Are you looking for a calm, affectionate, easy-to-manage pet rabbit that stands out in a crowd?
Consider getting a Thrianta rabbit.
Thrianta rabbits were developed as a token of loyalty to the royal house of the Netherlands, the House of Orange.
They have solid orange coats that will catch the crowd’s attention at a rabbit show—although if you don’t live in Holland, they can be a little hard to find.
In this article, we will tell you everything you need to know about Thrianta rabbits. We’ll review the essential facts about Thriantas, their history, their appearance and genetics, and how to keep them happy and healthy as pets.
Then we will give you the answers to the most frequently asked questions about this unique breed.
Essential Facts About Thrianta Rabbits
Nickname: The Fire of the Fancy
Color: Orange-red except on the belly, which is fawn (brownish-yellow).
Maximum size: 6 pounds (2.7 kilograms).
Body type: Compact, rounded.
Litter size: 5 to 7, although some does will have as many as 11 babies at a time.
Temperament: Shy, but friendly once it gets to know you.
Diet: Mostly dry, clean timothy (not alfalfa) hay. Up to 1 cup (100 g) of chopped dark leafy greens, carrots, and berries is acceptable. Limit pellets to 10% of diet, and make sure you do not give your rabbit cat or dog food. Fiber is essential to rabbit health.
Special Care Requirements, Compared to Other Rabbits: Fur color may change if the rabbit is stressed by threats from predator animals, crowding, new environment, or disease.
Cage Requirements: Ideal housing is a two-story hutch. Allow 4 square feet (about 0.5 square meter) per rabbit,
History of the Thrianta Rabbit
Thrianta rabbits were discovered in the Swiss Alps by a rabbit enthusiast named John DeFiori.
They were perfected as a breed by a Dutch rabbit breeder named H. Andrea. Mr. Andrea raised these rabbits at his farm in a province called Drenthe, but he gave the breed the older name of the region, Thrianta.
Orange is the color of the royal House of Orange-Nassau in the Netherlands, so there was some fanfare when the rabbits were certified by the Dutch Standard on May 1, 1940.
The breed quickly gained popularity, attracting a dedicated following of breeders who appreciated the bright colors and sought to maintain and spread this unique rabbit breed.
However, Germany invaded the Netherlands just nine days later, and most of the new breed of rabbits were lost during World War II.
Many of the rabbits were used as a meat source and almost wiped out completely.
After World War II, rabbit breeders in Germany kept a small number of Thriantas as breeding stock.
They crossed the Thriantas that had survived with a German breed called Sachjsengold, resulting in rabbits for the current standard, a reddish-orange coat.
The breed arrived in the United Kingdom in the 1980s, and rabbit breederJudith Oldenburg-Graf brought Thriantas to the United States in 1996.
Over the next few years, there were multiple shipments of Thriantas to the United States, building up a healthy gene pool.
The American Rabbit Breeders Association recognized the breed in 2005, and it remains popular in the United States even today, even though Thriantas are not easy to find.
Appearance of the Thrianta Rabbit
The first thing you will notice about a Thrianta rabbit is that most of its coat has the same color fur as an Irish Setter (the dog).
A Thrianta’s fur coat should be a bright reddish-orange, not a dull orange or brown.
There is orange-red fur all over the rabbit’s body except for the underparts and the tail.
The fur is soft, and dense, and rolls back when you pet your rabbit.
The color of the fur should be the same all the way down the hair shaft as it is at the tip. Even the belly should be more orange and red than brown.
Thriantas pose with their head near the ground. They tuck their feet beneath their bodies.
Their legs are relatively short. You won’t see any daylight beneath your Thrianta when it is in a resting position.
The Thrianta’s ears are short, and red all around.
If you are entering your Thrianta rabbit in a show, you want to display your rabbit in profile to the judges, not facing them.
There should be a gradual rise in the body behind the neck, with a slight taper from the hips to the shoulders.
Your rabbit should meet the Standard of Perfection that says the Thrianta should be “plump.” A Thrianta should not have a flat body, or a bulky body. Rounded contours get extra points at the rabbit show.
If you are entering your Thrianta in a 4-H show, you need to follow the special rule that exhibitors should not cover the head or ears of their rabbits when they are showing them.
