Looking for a big, beautiful bunny that is large enough for your kids to play with safely?
Consider getting a Giant Chinchilla rabbit.
These gentle giants are the largest of three breeds in the Chinchilla family and were developed in the United States.
These extra-large rabbits often weigh as much as 16 pounds (7.8 kilograms). They are large enough that young children aren’t likely to injure them if they slip out of their hands, and they aren’t intimidated by cats and small-to-medium dogs.
Giant Chinchilla rabbits confidently explore their habitat. They are curious. They love to play.
They are intelligent enough that you can train them to come when they are called. And their gray and blue-toned double coats make them beautiful just to watch.
There is a common misconception we need to clear up before we go any further.
Giant Chinchilla rabbits are not actually chinchillas, the South American fur animal.
Chinchillas are rodents, and rabbits are lagomorphs. Rodents chew on the sides of their mouths, while rabbits chomp down on their food with their front teeth.
Rabbits and rodents are also susceptible to different diseases.
If you are farming rabbits for meat and fur, Giant Chinchillas are a feed-efficient and profitable rabbit.
But if you are looking for a pet that is easy to care for and fun to have around, look no further than the Giant Chinchilla.
Now, let’s take a look at some essential facts about Giant Chinchilla rabbits.
Essential Facts About Giant Chinchilla Rabbits
Scientific name: Oryctolagus cuniculus domesticus
Temperament: Gentle, intelligent, playful, curious.
Color: Dark gray undercoat, dark bluish gray topcoat, light gray between them.
Lifespan: 5 to 8 years, but sometimes up to 10 years with proper care.
Maximum size: Bucks eventually reach a weight of 12 to 16 pounds (5.4 to 7.2 kilograms). Adults weigh 13 to 16 pounds (5.8 to 7.2 kilograms).
Dietary requirements: Since these rabbits have more problems with their teeth than other breeds, it is important to give them a constant supply of dry hay and crunchy vegetables.
Compatible breeds: Gets along with other large rabbits, such as the Silver Fox, Chequered Giant (Giant Papillon), British Giant, Flemish Giant, Hungarian Giant, Spanish Giant, Blanc de Bouscat, French Lop, English Lop. It is important not to breed a Giant Chinchilla male(or a male of any other large breed) to a small female since the doe may not be able to carry or nurse her kits.
Cage size: Like most other rabbits, Giant Chinchillas need cages about 4 times as large as their bodies. Larger is always better. A Giant Chinchilla rabbit needs a cage or kennel with 24 inches by 36 inches (609 cm by 90 cm) floor space, and 14 inches (35 cm) clearance of its head. An outdoor hutch with an enclosed playspace is ideal.
Large enough not to have a problem with other pets. Not a good choice for an indoor rabbit.
History of the Giant Chinchilla Rabbit
French rabbit breeder M. J. Dybowski started breeding Chinchilla rabbits in the early 1900s.
He first entered a Chinchilla rabbit in a show in Saint-Maur in France in 1913.
The breed immediately became popular in Europe as a substitute for chinchilla fur.
American rabbit breeders, however, wanted a rabbit with a chinchilla-like coat that was also large enough for meat production.
Edward Stahl of Holmes Park, Missouri, set his sights on developing a Giant Chinchilla rabbit.
Working in his basement, he experimented with crosses of Chinchilla rabbits with New Zeland Whites, White Flemish rabbits, and American Blues.
On Christmas Day, 1912, one of his does gave birth to a kit with what Stahl considered the “perfect” fur. It also grew to the “perfect” size.
Giant Chinchilla rabbits were popular until the 1940s.
Once the production of meat rabbits became more profitable on mechanized, larger farms, farmers started raising mostly white rabbits for meat production. Giant Chinchilla rabbits became almost unknown on rabbit farms.
In the twenty-first century, Giant Chinchillas are now mostly kept as pets.
Throughout its history, the Giant Chinchilla Rabbit has had various names. One of the names it became known by was the Heavyweight Chinchilla, emphasizing its large size. Another notable name was the Million Dollar Princess, highlighting the breed’s value and potential profitability.
