Britannia Petite Rabbit – information and facts about the Britannia Petite Rabbit Breed. Learn more about Britannia Petite Rabbits in this article. Breed photos are included.
Now, we will know more about Britannia Petite Rabbits. These very special small rabbits are popular in rabbit shows because of their natural ability to pose. What else do you think are the interesting characteristics of Britannia Petites?
Britannia Petite Rabbit Facts
Having originated in England as Polish, ARBA renamed this old breed upon its arrival in United States because there is already a recognized rabbit breed named Polish. Back in England, it was thought that Britannia Petite came from the common white hutch rabbit breed. There are colored petites that are shown, prominently with the Ruby Eyed Whites for a couple of years. The ruby-eyed white rabbits are the ones that were brought to United States. But across the time, ARBA recognized other colors of petites, namely the Black, Black Otter, Chestnut Agouti and Sable Marten. Along with the Ruby Eyed Whites, these are the 5 showable colors of the Britannia Petite breed.
It was not until 1950s that the eye and body color of the petites changed. Originally, most of them were whites with either red or blue eyes. The ruby-eyed white rabbit is a true albino. On the other hand, the blue-eyed white, which contains the Vienna White gene, is not a true albino. It was on 1950s when colored rabbit breeds of Britannia Petite have been recognized by different rabbits clubs across the country. Slowly, they were integrated in the mainstream and recognized by ARBA. In 1997, the black and chocolate colored petites were recognized. In 1982, blue variety was approved and broken variety in 1998, respectively.
Indeed, the Britannia petites are so old, that at one point, it nears the point of extinction. Fortunately, some dedicated rabbit breeders were able to save these little rabbit breeds. They were first exhibited in England in 1884, which attests to how old the breed is.
They are one of the smallest rabbits among the domestic rabbit breeds, weighing only about 2 ½ pounds at maximum in their ideal maturity stage. Usually, this refers to the 6 months age rabbits. It’s interesting to note that the breed has developed this size only after some generations, since the original breeds of the petites are larger in size. The first batch of ruby-eyed white rabbits brought to United States does not have the dwarfing gene.
These small rabbits have short ears that touch each other all the way to the tips. Ideally, they should have a short head characterized by full cheeks and bold eyes. They’re often confused as similar to Netherland Dwarf due to their small size. It’s just that Britannia Petite is a little larger compared to Netherland Dwarf and their heads are not rounded. They also differ in other areas such as coat structure, body type and colors.
3. Personality and Care
The small size of Britannia Petites gives a couple of benefits to its owners. One of which is in caging. Apparently, the petites don’t need a lot of space in the cage and barn facilities. However, to ensure that they keep their high energy, enough space is also considered for them to be able to run. They can jump high, run fast and even compete with the other rabbits. Because of this lively spirit, it should be properly noted that that the bottom of the cages must be ensured to not be slippery.
Britannia Petites are intelligent and inquisitive. They love to climb and explore things. Generally, they are calm and friendly, especially the bucks. Does that were not spayed are usually territorial. But generally, they are energetic and can become extremely lively.
Children who handle these rabbits should be properly supervised to make sure that the rabbits are not inadvertently injured. But a good point to note is that they really are not that good with children, most especially that they would rather prefer moving than be cuddled. Also, rabbit-proofing of a room, wherein you allow them to roam around in the room freely, is discouraged. This is because of their tendency to chew on carpets, baseboard and electrical cords.
They are miniature, fine-boned and slender rabbits. Their body is arched and hare-like. The head is wedge-shaped in profile, with a quite pointed nose and ears held close together above the head, which all couples to their appearance of being alert.
Britannia Petites are most healthy when fed with ¼ to ½ cup of pellets everyday, along with unlimited fresh hay and grass, as well as occasional fruits and vegetables. The amount of pellet is based on the activity level of the petite.
And in terms of their health, Britannia Petites do not do well in high or low temperatures, as much as other rabbits. They are quite prone to hairball obstructions and matted coats. Any changes in diet or habits of the rabbit should be immediately referred to the veterinarian.
4. Showing Britannia Petites
Showing Britannia Petites always comes in an interesting note, most especially to the judges. This is heavily due to the fact that Britannia Petites are natural show rabbits distinguished for their elegant, upright pose. If they are handled properly with patience, any judge with experience can get them to pose naturally upright. However, if they fail to do so, they should only be mildly faulted because of their nature as active rabbits. They don’t necessarily require a lot of prodding in order for them to show themselves off. Indeed, rabbits can be easily trained to use a litter box. And when they are outside their cages, you can train them in accepting a harness.
It has to be understood that in handling and training Britannia petites to become show rabbits, time and patience is necessary. And when you’re able to master that, they will always be at your own advantage.
Britannia Petites are regular in rabbit shows, both in local and national level. They’re being compared to the Standard of Perfection and assessed based on the merits recognized by ARBA. This is why they are known as fancy exhibition breeds and pets.
Given all these amazing characteristics of the Britannia Petites, will you choose this lively and entertaining breed to be your next pet? It’s definitely your call!