5 lop-eared rabbit breeds you'll love
The American Rabbit Breeders Association (ARBA) recognizes fifty different rabbit breeds in an amazing array of shapes and sizes, but only five of these breeds have “lop” ears. This means that instead of having upright ears like most bunnies, these lop-eared rabbit breeds have ears that droop down and frame their faces. Lop-eared rabbits have a delightful charm and it’s easy to see why they are so popular. If you’d like to learn more about some adorable breeds, read on!
I’ve talked about Holland Lop rabbits in these pages before, but that’s because there’s a lot to love about Holland Lops and it bears repeating. (They’re my favorite rabbit breed, after all!)
These adorable dwarf rabbits top the scales at 4 pounds and are one of the most popular breeds in America. Despite their small size, they have big personalities and are super fun to have around.
You’ll love the Holland Lop’s inquisitive disposition and affectionate nature.
They’re wonderful show rabbits and excellent pets, and they’re recognized in an entire rainbow of beautiful colors, too. Bunny Bonus Points: Holland Lops like to purr.
American Fuzzy Lop
The American Fuzzy Lop is the same size as the Holland Lop (up to 4 pounds) and is quite similar in looks as well, for good reason: the American Fuzzy Lop was developed using the Holland Lop as the breed’s foundation.
But even though they share similar characteristics and size, the breeds have one major difference: the Holland Lop has what’s known as “normal” fur, while the American Fuzzy Lop has Angora-like wool, giving its coat a distinctly different texture and appearance. The breed was recognized by the ARBA in the late 1980s.
Rabbits with Angora wool have a lot of appeal, so if you’re looking for a rabbit with Angora wool and also prefer the look of lop ears, the American Fuzzy Lop is waiting for you.
English Lops have the distinction of being the oldest of the lop breeds and they’re also known for having the longest ears (the ear length must be at least 21 inches). English Lops have the body size to match their long ears—they weigh more than 9 pounds—and the breed is enjoyed by many people who enjoy showing rabbits.
French Lops came along many years after the English Lops, and were originally developed by crossing English Lops with the Butterfly/Papillon rabbits of France in the 1800s. Today’s French Lops are beautiful rabbits that are even larger than English Lops: 10 ½ pounds and up. The French Lop’s ears resemble those of the Holland Lop rather than the English Lop.
Maybe you like Holland Lops and American Fuzzy Lops, but feel they’re just too small. Or maybe you like English Lops and French Lops, but feel they’re just too large. If you’re looking for that perfect, mid-sized lop rabbit, don’t miss the 4½- to 6-pound Mini Lop. The Mini Lop is a lovely breed with many excellent characteristics, including a pleasant disposition. Mini Lops were originally developed in Germany during the mid-twentieth century but weren’t recognized by the ARBA until 1980.
Intrigued by these delightful lop-eared breeds? Lop rabbits brighten the lives of rabbit enthusiasts all over the world with their charming good looks, their gentle dispositions, and their fascinating histories. Could one of the lop-eared rabbit breeds be right for you?
American Rabbit Breeders Association: arba.net
About the author
Samantha Johnson writes about the happy things in life—pets, home, family, food, and gardening—and thinks Mondays are the most wonderful day of the week. She fills her rare spare moments by crafting to-do lists and fulfilling the commands and demands of her bossy Corgi. View her portfolio at samanthajohnson.contently.com
Meet Marshmallow, an adorable Holland Lop