Learn more about the Silver Rabbit Breed. Discover cool facts, pictures, resources and find information about caring for Silver Rabbits.
This rabbit breed information page is part of our rabbit breeds article series.
Silver Rabbit Breed Info
Recognized Colors: Black, Brown, Fawn.
Size: 4-7 pounds
National Specialty Club:
Silver Rabbit Information and History
Most judges and fanciers have a love or hate relationship with the Silver. Why? It’s just different! No other breed looks or feels quite the same, not in body type, or fur, or color, or even firmness of flesh. When you look at a Silver, you’re looking at the nearest representation we have today of what rabbits looked like at the dawn of their domestication in the early 1500’s. Most breeds have sure changed a lot since then, but the Silver more or less retains the style it had at the time of the Renaissance.
One of the first steps towards domesticating rabbits was to keep them in warrens or “walled rabbit gardens,” large wild areas surrounded by a stone wall. The rabbits were allowed to roam and reproduces freely within the warren, allowing the hunter easy hunting when he so desired. Records state that the rabbits kept in these warrens were Silver greys. In fact, there is mention that Sir Walter Raleigh brought the Silvers to England from Portugal in 1592, and that they were originally from Siam.
Silvers were certainly present in the United States prior to the Belgian Hare boom of 1900. It was one of the original breeds recognized by the National Pet Stock Association when it founded in 1910. This club would later become the American Rabbit Breeders Association.
But what does the Silver look like? A silver is primarily colored black, or brown (chestnut agouti), or fawn. Amidst the normal fur grow white guard hairs, evenly distributed and giving the coat a silvery luster when the rabbit moves. The proper fur type is very important to producing correct silvering. Silver fur is probably the shortest and densest of all flyback coats, and has a very snappy rate of return when stroked from tail to head. The body type is in the compact group, but is of medium-length rather than short, and a Silver should never be pushed or molded into position when being judged. Instead they should be allowed to stand or move naturally on the table. If you’ve never put your hands on a Silver, you should as soon as you get a chance. You may never feel a rabbit so rock-solid.
Unfortunately, it’s not very easy to find a Silver to put your hands on. This breed is decidedly rare, both in the United States and the United Kingdom. Other Silvered breeds exist around the globe, but the Silver maintains its original type only in the US and the UK. The best way to locate breeders is to contact the National Silver Rabbit Club – www.silverrabbitclub.com — or wait for the ARBA convention each year, where breeders usually have stock available. If you are interested in heritage rabbits, consider supporting the Silver. This breed has characteristics that, once lost, can never be regained while this world lasts.
Silver Rabbit Care
Here is a list of resources to help you care for your silver rabbits…
- How to Raise Rabbits – information and resources on the subject of raising rabbits
- Breeding Rabbits – learn more about how to breed rabbits for show, meat or profit
- Rabbit Supplies for Sale – find rabbit supplies for sale
- Feeding Rabbits – information and resources on the topic of feeding your rabbits
- Rabbit Health – learn more about rabbit health and care
Silver Rabbit Resources
Here is a listing of silver rabbit resources to help you out with your rabbit project…
- Rabbit Breeders Newsletter – be sure to claim your free subscription to our rabbit breeders newsletter in order to start receiving free rabbit information and resources via email
- Silver Rabbits for Sale – use our rabbit classifieds to find silver rabbits for sale
- Silver Rabbit Breeders – locate silver rabbit breeders using our huge rabbit breeders directory
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