Do you want to own the star at the next rabbit show?
Get a Standard Chinchilla rabbit! Just about all serious rabbit fans know about the Standard Chinchilla rabbit, but very few actually own one.
Standard Chinchillas are the original Chinchilla rabbit. They get their name from the fact that their fur is almost identically colored with the fur of the famous South American rodent, the chinchilla.
Standard Chinchilla rabbits aren’t rodents. They are rabbits. And they originated in France, not in the Andes.
Unlike the fussy, sugar-addicted rodents with the same name. Standard Chinchilla rabbits make affectionate, loyal, intelligent pets. In this article, we will tell you everything you need to know about keeping them happy and healthy.
Essential Facts About the Standard Chinchilla Rabbit
Color: Earth tones (brown, gray, and chestnut) mixed with bands of black, blue, and white. Distinguished from other Chinchilla rabbit breeds by white circles around dark brown eyes.
Ears: Erect, up to 5 inches (13 cm) long.
Weight: 5 to 7 pounds (2.3 to 3.2 kilograms).
Body shape: Compact.
Lifespan: 5 to 8 years.
Temperament: Friendly, curious, intelligent.
Litter size: 1 or 2 kits. Fewer than most other breeds.
Diet: Mostly dry, fresh, clean timothy hay. Rabbits need a volume of hay approximately the same size as their bodies every day. Enjoys willow sticks and hay balls as chew toys. Be sure your Standard Chinchilla always has fresh, clean, filtered water.
Housing: Crate or hutch with 3 feet by 4 feet (100 cm by 130 cm) floor space for each rabbit, with overhead clearance of at least 14 inches (35 cm) so ears do not brush the top of the cage. Also needs a protected playspace, which can be a rabbit tunnel at least 10 feet (3 meters) long or a fenced play space of at least 100 square feet (10 square meters).
Special care needs: Your rabbit needs to be brushed 2 or 3 times a week (daily during its spring and fall shedding seasons) to prevent the swallowing of hair and a condition called woolblock, described below.
A great pet rabbit for seniors, singles, families, and kids. Makes a good house rabbit.
History of the Standard Chinchilla Rabbit
The chinchilla, that is, the South American rodent, lives in herds at elevations of up to 14,000 feet (4720 meters) in the Andes Mountains of Bolivia, Chile, and Peru.
It has the densest coat of any land mammal, up to 20,000 hairs per square inch (about 3,000 hairs per square centimeter). As many as 50 hairs grow from each follicle.
Chinchilla fur is beautiful, and the South American rodent was hunted to extinction in Bolivia, and in 2000, there was only a single native chinchilla to be found in Peru.
The Chilean government banned hunting chinchillas in 1910, but by that time, chinchilla coats had become enormously popular in Europe.
Unnamed rabbit breeders in France and the United Kingdom set about creating a new breed of rabbit with fur that at least looked like chinchilla fur.
Probably a blue female and an agouti male were crossed to breed rabbits that could then be crossed with Himalayan rabbits and a British breed called Black and Tan.
The result was a new rabbit with chinchilla-like fur that appeared in the British fur market around 1913.
Standard Chinchilla rabbits quickly became enormously popular for fur production.
Thousands of Standard Chinchilla rabbits were registered with the American Rabbit Breeders Association in the 1920s. Suddenly, every rabbit breeder had to be raising Standard Chinchillas.
By 1919, rabbit breeder M. J. Dybowski introduced an American or Heavyweight Chinchilla rabbit that was 50 percent bigger and did not need regular grooming.
There is also a Giant Chinchilla rabbit that can weigh up to 16 pounds (5 kilograms), created by crossing a Standard Chinchilla with a Flemish Giant. It is primarily a meat rabbit.
Rabbits are no longer popular for meat or fur, so the Standard Chinchilla rabbit has once again become a popular breed—that can be a little hard to find.
They make wonderful pets, and, if you can find one, great show animals for children in 4-H.
Appearance of the Standard Chinchilla Rabbit
All of the Chinchilla rabbits are immediately recognizable by their luxurious, beautifully colored fur.
Size and Weight
The Standard Chinchilla Rabbit is a medium-sized breed, with adults typically weighing between 5 and 7 pounds.
This makes them suitable for a variety of living situations, as they are not too large and are relatively easy to care for.
It’s important to note that their weight may slightly vary depending on factors like age, diet, and exercise.
Unique Coat Color
One of the most distinctive features of the Standard Chinchilla Rabbit is their gorgeous coat color.
Unlike its name suggests, this breed does not have a coat that resembles a chinchilla’s fur. Instead, they have a unique coat color that is a blend of black, white, and blue-gray, giving them a beautiful, shimmery appearance.
