Rabbits are adorable pets that are generally easy to care for. Rabbits, no matter what size happens to be some of the cutest creatures on the planet, and for a long time now have been among the most popular family pets.
There are lots of different breeds, some more common than others. Then there are the rarer bunnies which are often extremely unique looking.
What’s a Small Rabbit?
There are several terms used for small rabbits including “dwarf” and “mini” but these don’t all mean the same thing.
- A Dwarf rabbit is one that has a dwarf gene that produces specific physical attributes including big eyes, short ears, a big round-shaped head, and a small body.
- Dwarf rabbits carry the dwarf gene from one parent. A dwarf bunny that gets the gene from both parents will either be born stillborn or die shortly after birth. These unfortunate rabbits are called “peanuts.”
- Sometimes a dwarf rabbit breeding will produce a “false dwarf” which occurs when the rabbit does not receive the dwarf gene from either parent. These rabbits will look physically a bit like a cross between a dwarf and a “regular” small rabbit.
- A “Mini” refers to a few different breeds of rabbits, some of which are dwarves and some not. The non-dwarf minis are smaller versions of existing breeds that do not have the physical characteristics of dwarfism.
In short, all dwarfs and minis are small rabbits, but not all small rabbits are dwarves or minis.
13 Smallest Rabbit Breeds
1. American Fuzzy Lop
- The American Fuzzy Lop weighs no more than 3 to 4 pounds as an adult.
- They require a lot of grooming because of their wool fur and special dietary needs.
- The breed is known for having a pleasant personality and is very social with people.
- American Fuzzy Lops are also very playful and are a good choice if you want a rabbit that likes toys.
- They are more susceptible to wool block due to their wooly fur and also to getting matted fur if not properly groomed.
2. Dutch Rabbits
- Dutch rabbits are one of the larger choices among the smaller breeds, coming in at 3-1/2 to 5-1/2 pounds maximum.
- These are a very common and popular pet rabbit breed.
- They come in a mix of white and black, blue, chocolate, gray, steel, or tortoise, with the white covering their midsection, the blaze of the face, and their feet and toes.
- This is a breed with an excellent history as a pet for children because of their wonderful outgoing temperaments.
- They require more room than some breeds and will need regular exercise.
3. Himalayan Rabbits
- An Adult Himalayan rabbit will weigh 2-1/2 to 4-1/2 pounds maximum.
- They have similar coloring to a Himalayan cat, with a white body and black, blue, chocolate or lilac “points” on their ears, nose, tail, and feet.
- They are actually one of the oldest rabbit breeds in the world.
- Unlike some other small rabbit breeds, Himalayans have a longer body and a much less compact build.
- Himalayans are a popular breed for both pets and for showing and are generally laid-back rabbits who love cuddling.
- They are considered “one of the best rabbits for young children” by the American Himalayan Rabbit Association.
4. Britannia Petite
- This breed is one of the smallest and weighs about 2 to 2-1/2 pounds when fully grown.
- This breed is also called the Polish rabbit
- They come in agouti, black, chestnut, otter, sable marten, and white.
- They may not be the best breed for small children as they can be more active and will nip.
- They have a very delicate frame and are best handled by experienced rabbit owners.
5. Netherland Dwarf
- One of the smaller rabbits on this list, the Netherland Dwarf reaches sizes of 1-3/4 to 2-1/2 pounds.
- They are one of the smallest rabbit breeds.
- Netherland Dwarf rabbits may not be the best pet for smaller children as they can be nippy and skittish.
- They tend to enjoy quieter environments and have a reputation as a good choice for adults-only homes.
- They also are at more risk than other breeds of malocclusion.
- Despite their tiny size, they need lots of room and regular exercise.
6. Mini Satin
- The Mini Satin weighs 3 to 4-1/2 pounds fully grown.
- The breed is a miniature version of the Satin rabbit and has the same beautiful satiny shimmer to their fur.
