Polish Dwarf Rabbits
Polish dwarf rabbits are small rabbits without the dwarfing gene well-known in other breeds like the Netherland Dwarf and Mini Rex. The breed was first exhibited in England in 1884, though they are mentioned in rabbit articles since at least 1860.
Some sources said Polish rabbits were developed from wild rabbits, while others worked with Silvers, Dutch and Himalayans. The first Polish were imported into the United States in 1912 by W. E. Dexter of Boston, Massachusetts. Originally solid white with ruby eyes, today, they come in several colors.
Polish dwarf rabbits are often kept as pets or show stock. They are very small rabbits with short ears. The head should be compact and full and the eyes should be bold. The Polish should not be easily confused with the Netherland Dwarf, as they differ in many points and the Polish is a little bit larger.
The ideal weight of a Polish rabbit is 2-1/2 pounds, though they are allowed by the breed standard to grow to 3-1/2 pounds and should look a lot like a miniature New Zealand White.
White Polish rabbits may have ruby eyes or blue eyes. Ruby-eyed whites are albinos. Blue-eyed whites have a gene known as the Vienna gene. They also come in black, chocolate, blue and broken (white with spots, similar to a pinto horse). The lilac color is now in development.
Polish dwarf rabbits don't require a lot of space and do very well indoors. Cage bottoms for this breed should have good traction so they don't slip and injure themselves. They only need ¼ cup of pelleted feed every day. Hay can be given freely. It helps keep their digestive systems and teeth healthy. Treats should only be given occasionally in amounts no larger than your thumb tip. Dandelion leaves, carrot tops and parsley are good choices for treats.
Polish rabbits generally have a good temperament. They are calm and friendly; this is especially true of bucks. Does can become territorial when left intact. While these small rabbits are extremely cute and may appeal to children, no rabbit should be handled by small children without proper supervision to ensure that neither child nor rabbit are injured. The average lifespan for a Polish rabbit is 6 to 8 years, though some altered rabbits have lived as long as 10 years.
They are easy to care for. They do not require difficult grooming practices. They may fall prey to normal health hazards that affect any rabbit, such as earmites, respiratory disease, pasteurella, dental issues, urinary bladder stones, and broken backs. If you notice a change in your rabbit's eating habits or elimination habits, take note immediately and see a rabbit vet.
Indoor Polish dwarf rabbits can be easily trained to use a litter pan in their cage. When they are let out to run, always provide supervision so they don't damage electrical cords, carpeting or baseboards with their normal rabbit behavior. Having toys for them to play with may help distract them at times.
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