They are so rare that the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy has labeled them as”critically endangered.”
Appearance of the Giant Chinchilla Rabbit
Giant Chinchillas are large, muscular, substantial rabbits. It has a long body with a wide, straight back.
They have rounded haunches and powerful legs. A Giant Chinchilla’s head is wide, and its cheeks are full, not sunken. It has large, erect ears.
Coat and Color
Giant Chinchillas have exceptionally dense, soft, and silky medium-length hair.
They have agouti coloring; that is, their hairs have different colors along the shaft.
The undercolor, the color of the hair next to the skin, is a dark slate blue. The middle of the hair shaft is pearl. The tips of each hair are gray.
Black guard hairs (ticking) are distributed all over the body, although they are not distributed evenly.
Their eye circles, neck, belly, and flanks have pale pearl ticking, while the ticking on the ears is black.
Giant Chinchilla Rabbits have medium-length ears, which stand straight and erect on top of their heads.
This feature gives them an alert and attentive appearance as they constantly listen to their surroundings.
You’ll notice that Giant Chinchilla Rabbits have large, expressive eyes.
These eyes not only add charm to their appearance but also provide them with a keen sense of vision, essential for their survival in the wild and as domestic pets.
Temperament of the Giant Chinchilla Rabbit
In your home or in a hutch, a Giant Chinchilla is a calm, confident, laid-back rabbit. They are not aggressive with other rabbits.
They enjoy the company of their humans. Giant Chinchilla rabbits make great pets for children, seniors, and first-time rabbit owners.
You can easily train your Giant Chinchilla rabbit to use a litter box.
If it is spending most of its time indoors, you can also train your Giant Chinchilla rabbit to roll a cardboard cylinder to you or to come when you call its name.
You will get more enjoyment from your Giant Chinchilla rabbit if you introduce it to physical contact as soon as possible.
If you buy your Giant Chinchilla from a breeder, the breeder will have already started this process.
The more time you spend with your rabbit, and the greater the variety of people who have good experiences with your rabbit, the calmer and friendlier it will be for the rest of its life.
Let’s break down some of their main personality traits and behaviors:
- Docile nature: Giant Chinchillas are often described as having a sweet nature and even temper. This makes them a wonderful choice for pet owners of all ages, from singles to seniors. These rabbits are submissive when handled and are generally considered well-behaved.
- Temperament: They are a gentle and loving breed, known for their loveable lay-about reputation. If you socialize your rabbit gently from a young age, they will grow up to enjoy being handled and receiving affection.
- Exercise needs: Unlike some more energetic rabbit breeds, Giant Chinchillas don’t require extensive amounts of exercise. They’re content with a comfortable space to lounge around and are perfect for owners who don’t have a large amount of time dedicated to their pet’s daily activities.
- Behavior with other pets: Although they’re known for their easy-going nature, you should still take the proper precautions if you have other pets like cats. As with any animal, individual personalities can vary, so it’s essential to slowly and carefully introduce your Giant Chinchilla to other animals in the household.
Care of the Giant Chinchilla Rabbit
One of the biggest challenges in raising Giant Chinchilla rabbits in most of the United States is summer heat stress.
If you have a pet rabbit you keep indoors, and you have air conditioning, this is not a problem.
But if you do not give your outdoor rabbits relief from the heat, they will not eat.
This can cause severe health problems for your rabbit in as little as 24 hours.
But if you do not give your outdoor rabbits relief from the heat, they will not eat. This can cause severe health problems for your rabbit in as little as 24 hours.
When you keep your rabbits outdoors in a hutch, the easiest way to keep them cool is to refrigerate or freeze bottles of water (the bigger, the better) that you place in the cage with your rabbits and to make sure your Giant Chinchillas always have plenty of fresh water.
It also helps to mount an electric fan activated by a thermostat in the wall of the hutch. You will need to cover it in the winter to prevent chilly drafts.
The ideal home for a Giant Chinchilla is a well-ventilated (and, if necessary, heated) hutch with some protected space for grazing and play.
