American rabbit breed has been accepted by the ARBA initially as “Blue rabbit” because of its deep, dark blue colored fur that also looks like grey in some angles. They are in the medium-sized rabbit breed category weighing around 4 to 6 kilograms depending on the gender as the female ones are slightly lighter. They have a shape of a semi-arch with a relatively long loin. Aside from blue, there is also a white variety of this specie which is called American White Rabbit.
American White Rabbit has red eyes similar to the Albino breed while the other one is blue with dark slate color.
Behavior and Temperament
American rabbit has a very sweet temperament and a calm disposition which makes them an ideal house pet of those with older children. Both the Blue species and White species show submissive personality plus the fact that mother rabbit of this specie is good in taking care of the newborn rabbits. Having an American rabbit around with children is okay as long as the kids will not show threat to the rabbit.
This rabbit breed is highly social and are merrier if they have pair or even more companions to play with. They can build strong bonds with their companion rabbit but sometimes they also don’t get along well. If they are your sole pet in your home, this breed could become very clingy and requesting for human interaction. They may also request for playtime with their human.
They are curious creatures and would squeeze their way in and out of tunnels and holes so better be good in monitoring their activities. This breed as well as the other breeds is best active during sunset and during day break.
They will show aggression at some certain points like spraying urine and nipping or circling around you but this can be eliminated by having them undergo spaying or neutering. Studies prove rabbit aggressive behavior can be reduced greatly by doing such procedure as it eliminates the hormonal triggers of aggression.
Health and Care
Like other rabbit breeds, maintaining and keeping American rabbit is actually an easy task but it may require time and effort particularly if your pet is newly acquired. These time and effort includes helping them adjust in a new environment, cleaning their cage, making sure food keepers always have available stocks and more.
If you suspect that your rabbit is suffering from a condition, ask for advice from a veterinarian. Do a daily rabbit health check by examining their eyes and nose for unusual discharge and observing anything abnormal in their daily activities. Vaccinations for myxomatosis and viral diseases should be given to make sure that they are at their optimum health.
Their diet must always include fresh grass hay as much as possible. You may also offer fruits and vegetables aside from their daily pellet supply. For enrichment, you may provide them with safe toy chewable, and allow them to have certain schedule at least 3 hours a day for an out of the cage time activities. Always provide them or make it easily available for them to drink clean water every day.
History and Background of the American Rabbit
The American Rabbit Association recognized this breed of rabbit in 1917 in which the ARBA standard has been strictly followed. They were developed by Lewis H. Salisbury in Pasadena, California. The exact rabbit breeds in which the American rabbit were designed are not mentioned but it is believed that the specie originated from the blue Vienna rabbit, Beveren, Flemish giants and the Imperial breed (which has been extinct). At first this breed was named German Blue Vienna but after the World War I, the name was changed to American Blue Rabbit.
Before, this rabbit specie was one of the most popular pets in America not only for pet but also as source of meat in the commercial arena. However, as of this moment this specie continues to decline in numbers and is becoming critical. These days, American blue rabbits are considered rare.