If you’re thinking about a new family pet, why not consider a Rex rabbit?
These docile, friendly animals are cuddly and easy to take care of. If you’re thinking about a new family pet, why not consider a Rex rabbit?
There are many popular breeds of domestic rabbits. Among them is the Rex rabbit, a cuddly, even-tempered animal that would bring delight to any family. Most people are unfamiliar with how to care for a rabbit, making them a bit nervous taking on this new endeavor.
If you’re thinking about adding a Rex rabbit to the family, we’re here to provide you with all the necessary information.
From describing what makes them unique, to feeding and grooming instructions, you’ll finish this article with enough knowledge to bring one home.
What is a Rex Rabbit?
A Rex rabbit is a very docile, good-natured creature that would make a great addition to any family. It has short, plush fur which has a beautiful texture.
History and Origin
The breed originated after the discovery of a litter of wild gray rabbits in a French village in 1919. Thoroughly impressed with the wonderous fur, breeders decided to start a new lineage.
The Rex breed comes from the recessive rex gene mutation which gives the rabbit its plush, dense, and smooth fur.
Rex rabbits were displayed in Paris at an international rabbit show in 1924. They were then introduced to the United States before being accepted by the American Rabbit Breeder’s Association (ARBA).
Types of Rex Rabbit
There are two main Rex rabbit breeds: the Standard Rex rabbit and the Mini Rex rabbit.
Standard Rex Rabbit
Standard Rex rabbits are the more common breed. They are slightly larger than Mini Rex rabbits and therefore more easily bred. If a type of Rex rabbit isn’t specified, you can assume it is just the Standard variety.
Mini Rex Rabbit
Mini Rex rabbits are essentially smaller versions of Standard Rex rabbits and come with all the adorable characteristics of the Standard version.
Rex Rabbit Characteristics
The coat of Rex rabbits is what truly makes them stand out. The plush, thick fur has an almost velvety texture to it.
Indeed, there was a time when Rex rabbits were bred for their coats alone, although this has mostly fallen out of favor.
The faces of Rex rabbits include curly whiskers, a broad head, and upright ears, giving them a truly adorable appearance.
There are 16 different color types accepted by registered breeder associations. These include blue, amber, black otter, red, and a host of other adorable complexions.
Mini Rex rabbits will have the same color offerings to choose from.
Height and Weight – Size
Male Standard Rex rabbits will weigh between 7 and 9 pounds. Meanwhile, a female Standard Rex rabbit will weigh between 8 and 11 pounds.
Mini Rex rabbits are quite smaller. Male Mini Rex rabbits will weigh between 3 and 4.5 pounds while female Mini Rex rabbits will weigh between 3.5 and 4.5 pounds.
Interestingly, you will hardly find breeders that have both types. If Mini Rex rabbits are bred with Standard Rex rabbits, it can quickly alter sizes and blur the distinction between the two breeds.
Rex rabbits are so popular because of their temperament. They are very docile and patient and are perfect for families of all ages. This is the type of rabbit you want to get if you are looking for extra snuggles.
While Mini Rex rabbits are also docile, they can be a bit more excitable than Standard Rex rabbits.
If you have young children, Standard Rex rabbits are usually recommended. They are more laid back and their larger size makes them less vulnerable to tight snuggles.
This breed will typically live for five to six years. This is a nice time frame as it allows you plenty of time to bond with your pet.
Of course, proper care and routine health checkups will ensure as long a lifespan as possible.
You should take your rabbit to your veterinarian at least once a year. Even if your rabbit seems in good health, a thorough check-up will ensure that your rabbit maintains its good health.
Once your rabbit hits the age of five years old, consider taking your rabbit to the vet twice a year as there will usually be more serious health complications.
Litter and Potty Training
Rabbits need a place to, well, go, and there are a plethora of options available. Your Rex rabbit should have its own litter box that is separate from its eating area.
You can use shredded paper and while it is cheap, it does not absorb odor, so needs to be replaced frequently. You can also use paper-based bedding. It can be found at any pet store and while more expensive, does contain odors.
If you’re tired of constantly cleaning your rabbit’s litter area, it may be time to try potty training. It can take a while for your rabbit to figure it out, but if you stick with it, your rabbit will be able to use the toilet, leaving you with a lot less hassle.
Like most rabbits, Rex rabbits can develop sore hocks. This is when the bottom pads of a rabbit’s feet develop sores. If the sores become inflamed this can lead to infection.
Thankfully, sore hocks are largely preventable. Provide a healthy diet so your rabbit can maintain a healthy weight.
You will also want to check the floor of your rabbit’s cage. If the wire is too rough it can quickly irritate your rabbit’s paws.
The biggest issue with Rex rabbits is, like all rabbits, their teeth will continue to grow if they don’t have a way of naturally grinding them down. If rabbits have teeth that become too long, they can actually puncture their gums and mouth.
Chewing hay and crunchy produce should be enough to help rabbits grind their teeth down. If you suspect this isn’t happening enough, be sure to consult your veterinarian right away.
Rabbits are similar to cats in that they love to groom themselves. However, unlike cats, they aren’t able to cough up any hairballs.
If rabbits ingest too much of their own fur, it can become lodged in their intestines, leading to grave consequences. This risk grows exponentially during the spring when rabbits start to molt their thick winter coat.
While you will want to groom your Rex rabbit occasionally, you don’t actually need to groom it too often. Instead, aim for periodical brushing with a few extra sessions when it starts to shed.
Not only will regularly grooming rabbit fur keep your pet healthy, but it will also promote bonding between you and your new family member.
Similar breeds and comparison
The list of domesticated, intelligent breeds of rabbits is growing. If you’re not sure about a Rex rabbit in particular, you can look into Plush Lop rabbits and Velveteen Lop rabbits. These breeds have similar temperaments and that luscious, velvet fur.
Rex rabbits are growing in popularity for a reason. They are companionable, easy to care for, and look gorgeous. They have a similar temperament to cats and are perfect for families.
They are actually in some ways very similar to the temperament of the lionhead rabbit breed, which is one of our favorites!
How big do rex rabbits get?
Rex rabbits are considered medium-sized bunnies. They can grow to be 12 inches in length. The average weight is between 7 to 11 pounds. Females will be slightly larger than males and will measure on the larger end of these estimates.
How long do rex rabbits live for?
The average lifespan of a rex rabbit is 5 to 6 years.
How much is a Rex rabbit?
The price can vary greatly depending on the breeder. Expect to pay between $20 and $60 for a rabbit. This price is in line with other domestic rabbit breeds.
Are rex rabbits hypoallergenic?
Yes! If you or your family members are allergic, Rex rabbits are the perfect family pet. They will shed, but they produce a lot less dander than other domesticated pets.
It is the dander and not the hair that usually causes allergies to flare up, making rex rabbits incredibly hypoallergenic.
Are rex rabbits aggressive?
For the most part, Rex rabbits are not aggressive. In fact, it is their docile manner that makes them so suitable as a family pet.
You might see some aggressive tendencies when they are young and their activity level is high, around 5 or 6 months, but this should be short-lived.
What do Rex bunnies eat?
Rex rabbits are vegetarians. About 70% of their diet should be high-quality hay. The rest of their diet should be fresh produce.
They love munching on dark leafy greens such as lettuce and kale. They also love carrots and even fruit such as bananas, berries, and grapes.