It is possible to keep Giant Chinchilla rabbits as indoor pets, but you will need to make sure they have about a 10 x 10 foot (10 square meters) play space.
Make sure there are no electrical cords they can reach and no furniture they can chew on.
A cage or hutch should provide your rabbit with about four times as much space as its body occupies.
Whether you keep your rabbit indoors or outdoors, it is always a good idea to make sure it is crate trained.
It needs to be comfortable staying inside a crate in which you can carry it when you move or when you need to take your rabbit to the vet.
It is not hard to potty train your rabbit once you understand the peculiarities of rabbit digestive habits. Like cows and horses, rabbits “eat” their food twice.
It goes through one round of digestion to remove carbohydrates and then a round of fermentation to release fatty acids and protein.
Unlike a cow that chews its cud, a rabbit poops out soft pellets and then eats them for a second round of digestion.
If you scoop up soft poop and throw it away, your rabbit can become malnourished,’
Fortunately, rabbits are perfectly happy eating the soft pellets from their litter box. Line a box with dry hay and place their soft pellets inside for a few days.
They will quickly get the idea that they need to poop in their box. It is OK to discard the hard pellets that they have digested twice.
Walking Your Rabbit
You can walk a rabbit on a leash the same way you can walk a dog on a leash.
Just be sure that you do not take your rabbit over hot pavement or sidewalks.
Diet and Nutrition
A Giant Chinchilla Rabbit’s diet consists primarily of hay, pellets, leafy greens, and occasionally fruits and vegetables.
It’s essential for you to understand the different components of their diet to provide the best care possible.
Hay should make up around 70% of your Giant Chinchilla Rabbit’s diet. The most common type of hay for rabbits is Timothy hay.
Hay not only provides necessary fiber but also helps keep their teeth healthy and ground down.
Always ensure your rabbit has access to fresh hay at all times.
High-quality rabbit pellets should be included in your rabbit’s diet, making up about 30% of their daily food intake.
A good guideline is to feed your Giant Chinchilla Rabbit ¼ cup of high-fiber pellets for every 5 pounds of body weight.
For example, if your rabbit weighs 10 pounds, they should consume ½ cup of pellets daily to ensure they receive the proper nutrients.
Leafy greens are a vital component of your rabbit’s diet.
You should introduce a variety of leafy greens, such as kale, spinach, and collard greens, to ensure they receive a balanced mix of vitamins and minerals.
Introduce new leafy greens slowly and watch for any signs of adverse reactions.
Fruits and Vegetables
In addition to hay, pellets, and leafy greens, providing small amounts of fruits and vegetables can add variety to your rabbit’s diet.
Be cautious with fruits, as sugar content can be high. Examples of safe fruits and veggies include apples (without seeds), carrots, and bell peppers.
Always research rabbit-friendly fruits and vegetables before adding them to their diet.
By maintaining a balanced diet consisting of hay, pellets, leafy greens, fruits, and vegetables, you’ll ensure your Giant Chinchilla Rabbit remains healthy and happy.
Popular Bunny Names for Giant Chinchilla Rabbit
Here’s a table with popular Giant Chinchilla Rabbit names, reflecting their breed characteristics.
The Giant Chinchilla Rabbit is known for its large size, chinchilla-like grey-blue fur, and calm disposition.
Many of these names are inspired by their unique appearance and gentle nature.
|Boy Bunny Names for Giant Chinchilla Rabbit||Girl Bunny Names for Giant Chinchilla Rabbitbbit|
These names emphasize the distinctive chinchilla-like fur, large size, and gentle personality of the Giant Chinchilla Rabbit breed, making them fitting choices for your rabbit.
Also read: Names for Pet Rabbits
Frequently Asked Questions About Giant Chinchilla Rabbits
How much will a Giant Chinchilla rabbit cost?
Giant Chinchilla rabbits you buy from a breeder will cost US $50 to $100, more for a show-quality rabbit.
Where can I buy a Giant Chinchilla rabbit?
A good place to start your search for a Giant Chinchilla is the Rabbit Breeders Directory.
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