Small rabbit breeds are becoming popular pets and it’s not hard to see why! Not only are dwarf rabbits extremely cute, but they are also loving, affectionate, and friendly around people and their families.
If you live in an apartment or are looking for a small pet rabbit, you are in the right place! Check out our list of the smallest rabbit breeds that will be a perfect match for your family and fit right into your home.
The 10 Smallest Rabbit Breeds in the World
Before we go any further, you should know that dwarf rabbits and small rabbits aren’t the same.
To formally be considered a dwarf rabbit, a bunny needs to have a dwarfing gene. Many small rabbit breeds have the dwarfing gene.
However, some breeds of rabbits have gained their small size solely through selective breeding, in a process called dwarfing.
Now that’s cleared up, let’s check out the cutest smallest rabbit breeds you can buy!
Weighing only 1.1 to 2.5 pounds, the Netherland Dwarf is the smallest breed of domestic rabbit.
Compact and small, Netherland Dwarf rabbits have large heads that are quite disproportionate when compared to their short and round bodies. They have short necks, big eyes, small erect ears, and a short glossy coat that comes in a variety of colors.
Although affectionate and sweet-natured, Nethies have a shy and skittish temperament and are not the best choice of pet for young children. However, if you invest time and effort and start handling your bunny from a young age, you’ll be rewarded with a calm and affectionate companion.
The Britannia Petite is a small breed of rabbit with an arched body shape that gives it an appearance of a tiny hare. This small breed weighs from 1.5 to 2.5 pounds and is one of the smallest rabbit breeds recognized by the ARBA (source).
Not for novice owners of homes with young kids, the Britannia Petite has a highly energetic and lively temperament that is better suited for shows. If you decide to keep one as a pet, make sure that your bunny has a spacious enclosure and plenty of outdoor play.
Weighing only 2 to 3 pounds, the Dwarf Hotot rabbit breed was developed in Germany by crossing a dwarfed breed with a Blanc de Hotot.
Although small, Dwarf Hotots are hard to miss since they have completely white fur and black eye markings that resemble eyeliner. While striking, their coat doesn’t require a lot of grooming making the Dwarf Hotot an excellent choice if you are looking for a low-maintenance pet bunny.
A popular show rabbit and a great pet, the Dwarf Hotot is a sweet, energetic, and playful breed. Once they get used to being handled, these bunnies make affectionate and friendly companions.
Weighing from 2.5 to 3.5 pounds the Jersey Wooly is a popular breed of rabbit with adorable wooly fur. This pint-sized bunny has a compact build, upright ears, a square head, and a short coat that comes in a variety of colors.
Popular as a show rabbit and a pet, the Jersey Wooly has a sweet and gentle nature. This happy-go-lucky bunny doesn’t need an experienced rabbit owner and will make a great pet and an affectionate companion to the right home.
Despite its name, the Polish rabbit most likely originated in England, not in Poland. Weighing from 2.5 to 3.5 pounds, this domestic rabbit has a compact body, short head, full cheeks, and large eyes.
Calm and friendly Polish rabbits make amazing pets and like to be picked up and handled from a young age. They generally remain affectionate throughout their lives and get along nicely with children.
Striking and charming Lionhead rabbit got its name from the wooly fur that encircles its head and resembles a lion’s mane. Weighing between 3 and 3.7 pounds, this small rabbit has a compact body, short furry ears, and a thick and fluffy coat.
Good-natured and friendly Lionhead rabbits like to play and are becoming increasingly popular pets for families with children. These cute-looking and small furballs like to have company and are always in the mood to play.
American Fuzzy Lop
American Fuzzy Lop is another small rabbit breed weighing from 3.5 to 4 pounds. They have compact bodies that appear quite muscular, a flat face, and ears that lop to either side of the head.
These small bunnies have wooly coats that come in a variety of different colors and can also be collected and spun into yarn.
American Fuzzy Loops are playful, active, and friendly rabbits with big personalities, and are extremely popular pets. Affectionate and amicable, they like to spend time with their owners and also enjoy the company of other rabbits.
Usually weighing between 2 and 4 pounds, the Holland Lop is another small rabbit breed of Dutch descent. This sweet lop-eared bunny has a stocky body, large head, and long floppy ears that are wider at the bottom.
Holland Lops have a fluffy medium-length coat and a distinctive crown of fur on top of their heads. As one of the most popular rabbit breeds in the USA today, Holland Lops are great show rabbits and make wonderful pets to people of all ages.
Due to their lively, curious, playful, and sweet natures, Holland Lops make great pets to children and are always up for some fun and adventure.
Smallest of all the Angora breeds, the English Angora rabbit breed usually weighs from 5 to 6 pounds. The wooly, silky coat that covers every inch of their bodies is this breed’s distinguishing trait. The coat that comes in many different colors requires special care and is highly sought after for spinning.
English Angora rabbits have a friendly and docile nature and make wonderful pets and show rabbits. This cute and fluffy rabbit likes to interact with its owners and to be handled, but they have high grooming needs compared to other breeds from our list.
The Mini Rex is a small breed of rabbit weighing from 3.5 to 4.5 pounds. They have finely boned bodies, short necks, thick ears, and a short plush coat which is the breed’s most distinctive feature.
Their striking appearance makes Mini Rex rabbits very popular at rabbit shows, but they also make amazing pets. These plush bunnies get along with people of all ages and have calm and friendly personalities.
What Is Considered a Small Bunny?
To be considered small, a rabbit should have a maximum weight of 4 pounds. With that being said, most small rabbits are either dwarf or mini breeds.
As mentioned earlier, a dwarf rabbit and a small rabbit aren’t technically the same. Formally speaking, a dwarf rabbit is any rabbit that is born with a dwarfing gene.
A small rabbit, on the other hand, is often the result of selective breeding of successively smaller generations. Since these small rabbits don’t carry the dwarf gene, they aren’t officially recognized as dwarf breeds. But, that doesn’t mean they aren’t small.
The Brittani Petite and Polish rabbit breeds are fine examples of small rabbits that don’t carry the dwarf gene. These two breeds have gained their petite stature solely through selective breeding.
What Is the World’s Smallest Rabbit?
Weighing less than a pound when fully grown, the Columbia Basin Pygmy is the smallest rabbit breed in the world. This undomesticated small rabbit breed is unfortunately endangered and can’t be owned or kept as pets (source).
The Columbia Basin Pygmy rabbit breed is only found in a small region of Washington state and is one of the rarest rabbit breeds in the world.
In the effort to preserve the breed and help it thrive again the remaining rabbits were placed in several breeding programs. Various breeding programs are still underway and thanks to these efforts Columbia Basin Pygmy rabbits can be found in the wild.
While the Columbia Basin Pygmy is the smallest undomesticated breed of rabbit, the Netherland Dwarf is the smallest of the domestic rabbit breeds. Unlike pygmy rabbits, you can purchase and own a Netherland Dwarf bunny who on average weighs from 1.1 to 3.5 pounds.
There are many cute and fluffy small rabbit breeds you can choose from. Each small rabbit breed comes with distinctive traits and characteristics that make them unique.
Before you decide to bring a small rabbit into your home, take some time to consider whether you will be able to care for it properly. Although smaller in size than regular rabbit breeds, dwarf rabbits have the same needs as any other rabbit. Meaning, you’ll need to feed, groom, care, and play with your bunny all the same.