The soft, short-to-medium-length fur of the Chinchilla Rabbit adds to the attractiveness of this breed, making them a popular choice among rabbit enthusiasts.
Compact Body Type
The Standard Chinchilla Rabbit has a compact and plump body type, with erect ears that should not exceed five inches in length.
This body structure allows them to be adaptable, making them ideal for various living environments.
Ensuring a healthy exercise regimen and a nutritious diet will contribute to maintaining their ideal body shape.
Colors and Variations of Standard Chinchilla Rabbits
When it comes to Standard Chinchilla Rabbits, you’ll find that their fur color is quite unique and beautiful.
This breed is known for its rich blend of earthen colors like brown, chestnut, and tan, mixed in bands with white, blue, and black. One distinguishable feature of the Standard Chinchilla is the pearly eye bands, forming white circles around its dark eyes.
Though the common fur color pattern is a mix of these shades, there are some variations you might come across:
- Blue: Some Standard Chinchilla Rabbits have a more dominant blue hue mixed with other colors. This blue is often a dark slate blue color at the base or a darker blue at the top edge of the fur.
- White: You might notice a few white hairs on the topside of the tail, while the underside of the tail will appear completely white. White also plays a role in the light pearl-colored eye circles.
- Black: Black shades can be seen as part of the color bands in the fur, blending with other colors such as brown and chestnut.
Among the Chinchilla rabbit breeds, there are four variations mainly distinguished by size:
This article focuses on the Standard Chinchilla rabbit, which is known for its beautiful fur type and color.
When selecting a Standard Chinchilla Rabbit, it’s important to appreciate the natural variety in fur colors and patterns that make this breed so attractive.
Temperament of the Standard Chinchilla Rabbit
All of the Chinchilla rabbits have a reputation for being easy to handle but hard to get upset.
They tolerate being picked up, although they may kick and try to get away if you hold them too tight.
The secret of success in raising a Standard Chinchilla rabbit as a pet is to give it lots of positive interactions with all kinds of people every day, starting as soon as it has been weaned.
Protect your rabbit from scary encounters with other pets, and it will reward you with affection and devotion.
Taking Care of Your Standard Chinchilla Rabbit
Good diet is essential for keeping your Standard Chinchilla rabbit healthy. They need naturally high-fiber foods to keep their digestive tracts moving and to keep their teeth worn down.
The primary high-fiber food for every rabbit is hay.
Give your Standard Chinchilla rabbit timothy hay, not alfalfa hay or alfalfa cubes. Alfalfa is too high in calcium for rabbits. It can cause kidney stones in adult Standard Chinchilla rabbits.
Despite their portrayal in Bugs Bunny cartoons, rabbits don’t really live on carrots.
It is OK to give your rabbit a carrot stick as a special treat or as a reward for using the litter box or coming when you call its name.
Most of the time, give your rabbit mostly hay with up to a cup (50 to 100 grams) of carrot tops, radish tops, kale, Romaine lettuce, or cabbage, plus a few berries. The only kind of pellets your rabbit should eat are high-fiber hay pellets, such as those made by Mazuri or Oxbow.
An ideal setup for a medium-sized rabbit, like a Standard Chinchilla, is a two-story hutch with a litter box underneath, attached to a rabbit tunnel in which you have placed a hay house and chew toys.
Give your rabbit a safe place for resting, napping, and sleep, but don’t overlook giving it a safe place to play.
Rabbits should get outside of their crates or hutches 3 hours a day.
Grooming your Standard Chinchilla Rabbit is straightforward and doesn’t require too much effort.
Their short-to-medium-length fur usually stays in good condition without needing excessive attention. However, there are a few important grooming tips you should keep in mind:
- Brush your rabbit’s coat at least twice a week to prevent matting and to keep their fur looking its best.
- During shedding season, which typically occurs in the springtime, you may need to brush them more often to keep shedding under control.
- If your rabbit’s fur becomes stained, avoid giving them a bath. Instead, gently spot-clean the stained area with a damp cloth.
In addition to their fur, Standard Chinchilla Rabbits may also have eye circles – darker rings of fur around their eyes. This is a natural part of their appearance and does not require any specific grooming.
When grooming your rabbit, always be gentle and patient. They may be nervous or unsure of the process at first, but with consistency and a calm demeanor, they will eventually become more comfortable.
Health Concerns of Standard Chinchilla Rabbits
As we mentioned earlier, the primary health problem of Standard Chinchilla rabbits is a condition called gastrointestinal stasis or woolblock.
Rabbits instinctively lick themselves to reduce their scent, so predators will not notice them.
Every time a rabbit licks itself, it swallows hair.