There are other breeds, such as Florida Whites and New Zealand Whites, that you hold the head down when you are showing them.
Hold your Thrianta rabbit gently at the middle of its body. Remember, the head is the most beautiful part of the Thrianta rabbit’s profile.
Size and Weight
The Thrianta rabbit is a medium-sized breed, making it a great pet for those who are looking for a compact yet strong companion.
When fully grown, these rabbits can weigh anywhere from 4 to 6 pounds.
Thriantas have a rounded, smooth, and plump body shape, with their hindquarters round from all directions.
Their short neck supports a compact head that is both short and full. Their ears are erect, stocky, and thickly furred, which adds to their overall adorable appearance.
Temperament of the Thrianta Rabbit
Thrianta rabbits are friendly, but shy. It is important to give them many opportunities to interact with humans as soon as they are weaned.
This way, they will be more relaxed around people when they are mature.
These rabbits are not compatible with dogs, cats, and other non-caged pets, but they are a good choice for younger children.
Taking Care of Your Thrianta Rabbit
The care needs of Thrianta rabbits change throughout their lives.
Junior rabbits are most at risk to rough handling. Dropping a young rabbit, or holding it too tight, can result in broken bones.
Roughhousing with a rabbit so it twists its hind legs to get away can break its spine. If your rabbit is struggling to get away from you, just let it go. You can always get it back to its cage when it is hungry.
Rabbits of all ages are vulnerable to predators.
Even smaller senior Thrianta rabbits are vulnerable to being hunted by hawks.
A hawk can’t pick up your rabbit and fly away, but it can lift your rabbit and drop him. The fall injures bones so the rabbit cannot escape from the bird.
Rabbits need to be supervised when they are playing on the lawn. You need to keep them from hopping out of the yard, and protect them from cats and dogs.
Rabbits eat grass, but not just any grass. Lawn clippings, for instance, may contain dirt, herbicides, pesticides, and pet feces.
Alfalfa hay, which is great for horses, is too high in calcium and protein for rabbits. (It can injure their kidneys.)
Give your rabbit about the same volume of dry, clean, fresh timothy hay every day as the size of its body.
Supplement the diet with dark green vegetables (not Iceberg lettuce, which is too low in nutritional content), carrot tops and bottoms, radish tops, berries, and fruit.
High-fiber timothy hay pellets are OK for about 10% of your rabbit’s diet.
Your rabbit needs access to its litter box 24/7. Don’t get upset if you line the litter box with hay and your rabbit eats it.
Keep the litter box clean, scooping out hard pellets of feces and urine-soaked hay daily.
Replace the hay and clean out the box with water and vinegar, never detergents or harsh germ killers, at least once a week.
Brush your rabbit’s coat with a stiff comb once a week. You will want to do this outside, if possible.
Rabbits shed for a week in the fall and a week in the spring. You may need to comb your rabbit two or three times a week during shedding season.
Never give your rabbit a bath. Remove debris and feces stuck in their coats with a warm, moist washcloth.
Your rabbit needs a protected area of about 100 square feet where it can roam and play three or four hours a day.
Make sure indoor space is free of electrical cords and furniture that can be damaged by gnawing. Make sure any outdoor rabbit run is predator-proof.
Health Concerns of Thrianta Rabbits
The American Thrianta Rabbit Breeders Association has been warning Thrianta owners of Epizootic Rabbit Enteropathy.
It is a potentially fatal digestive tract infection that can become a problem when too many Thrianta rabbits are placed in the same hutch.
In general, you can keep your pet rabbits from catching infectious diseases by making sure they have no contact with wild rabbits, and they do not wander into the urine or feces of other pets or wild animals.
Otherwise, you can keep your rabbits healthy by giving them a high-fiber diet.
American Thrianta Rabbit Breeders Association (ATRBA)
The American Thrianta Rabbit Breeders Association (ATRBA) is the national specialty club dedicated to the Thrianta rabbit breed.
It plays a vital role in promoting the breed in the United States by:
- Encouraging responsible breeding: ATRBA provides guidelines and support to breeders to ensure they follow ethical practices.
