Is a Lionhead rabbit a good pet?

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A lionhead rabbit is a well-mannered, social and friendly pet. Almost all the owners have loved the Lionhead and have declared Lionhead rabbit a good pet. It can be easily trained and goes well with children. An incredible tolerant breed that is a well-suited pet for the family.

Temperament: What makes Lionhead rabbit a good pet?

Lionhead rabbit possesses those qualities that make them a very friendly and well-mannered bunny. The keepers do not have any complaint on them, their cute appearance will always seek attention. Like any other rabbits, they do require a certain level of attention. Lionhead loves to spend some time with keepers every day.

Lionhead bunnies are not like dogs or cats, they can be left alone for long periods. The Social connection will not be that strong, but they do seek attention.

Normally you can expect aggression in Lionhead rabbits. But whenever they feel insecure, they do get aggressive. A wrongful touch, painful holding or signs fo danger(dogs/cats) nearby. How do know when your rabbit is aggressive? They will grunt and their ears will be back, you can easily make out that your rabbit is not comfortable. Maintain distance, and analyze what caused your rabbit to be aggressive.

Lionhead rabbit

What is a Lionhead Rabbit?

The name suggests the appearance of the rabbit. The Lionhead rabbit has a wool mane around the head, that depicts a male lion. The mane is around 2 inches long that will encircle the head. Lionhead has short ears with 2 to 3 inches and has a compact body.

Most popular and fancy pets of the United States. Most of the keepers love for their mane, different body colors and their good temperament. Their cute appearance alone can draw huge crowds around.

Where do Lionhead bunnies come from?

The history behind Lionhead rabbits is not very clear. The Lionhead bunnies are originated in France and Belgium by crossing two types of dwarf breeds. The breed can be Netherland Dwarf and a Jersey Wooly, but not substantiated. This cross resulted in the breed of rabbits that has a mane. The gene that resulted in the growth of wool around the head is called as “mane” gene.

The Lionheads gained popularity in the 1990s around Europe and later in the United States. In 2002 the BRC ( British Rabbit Council, the United Kingdom) recognized the Lionhead breed. In 2014 the Lionhead Rabbit got recognition in the ARBA( American Rabbit Breeders Association ).

How long do Lionhead rabbits live?

The lifespan of the Lionhead rabbit is around 8 to 10 years. The rabbits are delicate animals, that require proper housing, a well-balanced diet and a little bit of physical activity. Good physical activity will keep the rabbit healthy, the ideal weight should be 3 lbs (1.36 kg).

How big does a Lionhead rabbit get?

Lionhead rabbits are small with 3 inches long ear and 2 inches of wooly mane. The length of 8 to 10 inches and a weight of 3 lbs (1.36 kg). But it can reach weight of 1.7 kg( 3lb 12oz ).

Lionhead rabbit mane types

Lionhead rabbit is known for its mane. They do have two types of mane – Single mane and double mane. The Single mane rabbit has a medium length of fur, whereas the double mane Lionshead has covered with more than 50 percent of long fur.

The lionhead rabbit having a double mane gene will have a lot more mane circling their head than a single mane rabbit. Whereas the single mane Lionhead will have a regular mane of wool around the head and ears.

Mane gene is a dominant gene, if the lionhead rabbit is crossed with another rabbit breed, still the DNA holds the mane gene.

Do Lionhead rabbits lose their mane?

The Lionhead rabbits with a single mane will tend to lose their mane when they get older. The rabbits tend to lose wool as they grow older, this diminishes even the mane.

Lionhead rabbit

What colors do Lionhead rabbits come in?

Lionhead rabbits come in sever color groups-

  • Agouti Color Group – Chocolate, chinchilla, Opal, Lynx, Sable Agouti, Squirrel (blue chinchilla), Chocolate chinchilla and Chocolate Chestnut/Agouti.
  • Marked Color Group – Broken/Butterfly, Harlequin and Vienna Marked.
  • Self Color Group – Black, Blue, Blue-Eyed-White [BEW], Chocolate, Lilac, Ruby-Eyed-White [REW], Black Tort, Blue Tort, Chocolate Tort, and Lilac Tort.
  • Shaded Color Group – Chocolate Point, Sable Point, Seal, Siamese Sable, Smoke Pearl, Smoke Pearl Point(Bluepoint) and Pointed white.
  • Tan Color Group – Black Otter, Blue Otter, Chocolate Otter, Fox (Tortoise Otter), Sable Marten, Silver Marten, and Smoke Pearl Marten.
  • Wideband Color Group – Fawn, Frosty (Frosted Pearl), and Orange.

The United States ARBA( American Rabbit Breeders Association) recognizes Tortoise(Blue, Black, Chocolate, and Lilac) and Ruby Eyed White(REW). While many other colors are in the certification of development(accepted into ARBA only after three successful presentations). The Lionhead rabbit colors are Smoke Pearl, Smoke Pearl Point, Sable Point, Seal, Siamese Sable, Blue Eyed White, and Chocolate that are in the Certification of Development state.

How do you take care of a Lionhead Bunny?