Rabbits are like cats in that they can get hairballs. Rabbits are unlike cats in that they can’t cough up hairballs.
Hair can accumulate into a mass called a bezoar that gets stuck in its pyloric valve, the connection between the bottom of its stomach and the top of its gut.
Food can get trapped in the stomach.
Lumps may appear on the rabbit’s belly. Dehydration and starvation can follow in 48 hours.
Prevent this common rabbit health problem with a high-fiber diet to keep your rabbit regular.
The high fiber also wears down your rabbit’s constantly growing teeth and prevents teeth from growing into the face.
Other than providing a high-fiber diet, the other thing you can do to protect your rabbit’s health is to prevent the spread of parasites and infection by blocking contact of your pet rabbit with wild rabbits and other pets.
Consider insuring your pet rabbit with Nationwide, the only veterinary health insurance company that insures rabbits in the USA.
Are Standard Chinchilla Rabbits Good Pets?
Standard Chinchilla Rabbits are well-loved pets for various reasons. Their size makes them easy to handle, as they typically weigh between 5.5 to 6.5 pounds.
Not only are they manageable, but they are also sociable animals that enjoy interaction with their owners.
If you’re considering a pet rabbit, here’s what you can expect from a Standard Chinchilla.
Before bringing one home, it’s essential to know that rabbits, such as the Standard Chinchilla, need a proper living space.
You’ll want to provide a roomy cage with plenty of space to move around and play. Make sure to supply fresh hay, food pellets, and water to keep your pet happy and healthy.
The Standard Chinchilla Rabbit has a few traits that make them great pets:
- They are friendly and enjoy human company.
- Their gentle nature makes them suitable pets for children and adults alike.
- They have a unique silver coat color that many people find appealing.
In terms of pet compatibility, these rabbits are generally good with other pets, especially if the other pet is small enough.
However, always introduce your new rabbit to other pets cautiously and be mindful of your rabbit’s safety around larger animals.
When it comes to mothering instincts, female Standard Chinchilla Rabbits are known to be attentive mothers.
They will actively care for their young, ensuring they are clean, well-fed, and safe. Nevertheless, it is crucial to provide a safe and comfortable nesting area for the mother to care for her offspring properly.
Finally, maintaining a healthy Standard Chinchilla Rabbit means keeping them on a nutritious diet, providing regular exercise, and some attention to grooming.
Popular Bunny Names for Standard Chinchilla Rabbits
Here’s a table with popular Standard Chinchilla Rabbit names, reflecting their breed characteristics.
The Standard Chinchilla Rabbit is known for its grey fur that resembles a chinchilla’s and its gentle temperament.
Many of these names are inspired by their unique appearance and calm nature.
|Boy Bunny Names for Standard Chinchilla Rabbits
|Girl Bunny Names for Standard Chinchilla Rabbits
These names emphasize the grey fur and gentle temperament of the Standard Chinchilla Rabbit breed, making them fitting choices for your rabbit.
Also read: Popular Bunny Names (Girl/Boy)
Frequently Asked Questions About Standard Chinchilla Rabbits
Where can I find Standard Chinchilla rabbits for sale?
How much will I pay for a Standard Chinchilla rabbit?
A. Most breeders will charge between US $100 and $150.
Do Standard Chinchilla rabbits enjoy being held?
Standard Chinchilla rabbits enjoy being petted by people they know but they do not enjoy being picked up unless they know you very well. They may kick against you with their hind legs.
If you restrain them, they may fracture their spines as they try to escape.
Which is larger, a Standard Chinchilla rabbit or a Giant Chinchilla rabbit?
Standard Chinchilla rabbits may weigh as little as 5 pounds (2.3 kilograms) to as much as 13 pounds (5.9 kilograms) when they are fully grown. (You may be told at a rabbit show following American Rabbit Breeders Association standards that you cannot enter a Standard Chinchilla that weighs more than 7.5 pounds, or 3.4 kilograms.)
A Giant Chinchilla rabbit will weigh between 12 and 16 pounds (5.5 to 7.5 kilograms) when it is mature. A very large Standard Chinchilla rabbit is about the same size as the smallest Giant Chinchilla rabbit.
American Chinchilla rabbits typically weigh from 9 to 12 pounds (4.1 to 6.3 kilograms), in between the other two Chinchilla rabbit breeds.
What distinguishes Standard Chinchilla Rabbits from American Chinchilla Rabbits?
While both Standard Chinchilla and American Chinchilla Rabbits share a similar appearance, they differ in size and origin.
The American Chinchilla, classified as a heavyweight rabbit, is slightly larger than the Standard Chinchilla.
Additionally, the American Chinchilla Rabbit has rollback fur, which means it rolls back into place after being stroked.
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