- They come in chinchilla, opal, red, Siamese, and white colors and patterns.
- Mini Satins are a popular pet rabbit choice for families and have a docile personality, but they can be shy around new people.
- Some Mini Satins can be nervous around children so they may not be a good choice for a home with small, boisterous children.
- They have smaller space needs so are a good choice for smaller living conditions and they don’t need a lot of exercises.
7. Mini Rex
- The Mini Rex is about 2-3/4 to 4-1/2 pounds as adult.
- The breed gets its name from its “rex” coat which has a velvety feel to it.
- They are a popular pet choice because of their incredibly soft and plush fur that comes in many colors.
- They also have docile, friendly temperaments and make pleasant companions.
- They may not be a good choice for very small children as they don’t enjoy being held tightly and do better with children old enough to respect their space.
8. Lionhead Rabbits
- Lionhead rabbits are 3 to 3-3/4 pounds at the most.
- They have thick, medium-length fur and get their name from the “mane” formed by the fur around their head.
- The rest of the fur on their body is shorter and not as dense as the mane.
- They come in many colors although only two are recognized as a breed standard which is REW (red-eye white) and tortoiseshell.
- They do require some extra grooming to care for their mane and they will molt their coats a few times a year.
- They are at a higher risk of malocclusion, hairballs, and digestive and respiratory health conditions.
- Lionheads have a reputation for being very affectionate, love playing and handling, and are a popular pet choice.
9. Jersey Wooly
- This fluffy breed weighs 2-3/4 to 3-1/2 pounds as adults.
- They have very thick, long fur on their bodies and will need a lot of grooming as well as a specific diet to keep their coat healthy.
- They come in most colors and patterns.
- Despite their grooming needs, they are not difficult to care for and can make a great calm pet with a very distinctive look.
- They are known for being good with children and have a reputation for never, or rarely, biting.
- They don’t need a great deal of room or extra exercise.
- They do have a risk of wool block if they’re not groomed properly.
10. Holland Lop
- Holland Lops range between 2-3/4 to 4 pounds maximum.
- The Holland Lop is the smallest rabbit breed with lop ears.
- Holland Lops come in most colors and patterns.
- They are known for having terrific personalities and are a very popular choice for a pet.
- They are known for not enjoying too much handling, so they are a better choice for families with older children.
- They do tend to chew more than some other breeds, so they’ll need lots of enrichment items to keep them happy.
- They also tend to need more exercise and room to move about than other small breeds.
11. Dwarf Hotot
- The Dwarf Hotot will weigh about 2 to 3 pounds when fully grown.
- They come in white with a black ring around their eyes which makes them look like little goth rabbits.
- Dwarf Hotots are a great choice for a pet as they enjoy being with people and have a reputation for bonding strongly with their humans.
- They also tend to enjoy handling more than many other breeds.
- They’re also very active so they’re a good choice for a family looking for a bunny that might enjoy activities like rabbit agility or clicker training.
- Despite their activity level, they don’t need a big cage so they’re a good choice for smaller living spaces.
- Compared to other breeds they have a higher risk of developing malocclusion.
12. English Angora Rabbit
- English Angora rabbits usually weigh between 5 and 6 lbs.
- They have a compact body and a broad, flat head, and short ears.
- They have fur on their ears, faces, and woolly feet.
- The English Angora comes in a variety of colors but they do need rather special care.
- This includes masses of grooming which the rabbits really enjoy.
- They need to be fed a special diet for them to stay nice and healthy.
13. Columbia Basin Pygmy
- Columbia Basin Pygmy little bunnies weigh less than 1 pound.
- They are adorable because of their soft and fluffy fur.
- This fur allows them to stay warm during the winter season and cool during the summer.
- All Columbia Basin Pygmy Rabbits have a grayish-brown coloration.
- Their life expectancy is 3 to 5 years due to predation.
- They require a lot of space and care that needs expert attention