Lionhead bunnies require a spacious enclosure, a healthy diet, physical activity, fresh hay, and water. In particular, Lionheads require special care for their wooly mane. Lionheads are sensitive animals, require proper attention and care on a daily basis.

  • Spacious enclosure
  • Healthy diet
  • Fresh hay, and water
  • Timely Vaccination

Spacious enclosure for Lionhead bunnies

A proper spacious enclosure will give your rabbits a perfect hideout and makes them feel safe. Good housing will enhance a healthy life.

If you have already made a decision to get a bunny to your house, the first thing to consider is how much available space can be utilized. The rabbit requires an enclosure with enough length to wonder, normally 5 times the size of the rabbit and height should be as tall as a rabbit can stand upright.

Keeping rabbits indoor or outdoor, it’s your choice. Both have their advantages and disadvantages.

If space is a real concern, like you stay in an apartment complex or dorm, then indoor is the only option. There is a number of rabbit cages available, that can make your rabbit comfy and happy.

If you have a big backyard or you living in a homestead, you can build an outdoor rabbit hutch. Rabbits can run around freely in the hutch.

Healthy diet

Once you figure out the enclosure, the next important part is a healthy diet. Not only what they eat, but knowing also what should be avoided is also important. Some food are toxic to rabbits’ health. Babbies are left with mothers for 3 to 4 weeks old. Try not to force any food, the options are what to eat and what to avoid is discussed below.

Timely Vaccination

Vaccination to your Lionhead rabbit is always recommended by many vets. Timely vaccination is as important as not putting your bunny at risk. Some of the deadly diseases you can avoid by vaccination are Myxomatosis and Viral Haemorrhagic Disease (VHD). The ARBA and BRC associations make vaccination compulsory if you need to get them for the show. The cost of vaccination to Lionhead rabbit is around $20 to $25.

Some of the other concerns particularly to the rabbits are overgrown molars(dental issue) and Neutering. Both are important as vaccination. Overgrown molars are usually caused when they are not given enough vegetables and hay. If the Rabbit is on a soft food diet, this may lead to dental issues.

Neutering should be done for both bucks and does if you are not planning on multiple babies. Overcrowding of your pen can be avoided and also aggressive behavior can be seen, due to mating issues.

Always consult your vet for any health issues, the above information is shared only for knowledge purposes alone.

What is the best bedding for Lionhead rabbits?

Choose a proper enclosure that makes your lionhead rabbit feel safe. Now it should feel the comfort of bedding too. Lionhead rabbits use bedding for sleeping purposes alone. The litter box should be provided separately and kept at the corner of the enclosure.

If you are tight on budget, the shredded cardboard or Hay is a good option. They provide insulation and comfort for the rabbits. If you think you are not giving justice to the bedding, choose Carefresh Custom Rabbit/Guinea Pig Pet Bedding from Amazon, best for indoor enclosure bedding.

  • The bedding is soft and fresh(10-day odor control)
  • clean – low dust and easy to clean
  • Dry bedding – 2X more absorbent 
  • No harsh chemicals or dyes

Carefresh Custom Rabbit/Guinea Pig Pet Bedding is loved by many keepers. The main advantage it the keep your Lionhead rabbit warm, dry and odorless.

What do Lionhead rabbits like to eat?

Lionhead rabbits eat hay, pellets, fruits, and vegetables. A rabbits diet should consist of 70 % of hay, 20 % of high fiber pellets and 10 % of fruits and vegetables.

Healthy food is the main reason behind happy rabbits. Rabbits spend most of their time eating. But they eat less in the quantity. Older rabbits prefer low nutrition food. But young rabbits require more nutrition.

Hay

Hay is the main diet for the rabbit. A natural source of fiber that helps in easy digestion. It’s a staple food for any rabbits. We recommend two types of hay are Alfalfa and the other is Timothy hay.

  • Alfalfa has high nutrition content and its suitable for younger rabbits. The high nutrition can make your bunnies obese, so always feed the younger ones with Alfalfa.
  • Timothy hay though it has high fiber, the nutrition content is not as high as Alfalfa. This is recommended for older rabbits, to avoid excess nutrition.

If you feeding for the first time or a new keeper, do consult your vet or nearby pet store.

Fibrous Pellets

Pellets contain protein, fiber, healthy fat, carbohydrates a properly balanced diet. As our rabbits are not physically active (roaming around your backyard) giving them pellets alone makes them obese. Always 20 percent of the diet should include the pellets.

Look for pellets that are

  • Rich in antioxidants
  • Made with probiotics and chelated minerals
  • No artificial ingredients or refined sugars
  • No seeds or any other miscellaneous pieces
  • More fiber and less protein

A lot of fresh water should be available all the time. A healthy rabbit drinks a lot of water and eats a lot of hay. Always clean their container(water bottle) before filling fresh water.

Avoid feeding these foods to Lionhead rabbits

What food is toxic to Lionhead rabbits? There is a number of foods, that needs to be avoided:

  • Bread.
  • Rice.
  • Potatoes.
  • Biscuits.
  • Chocolate.
  • Lollies.
  • Chips.
  • Avocado.

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