Thursday, February 25, 2016


1) Which sex of rabbits make a better pet?
Some claim bucks (males) make better pets. I have had affectionate bucks and does.
In general, I would say that Holland Lop males tend to be more affectionate. However, males can be aggressive and spray, so keep that in mind. Female rabbits, it has been said, are more prone to digging. The personalities of rabbits vary widely and a lot depends on how much attention the rabbits gets by its owner.

2) Do rabbits bond with you?
I've found that the more a rabbit is held or treated with kindness, the more it bonds with a person. I have certain rabbits that seem genuinely thrilled to see me and find they are quite affectionate. Being licked by a rabbit is a high compliment!

3) How long do they live?
Generally, it is accepted that rabbits live about 5-7 years but Holland Lops can live longer than that. Cricket, my oldest doe, just died earlier in 2018 at ten years of age.

4) How big of a cage does a rabbit need?
Generally, the rule of thumb is at least 1 square foot per pound of rabbit. However, I try to let my rabbits hop around in an outdoor rabbit run or inside. Also, stimulating them with regular food, treats, petting, things to chew on, a hide-away box, etc. seem to make them happier and makes it easier to bond with a pet rabbit. I prefer a wire bottomed cage to facilitate cleaning but a piece of carpet or a plastic foot rest can also be used for the rabbit's comfort.

5) Can a rabbit be litter box trained?
I am told by many customers and contacts that they have litter-box trained a pet rabbit. Personally, I have successfully litter box trained one of my bucks over a winter. 

6) Do rabbits get along with other pets?
I have found that cats and rabbits range from getting along well to tolerating each other. Dogs require more caution, especially for dogs bred to hunt rabbits, but I have been told by prior customers that sometimes they can get along with each other.

7) What else do I need to get?
Please check out the checklist on that topic on this site.

8) Can rabbits be kept in a cage together?
I have kept does from the same litter together up to about 4 months old and they have done fine. It may be possible that they could bond even into adulthood but it's not guaranteed. Even females can show dominance or mount each other. Two intact bucks (males) are not recommended since they fight, as early as three to six months of age. Mature, unaltered males and females will mate of course. It is worth noting that unaltered male and female rabbits can mate as early as 12 weeks of age but it's not healthy for the doe. An intact doe and a neutered male may be Ok together or two altered rabbits can bond, as well. It is best to introduce strange rabbits on a neutral location like a completely new cage, a room or rabbit run. Finally, overall it is best to keep a rabbit in its own separate cage but cages can be kept close together.

9) Do you deliver or ship a rabbit?
Sorry, I don't deliver in the general Billings, MT area or ship to other cities. I may be willing to transport a rabbit to a show and meet the customer there.

10) What does it cost to care for a rabbit monthly?
I would estimate, after the rabbit, cage, and cage supplies have been purchased, the typical monthly cost to care for a rabbit would be only about $2-$4/month, depending on feed purchased, treats, etc.. This cost would be on the high end if the rabbit is fed a lot of treats or fruit like bananas or apples. In addition to that, rabbits need to be fed and watered daily and checked periodically for diseases/ hygiene.

11) What rabbit breed makes the best pet?
There are pros and cons. Being a Holland Lop breeder, I am prejudiced. The reason Holland Lops are among the most popular rabbit breeds in the USA id due to their small size (3-4 pounds is the breed standard weight), which means children can handle them easily. Other reasons are that they eat less than large breeds, they have an interesting/ curious personality (a good balance between calm and excitable), the wide variety of colors that they can be found from black to tri-colored and from Tort to orange, and finally they don't require much, if any, grooming.

12) When do the ears of a Holland Lop lop down?
This can happen as early as three weeks. Often Holland Lop kits (bunnies) will have "airplane" ears that stick straight out. This is almost always a transitional phase. Sometimes the lopping process may take until the rabbit is six months or even older. I have one adult doe with ears that are still lopping down. Wide-crowned rabbits will lop sooner. I had a rabbit judge tell me that he has duct-taped a nickel to a lop rabbit to speed up the process.