The Netherland Dwarf is one of the most popular breeds of domestic rabbits, and it is also the smallest of all rabbit breeds. The Netherland Dwarf originated in – get this – the Netherlands. A tiny Polish rabbit crossed with a wild rabbit, sometime prior to 1940; in 1948, British rabbit fanciers brought them to Great Britain, and in the 1960’s the Netherland Dwarf was brought to the United States .
Netherland Dwarf rabbits are tiny, weighing two to two and a half pounds, and have heads and eyes that are disproportionately large compared to the rest of their bodies. Their ears are tiny, their necks are short, and their faces rounded and shortened (slightly flat); all these features together cause them to look babyish even as an adult (this is part of their charm).
A Netherland dwarf has possibly the most color varieties of all the breeds – a total of 32 colors!
The early dwarfs had irritable, high-strung temperaments, probably as a result of early in-breeding for small size, and they were really not such good pets. However, subsequent generations were bred selectively to produce gentle, friendly – yet still very energetic – pet rabbits.
Due to their small size, Netherland Dwarfs are an especially poor choice for a children’s pet as they are so easily dropped, stepped on or otherwise injured.
Other dwarf breeds, such as the Mini-Rex and the Mini-Lop, are the results of crossing larger breeds with the Netherland Dwarf, producing a rabbit with the characteristics of the larger rabbit and the smaller size of the dwarf (plush fur, in the case of the Mini-Rex).
Netherland Dwarfs have especially endearing features and are lively, inquisitive bunnies, but their small size and higher-strung personality make them better suited as pets for adult households.
Emily (pictured) is a adult, small-sized, seal and white Netherland Dwarf with good litterbox habits who is looking for a home with an experienced bunny caregiver. Additionally, Emily has been altered and is currently bonded to another bunny.
We’re not sure how she would do with children or pets. We’ve learned that Emily tolerates being picked up and held and she tolerates sitting on laps.
Emily became a Dayton Area Rabbit Network shelter bunny on August 23, 2010 and is currently located in/at Foster Care.
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