At Joybilee Farm, we once specialized in the breeding and improvement of French Angora Rabbits, exclusively. We bred to ARBA confirmation standards and colours. We tried to improve wool density and length, as well as selecting for rabbits who handled well for the show table, for pets and spinner’s wooler bunnies. Our customers would comment on the easy handling of our bunnies, which makes the regular tasks of grooming and fiber harvest a joy.
We bred our French Angora does only once each Spring, and we had a limited supply of babies available. Many of our babies were reserved a year before they were born. We no longer sell angora rabbits but we do continue to teach and write about organic and holistic rabbit care, especially focused on the unique needs of angora bunnies.
If you are breeding angora rabbits for the show table this information about angora rabbit genetics will be helpful to you.
Angora Rabbit Genetics
Care and Feeding of Angora Rabbits
Angora rabbits, because of their long hair coat require more care than other rabbits. Angora rabbits have more personality and make wonderful pet rabbits for adults, although they are subject to different stressors than short haired rabbits. They don’t grow as quickly so, while they certainly can be used for homegrown meat, they require longer to grow than rabbits that are bred for meat production.
The most common ailment of angora rabbits is wool block. If you have a rabbit now who has stopped eating and their poop size has decreased or is nonexistent, you have a veterinary emergency. Please immediately take away their pellets. Give the whole grains, fresh pinapple, dry straw and grass hay. Fresh papaya may also help. Your vet may have other suggestions for clearing the impaction and keeping your rabbit healthy.
The second most common ailment is wool mites. Mites are a tiny 8 legged parasite that feeds on the blood of the angora while laying their eggs in the wool. An angora rabbit with wool mites will have a greasy dandruff next to the skin. Their wool will easily matt because of the damage caused by the mites. In advanced cases, the rabbit can develop bald patches as the matted wool pulls away from the rabbit’s skin. Cat products used for fleas are successful on bunnies, but read the labels as not all products are safe for rabbits. Your vet may have other suggestions.
PLEASE DO NOT USE Tea Tree or Eucalyptus Essential Oils to kill the mites. You may also kill the rabbit. Rabbits cannot clear essential oils from their blood stream easily and may be poisoned by essential oils.