Himalayan Rabbit
Oryctolagus cuniculus

   If you’re looking for a rabbit that loves to sit in your lap or be carried around, the Himalayan is the rabbit for you!

   The Himalayan Rabbits are known for being one of the best pet rabbits. They are very calm, easygoing, and easy to handle. Himalayans are not demanding, but they do enjoy attention from humans. Their coats are easy to care for, so the only thing about them that requires great care is keeping their cages clean.

  The Himalayan Rabbit is one of the most popular small rabbit breeds. Its distinctive markings and pink eyes make it a favorite of rabbit enthusiasts, and its calm, friendly attitude makes it a great pet. It is one of the best rabbits for children, with a slender, almost cat-like body that is easy for them to grasp. It is, however, important to remind them to be as gentle with the rabbit as he is with them.

For more information about Rabbits and their care see:
Guide to a Happy, Healthy Rabbit

  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Chordata
  • Class: Mammalia
  • Order: Lagomorpha
  • Family: Leporidae
  • Genus: Oryctolagus
  • Species: cuniculus


   Although the Himalayan’s name suggests that it originated in the Himalayas, it is unknown exactly where its origins lie. It is actually known by other names in different parts of the world, including the Russian, the Chinese, the Egyptian, and the Black Nose. It is known, however, that the Himalayan is one of the oldest rabbit breeds, and it is more widely distributed throughout the world than any other.
   The Himalayan came to the United States in the early 1900s. At that time, they were prized for their fur. Eventually, breeders began to raise them to show, and they also became popular as pets.


   Himalayans are easily recognizable by their pink eyes and distinctive color pattern. Their bodies are white, with darker markings on the nose, ears, tail, and feet. This is a small breed, weighing 2 ½ to 4 ½ pounds. They are the only breed that is classified in shows as cylindrical. They are judged in a stretched-out position.

Color differences:

   The black color variety is the only one in the Himalayan that was not produced by crossbreeding. Other acceptable colors are blue, chocolate, and lilac. This breed is born solid white, but its colored markings develop with age.

Himalayan Rabbit
Marshmellow Photo © Animal-World: Courtesy Kelly Simo


   Himalayans are easy to find in most areas and breeders are easily found online. Prices are usually $15 to $30.


Himalayan Rabbit Breed Profile“, PeoplesPetPlace.com, Copyright 2000-2008
Smallest Rabbit Breeds“, Go Pets America, Inc., Copyright 2008
Shepherd, Carl “Eli”, “History of the Himalayan Rabbit: Everything We Need to Know“, Referenced online, 2008
List of Rabbit Breeds“, Wikipedia, Copyright 2008

Featured Image Credit: 286865878, Shutterstock