FAQ: Angora Rabbits

James Glover
by James Glover
View Biography
 

The Angora rabbit was first created in England in the 12th century, reportedly by a monk who enjoyed breeding domesticated rabbits. Having long hair, Angoras require special care and attention.

What are Angora rabbits?
Angora rabbits have long, silky coats and erect ears. This breed is normally kept by enthusiasts for showing purposes or for their fur, which is clipped and subsequently spun. If they are to be kept as pets, the owner must be prepared for a comprehensive grooming routine.

Which breeds are classified as Angoras?
The Angora rabbit was first created in England in the 12th century, reportedly by a monk who enjoyed breeding domesticated rabbits. Later in the 18th century, one was mated with a Belgian Blanc de Bouscat in France to produce the French Angora. There are currently 4 varieties of Angora rabbit recognized in the US. There are also the Giant Angora, Satin Angora, and German Angora, which are not recognized in the US, but are used in commercial wool production.

What colors are there?
There are currently 32 varieties of Angora rabbit recognized in the US, including white (the most popular) and Black, Brown, Chinchilla, Chocolate, Blue, Sable, Fawn, Smoke and Lilac.

What grooming does the Angora require?
From about 8 or 9 weeks, the Angora rabbit will require comprehensive grooming to maintain the appearance of a snowball. If this is not maintained, the coat will become tangled very quickly, and unnecessary suffering will be caused. IF possible, it is best if the same person grooms the rabbit at the same time every day. Despite their being a thriving craft industry based on the fur of Angora rabbits, it is not necessary to clip the hair of pet Angoras.

Should Angoras be bathed?
Bathing your Angora should not be necessary if cleaning and brushing is carried out daily. If fur becomes stained, you can wipe it gently with cotton wool soaked in white spirit or warm water. When dry, brush through the area after applying a little talcum powder.

Need anything be done when an Angora molts?
Your normal grooming routine should be sufficient, since the hair will come away with normal brushing. You should not attempt to pluck the hair by hand unless you have been trained to do so, as this can cause pain if not done properly.

Do Angora rabbits need a special diet?
Angora rabbits will easily become overweight if overfed. If the rabbit is kept purely as a pet, then a normal rabbit diet of dry food and a small amount of green food is sufficient. Good quality hay and fresh drinking water should always be available. They require at least 18% protein to maintain their coat and avoid health problems.

(Continued on next page)