Looking for a gorgeous, soft, and adorable rabbit? The chinchilla rabbit is known for its soft, short coat which is also very easy to maintain.
These rabbits love to be picked up and because they are medium-sized rabbits, are not too fragile so can be cared for by older children.
People often become confused with the chinchilla rabbit. There is another rodent called the chinchilla, but it is not part of the rabbit family and cannot be bred with any rabbits.
However, the characteristics of a chinchilla coat are so lovely that breeders worked to craft a rabbit with similar fur.
Chinchilla rabbit guide: Chinchilla rabbits are a recognized breed that has a thick, short coat mostly grey in color. There are actually different breeds of this category, including the Standard Chinchilla, the American Chinchilla, and the Giant Chinchilla. For our purposes, we’ll be explaining the details around the American Chinchilla breed, as it is the most common.
What is a chinchilla rabbit?
Primarily known for their fur, chinchilla rabbits are medium-size rabbits. Their fur is short, thick, and usually has a grey color.
Because of their short fur, these rabbits don’t require much maintenance and indeed, only need to be groomed about once a month.
You can also find Standard Chinchilla rabbits, which are 5 to 13 pounds in size, and Giant Chinchilla rabbits, which are 12 to 16 pounds.
Chinchilla Rabbit History and Origin
The chinchilla rabbit breed was created in France in the early 1900s. The breed was developed to highlight its fur and the rabbits were primarily bread for fur purposes.
In 1919, chinchilla rabbits made their way from France to New York City, for State Fair. Once they arrived in America, the breed was adapted so that it became larger and its purposes now included breeding for meat as well as fur.
Finally, in 1924 the American Chinchilla Rabbit was formally recognized by the American Rabbit Breeders Association (ARBA).
Characteristics of Chinchilla Rabbit
Size, weight, shape
Chinchilla rabbits weigh between 9 and 12 pounds, making them a medium-sized breed. They are a bit on the stocky size as they were bred for both fur and meat. Their ears are long and stick up from their heads.
According to the ARBA, chinchilla rabbits must have the same color coat. This includes a dark grey base for the under color and then the top part of the fur is a dark blue-grey color. Light grey fills in between these two tones.
Around the eyes, there is a light color, almost pearl-like that circles the area. As for the tail, the topside is black with some white hair while the underside is white.
For eye color, chinchilla rabbits often have brown or blue-grey coloring but most breeders try to select a dark brown color.
The coat of a chinchilla rabbit is what really sets it apart from other breeds. The fur is short and soft with a rollback feature. Chinchilla rabbits will usually shed during fall and spring months but don’t require a lot of maintenance.
Similar to most rabbits, chinchilla rabbits will live between 7 and 10 years. With routine vet appointments and a healthy diet, they will often live to 10 years. This makes them a nice family pet to have.
Chinchilla rabbits like to play so be sure to have a range of toys they can interact with. Furthermore, they need enough space to properly run around in.
Most rabbits do well in an outdoor environment where they can have access to grass to play in. You can certainly keep chinchilla rabbits inside but as they need a large enough cage and enclosure, apartments are not the best environments.
Overall, chinchilla rabbits like to be picked up. Their fur is incredibly soft and over time, their temperament has adapted as they are used to being picked up and petted.
Chinchilla rabbits are not recommended for families with small children as they can be a bit skittish. However, they do well with older children who are better able to care for the rabbits.
Chinchilla Rabbit Care
Chinchilla rabbits are pretty hardy creatures. They do well in both indoor and outdoor settings, as long as the temperatures are not too extreme.
If you are planning on an outdoor environment for your chinchilla rabbits, just make sure that it is varied. There should be a secure area off the ground, to protect them from predators, and a grassy area they can access for exercise.
As for an indoor cage, make sure the habitat or cage is large enough. These are not tiny animals and so need to have plenty of room for movement. Plan for a cage that is at least 6 feet long.
To create the right indoor environment, make sure there is a space for exercise and a space for bedding. You should clean the bedding area every day and replace the materials once a week.
Chinchilla rabbits have the same diet requirements as other rabbits. They should have access to fresh hay whenever they want, and this should make up 70% of their diet.
The rest of their diet should be a mix of rabbit pellets, leafy vegetables, and some fruit. When picking fresh fruit and vegetables, make sure you select ones that are high in nutrients.
For example, we often think of rabbits eating lettuce but ordinary varieties, such as iceberg lettuce, doesn’t have a lot of nutrients in it. Instead, pick greens such as kale or swiss chard. Apples are also a nice treat, although they contain a lot of natural sugars so only a few pieces should be given at a time.
Finally, one of the benefits of chinchilla rabbits is that you don’t have to spend a lot of time grooming them. Give them a good brush every week or two and maybe extra if they are shedding.
Unlike some rabbits, who run the risk of collecting hair in their stomachs, chinchilla rabbits usually don’t have this problem.
Chinchilla Rabbit Health
Overall, there are no major health issues with chinchilla rabbits. This is a nice surprise as a lot of rabbit breeds have specific concerns to be aware of.
However, because they are rabbits, there are a few things to consider. Be sure to have a steady supply of hay on hand for your rabbit. The more rabbits chew, the more they naturally file down their teeth.
Without this chewing, rabbit teeth will continue to grow. In worst-case scenarios, rabbit teeth can grow so long that they actually poke through their face and jaw.
Another consideration is that rabbits have a tendency to attract ear mites. Moreover, flystrike is common with rabbits who live outdoors, as flies are attracted to their smells, and then lay their eggs on the rabbits which is quite uncomfortable.
If you plan on having more than one rabbit together and don’t want them to breed, then you will need to spay or neuter your rabbits.
Male rabbits can be neutered at 3 to 4 months of age while female rabbits can be spayed at 5 to 6 months of age. Remember that the old adage about rabbits is true and if you have two young rabbits, you may want to keep them separated until they have been spayed or neutered.
Generally, your rabbits should see a veterinarian once a year for a complete checkup. If your rabbit stops eating or has discomfort around their ears or bottom, then you should bring them in to be looked at right away.
Chinchilla Rabbit Uses
Chinchilla rabbits were first created as a breed for their fur. Thick and soft, it was used to line coats and other clothing items.
The breed then changed slightly and their frames became stockier as their purpose then included meat to eat.
Now, most chinchilla rabbits are used as pets. They have fairly calm demeanors and are used to being pet, especially due to their thick coats. Families love chinchilla rabbits and they do well both indoors and outdoors.
If you are interested in starting a hobby farm and breeding rabbits, this is one of the better varieties for this purpose. Chinchilla rabbits have litters that produce 6 to 9 babies which are good numbers.
Furthermore, chinchillas make good mothers and there is a high survival rate for litters.
Where to Get Chinchilla Rabbit Breed
If you’re ready to have this unique animal for a pet, the next step is to find a breeder that can offer such services. Thankfully, chinchilla rabbits are quite common and there are a lot of local breeders.
Just be sure to find a breeder that is reputable so you know you are getting an authentic chinchilla rabbit.
Chinchilla Rabbit Price
While the average price for a chinchilla rabbit will vary, you can expect to pay between $40 and $8o.
Are you someone who delights in the idea of having a cuddly rabbit you can both play with and pet? A rabbit with gorgeous fur that doesn’t need a lot of upkeep?
Moreover, a rabbit that has few health issues? Chinchilla rabbits are all these and so make a great addition to a family.