10 Smallest Animals That Can Kill You Interesting Facts Do Dwarf Rabbit Breeds Need Special Care?

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Do Dwarf Rabbit Breeds Need Special Care?

When it comes to breeds of rabbits, there is a huge selection from cute Mini Lops to giant Flemish giants. But more and more people are choosing to open their hearts and homes to a dwarf rabbit. In fact the Netherland dwarf is one of, if not the, most popular breed in the world today.

Many people refer to their little rabbits as dwarfs and you will often see people saying they have a ‘Dwarf Lop’ or ‘Dwarf Lionhead’. However, to be an official ‘dwarf’ breed, a rabbit must carry half of the dwarf gene. The American Rabbit Breeders Association recognizes only two true dwarf breeds – the Hotot Dwarf (around 3lb) and the Netherland Dwarf (around 2.5lb).

But regardless of whether your bun is an official dwarf or just a very small version of another breed, the question is often asked if caring for a dwarf bun is different from other breeds.

So, do rabbit breeds need special care?

The answer to this is not really. There are a couple of things you need to keep in mind with dwarf breeds but in general their care is the same as other rabbits.

Here are a few things you need to watch out for:

  • Dwarf rabbits can often be more energetic and harder to handle than larger breeds. And, while there are always exceptions to the rule, in general they require *more* space and practice than a large rabbit does.
  • Because of their apparent small size, dwarf rabbits seem like prey to cats and dogs, especially to dogs as slaves that are trained to hunt and kill mice, rats and even rabbits. It may be best to consider choosing a larger rabbit if you have a dog or cat in the home.
  • While not a proven scientific fact, many dwarf owners feel that their dwarf bunnies have a more delicate digestive system. While that may or may not be the case with your dwarf bun, you still need to be very careful about how much food you feed your bunny. Dwarfs are small creatures (2-3lbs) and can become overweight very quickly. A part of the food ‘care’ for example: an apple for a dwarf bun will be around a teaspoon!
  • If your cage has a wire bottom, take care to make sure your dwarf leaf’s legs are not so small that they can slip through the wire. Change the wire to a smaller hole or put something sturdy over it instead such as newspaper or cardboard. As with any rabbit, wire cages require a portion of the floor to be covered with a sturdy material so that the bunnies can rest their feet.
  • Netherland Dwarfs are more susceptible to dental problems due to their small, compact head shape and short jaw. This can mean a visit to the vet each month to have his teeth trimmed which can become expensive.

There is no doubt that dwarf rabbits and especially the Netherland Dwarf, are very beautiful. However, as with any rabbit, they are not a low maintenance pet and it is a 10-12 year commitment to keep one.

Make sure you are ready to add a dwarf bun to your home before you fall in love with the cute little face and take it home.

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