preferred habitat, and temperament.

Which Rabbit Breeds Are Commonly Found in the Wild?

Wild rabbits are ground dwellers. They can be found in a wide variety of environments, ranging from desert regions to damp wetlands and even tropical forests.

This makes rabbits some of the most diverse ‘small animals’ out there.

Some common features of wild rabbits include greyish-brown fur and a smaller size than domesticated rabbits.

The uniquely colored fur helps them camouflage within their environment to stay safe from predators. Similarly, the smaller size makes it easier for them to hide out in burrows and holes.

Wild rabbits also tend to have a shorter life than pet bunnies. It ranges from as short as just one year to over three years in the wild.  Let’s learn more about the most common wild rabbit breeds.

Amami Rabbit

The Amami rabbit is native to Japan and is most commonly found in the islands near Okinawa. This rabbit breed is a descendant of the ancient breeds that used to reside on the Asian mainland.

The Amami rabbit prefers living in the mature forests of Japan. They have small ears as one of their most distinguishing features, paired with a short body and small hind legs.

However, the Amami rabbit breed has a surprisingly bulky body and large claws that curve downwards.

The claws signify how this rabbit breed has adapted to its living conditions. The curved edges help them dig into the forest ground to form their burrows.

Colombian Pygmy Rabbit

The Colombian Pygmy Rabbit is native to Washington State and has become almost extinct.

The low population size of these wild rabbits is due to disease, predators, and habitat loss. There are now active programs in place to repopulate this wild rabbit breed.

These rabbits are small in size, weighing even less than a pound. They grow up to 11 inches and have gray-brown coats. This is a timid and skittish breed that spends most of its time inside burrows.

European Rabbit

The European rabbit is native to southwestern Europe. However, it is found in numerous areas across northwest Africa as well.

The European rabbit is an invasive species of wild rabbits. It has caused quite a few environmental issues and has been around for half a million years now.

These rabbits vary in size and weight based on the habitat they reside in. They are grey-brown in color to help them camouflage but are found in other color variations too.

Sumatran Striped Rabbit

Found specifically in the Barisan Mountains, this Indonesian rabbit breed is as unique as they come.

Unfortunately, due to extreme habitat loss, the Sumatran Striped Rabbit is now considered an endangered breed. They are quite rare, with very little documented about their qualities.

The population size of the Sumatran Striped Rabbit is unknown.

They are a medium-sized rabbit breed, growing up to 1.2 to 1.5 feet in length. They have short, rounded ears and black bodies. Their bodies have brown stripes, and the tail is a stunning red.

The Sumatran Striped Rabbit is a nocturnal rabbit breed. They often live in burrows stolen from other animals by claiming them as their own.

Volcano Rabbit

The Volcano Rabbit is one of the smallest rabbit breeds, only weighing about 1.3 pounds as an adult. They are found in the mountain ranges of Mexico and have a life expectancy of 7 to 9 years.

The Volcano rabbit has a short body with small legs and rounded ears. They have thick, grey fur and live in burrows, only coming up at twilight.

The Volcano Rabbit is another breed that is now considered endangered. This is mostly due to habitat loss and climate change.

Moreover, people are mostly unaware of their protected status. So, they continue to hunt this small rabbit breed, further causing its population to dwindle.

Which Rabbit Breeds Make the Best Pets?

Now that you know about wild rabbits, their features, and more prominent breeds, let’s move on. We will discuss pet rabbits now and how they differ from wild ones.

Firstly, pet rabbits enjoy a longer and safer life than wild rabbits. This is because these prey animals don’t need to worry about being hunted by predators or hiding in burrows to keep themselves safe.

Pet rabbits can live up to 12 years with their human companions.

However, it is important to note that they tend to be more social than wild bunnies. Pet rabbits commonly demand the company of other rabbits to live a healthy and happy life.

They also need to be neutered and spayed early on, as rabbits are quick to procreate.

Lastly, they have very specific grooming needs. This is because pet rabbits are dependent on their human companions to file their teeth and clip their nails for healthy living.

Let’s learn more about the most sought-after pet rabbit breeds now.

Harlequin Rabbit

The Harlequin Rabbit is one of the oldest pet rabbit breeds. They are commonly found in France and were developed in the 1880s. The breed was first recognized in the States back in the 1920s.

These pet rabbit breeds make great pets due to their docile nature. They are also commonly found in animal shows as they are clever animals who learn tricks well.

The calm and affectionate nature of these rabbit breeds makes them ideal pets. This is especially true for people who have children, as these rabbits don’t mind being held and petted.

They have a medium-sized body and short fur. The unique markings on their body make them stand out too!

Havana Rabbit

The Havana Rabbit belonged to the Netherlands and was first found in 1989. Their name is attributed to their unique coloring as it looks like the Havana Cigar.

The Havana Rabbit was first introduced to the United States in 1980. These rabbits also make good pets and show animals. They have a calm personality and love attention from humans.

This is an active rabbit breed that enjoys roaming freely.  You can even keep them in an enclosed yard.

Lionhead Rabbit

The Lionhead Rabbit is one of the most popular rabbit breeds in the United States. It first arrived in America in 1998.

However, it didn’t receive approval as an official breed from the American Rabbit Breeders Association until 2014. This makes the Lionhead Rabbit a rather new breed in America.

The Lionhead Rabbit is a compact breed with a rounded body. It has a wooly mane of fur.

These rabbits are becoming increasingly popular as pets in America. This is a result of their good nature as they are highly tolerant of children.

Lionhead Rabbits are among the friendliest bunnies. They love spending time with their owners and crave attention.

Mini Lop Rabbit

As the name signifies, this is a small rabbit breed with a rounded body. They have adorable, flopping ears and have become a well-loved breed by rabbit enthusiasts.

The Mini Lop Rabbit was initially discovered in Germany. This happened in a German rabbit show in 1972, and soon after, the breed was introduced to America.

Mini Lop Rabbits are highly tolerant of children, making them great pets to keep. They love their owner’s attention and affection.

Moreover, Mini Lop Rabbits are among the few rabbit breeds that don’t mind being picked up. They will happily sleep on your lap. These rabbits are known for the loving and warm cuddles they give!

Rex Rabbit

Lastly, we have the Rex Rabbit, which is known for its luxurious coat. These rabbits have velvety fur that comes in 16 unique colors.

This friendly rabbit breed makes a great family pet as it enjoys being picked and cuddled. They are intelligent and loving pets. You can get them in a standard size or even a miniature Rex Rabbit!

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