- Preserving the breed’s standard: ATRBA is involved in setting the breed standard, which ensures consistency in the appearance and qualities of the Thrianta rabbits.
- Organizing events and shows: ATRBA hosts rabbit shows where enthusiasts can showcase their rabbits and learn more about the breed.
Joining ATRBA is a great way to connect with other Thrianta rabbit enthusiasts, access valuable resources, and learn from experienced breeders about rabbit care and breeding.
Remember, when breeding Thrianta rabbits, prioritize the health and well-being of the rabbits, and work with reputable breeders and organizations.
By following ethical breeding practices and adhering to recognized standards, you can contribute to the preservation and promotion of this wonderful rabbit breed.
Thrianta as a Pet
Thriantas are beautiful and friendly rabbits that can make lovely pets.
These small to medium-sized rabbits have distinctive orange-red fur and typically weigh between 4 to 6 lbs.
They have a calm demeanor and can be a great addition to your home. Let’s learn more about why Thriantas can be great pets.
Thrianta rabbits are generally good with other pets if they are properly socialized early on.
They can live peacefully with other rabbits, but it’s essential to properly introduce them to avoid any tension or conflict.
With smaller pets, always supervise interactions to make sure they are safe.
First-Time Pet Owners
Thrianta Rabbits are a good option for first-time pet owners because of their friendly and calm nature.
They are relatively low-maintenance, requiring a clean and spacious cage, fresh water, hay, and pellets for a balanced diet.
Remember that these rabbits have stunning and thick coats, so grooming them regularly is essential to avoid matting and keep them looking their best.
Thrianta rabbits can be a good choice for families with children.
These gentle animals generally enjoy human interaction and can be handled carefully by children.
To ensure a positive experience, it’s important to teach your kids the right way to handle a rabbit, supporting their body and not lifting them by their ears.
Remember that rabbits can be sensitive, and loud noises or rough handling might stress them out.
Thus, it is crucial to create a calm environment and always supervise interactions between children and your Thrianta Rabbit.
To sum it up, Thrianta Rabbits can be fantastic pets for pet owners, including first-timers and families with children.
Their friendly, calm demeanor and adaptability make them a wonderful addition to your home. Just make sure to provide them with proper care and socialization to enjoy a lasting bond with your Thrianta Rabbit.
Popular Bunny Names for Thrianta Rabbits
Here’s a table with popular Thrianta Rabbit names, reflecting their breed characteristics.
The Thrianta Rabbit is known for its vibrant red-orange fur and friendly temperament.
Many of these names are inspired by their unique appearance and sociable nature.
Boy Bunny Names for Thrianta Rabbits Girl Bunny Names for Thrianta Rabbits Ember Ginger Flame Ruby Blaze Cherry Rusty Amber Pumpkin Rose Cinnabar Poppy Copper Coral Pippin Blossom Pepper Daisy Red Honey
These names emphasize the vibrant red-orange fur and friendly temperament of the Thrianta Rabbit breed, making them fitting choices for your rabbit.
Also read: Popular Bunny Names (Girl/Boy)
Frequently Asked Questions About Thrianta Rabbits
Where can I buy a Thrianta rabbit?
How much will a Thrianta rabbit cost?
You can buy a Thrianta rabbit for US $50 to $100. The hutch will cost another $100 to $300, and food and toys may cost around $30 a month.
We strongly recommend veterinary health insurance from Nationwide (the only company in the US that offers coverage for rabbits) if you are keeping your Thrianta as a family pet.
If I cross a Thrianta rabbit with another breed, will I get orange baby rabbits?
You definitely will not get a litter of orange kits, although their offspring could be orange.
Orange color coats in rabbits requires two copies of the recessive e gene, one copy of which must be inherited from each parent.
My Thrianta rabbit’s coat color is changing from fiery red to a lighter, ginger color. Why is that?
Rabbits that have gone through stress, such as an encounter with a dog or a move to a new home, often change their coat color to a lighter shade. It is a natural protective reaction.
Were Thrianta rabbits created by genetic engineering?
While scientists have used CRISPR technology to create a rabbit with a pale-yellow coat, Thrianta rabbits are the result of conventional breeding programs in Holland and later in Germany and the UK in the 1930s and then after World War II.