The Rex fur gene was discovered in rabbits in early 1900s France.
Mona R. Berryhill created the first Mini Rex breed by crossing a black Dwarf Rex rabbit with an undersized Lynx Red, resulting in a tiny little furball. The Mini Rex rabbit’s original creation was castor-colored.
This breed is now a popular domestic pet bunny. However, not every rabbit is suitable for every home. How do you care for a mini rex rabbit if you’re thinking about getting one, and are they the perfect pet for you?
In this article, we discuss the breed’s nutritional and housing requirements. We also consider their temperament, grooming needs, and any health problems they may have. Finally, we have the answers to all of your breed-related questions.
- Size: Small/Mini
- Weight: 5 – 4.5 pounds
- Lifespan: 7-10 years
The well-proportioned body, lush coat, and overall appealing look of Rex rabbits are well-known. The Mini Rex rabbit’s minute stature adds to its charm.
The Mini Rex features a compact body shape and a well-rounded back. It has well-developed shoulders, hind legs, and a well-balanced stomach. The legs are small and straight, although not as short as those of other dwarf rabbits.
The rabbit also has a short neck that is practically undetectable because the head usually is close to the shoulders, giving it a compact appearance. The ears are thick and straight, measuring up to 3.5 inches in length.
The striking fur of a Mini Rex distinguishes it. “Rexed” fur has all hairs the same length, no guard hairs, and the coat points out from the body rather than down. As a result, the fur is incredibly silky and velvety, as well as low-maintenance.
Grooming is required for all rabbits, including a monthly nail trim. On the other hand, short-haired rabbits do not require the same amount of detangling and brushing as long-haired rabbits.
At the same time, most rabbits like being brushed with a soft-bristled brush. Brushing your Mini Rex’s fur once a week or more may be fun for both of you and help foster a relationship.
Mini Rex rabbits are used for exhibitions and shows since they come in various hues and markings. The American Rabbit Breeders Association recognizes nearly 20 Mini Rex colors.
Single-color, tricolor, broken, and patterned patterns are all recognized patterns for Mini Rex rabbits. Tricolor rabbits have a coat that is white with two additional colors.
Patches of any color with white make up a broken coat. A patterned coat is a broken coat with varied patterns like eye markings, head markings, ear coloration, tail markings, and body spots. Mini Rex rabbits can also come in a variety of colors, including castor. A coat described as “castor” has brown on top, red beneath the brown, and slate blue on the bottom.
According to the ARBA breed standard, these are the acceptable colors:
- Black otter
- Blue-eyed white
- Red-eyed white
- Silver Marten
The Mini Rex is a popular choice for families seeking their first pet. These are ideal selections for individuals, couples, seniors, or small children since they are calm, friendly, and docile.
However, don’t leave children or bunnies alone.
A small kid holding the bunny too tightly may cause it to wiggle and tumble out of the youngster’s hands. This is why children should sit on the ground and play with a Mini Rex.
Like other rabbit breeds, the Mini Rex is intelligent, although teaching may take some effort. You can teach it to stay, come to you when you call, and even go pee.
To train your pet rabbits, be patient and offer a reward such as food or treats. When it is unable to fulfill your order, do not yell or shout. If a rabbit refuses to train, even the most composed bunny might turn aggressive and be violent.
How to Care For a Mini Rex Rabbit
Taking care of a Mini Rex is similar to taking care of other rabbit breeds. You must provide your pet with the proper feed, shelter, and companionship, as well as take it to a veterinarian for appropriate medical treatment.
Although certain bigger breeds may require a greater protein diet, most rabbits need the same nutritional balance.
Treats are great occasionally, but they shouldn’t make up more than 10% of your rabbit’s regular diet. Fruit should be consumed in moderation. It’s popular among rabbits, although it’s heavy in sugar.
Not all rabbit hutches, cages, and enclosures are created equal. They aren’t all supposed to be viewed in the same light.
Indoor rabbit enclosures should be built of rabbit-safe wire and have a plastic bottom to place rabbit-friendly bedding at the bottom. Bunnies like to chew everything and might quickly munch their way through a weak cage; so, the wire should be robust and resilient. It should be on the bottom of the cage, regardless of the material you chose.
Wire bottoms are uncomfortable for rabbits’ feet and can be harmful (even sore hocks are a common side effect of standing on the wire, so choose your base wisely). Choose bunny-friendly bedding for your rabbits, such as shredded paper or cardboard, wood pellets, straw, or hay. Spot-clean their bedding daily, and replace it entirely once a week.
Mini Rex fur is plush, with some types having short coats and others having longer coats. These rabbits will require grooming on a weekly or biweekly basis. Brush their fur to keep it clean, lustrous, and free of pests such as mites and parasites.
At least once a week, use a tiny brush. Groom your bunny more regularly throughout its molting cycle to avoid wool blockages and fur intake. This can build up in the digestive tract, creating blockages and other problems.
And, even if your rabbit is filthy, never bathe it since it will stress it out. To spot clean your pet, use a moist cloth. Dry the rabbit with a clean, dry, and soft cloth after wiping it down.
Trim your pet’s nails regularly and look for growing teeth. If you are not comfortable doing so, you can have the vet clip your pet’s nails and inspect its teeth. Examine your pet’s large ears for parasites as well as debris and loosened fur.
Fortunately, the Mini Rex has a healthy immune system. Some breeds have special breeding-related health issues. This is not true of the Mini Rex rabbit. Your pet Mini Rex may survive for up to ten years if properly cared for and fed.
Nonetheless, all rabbits are susceptible to certain disorders. So keep a watch out for indications of illness in your pet, including lethargy, loss of appetite, and diarrhea.
Rabbits’ digestive tracts are delicate. Furthermore, several human-annoying symptoms can quickly turn fatal for rabbits, such as gas, constipation, and diarrhea.
Gastrointestinal stasis is a common but potentially fatal condition. GI Stasis occurs when materials do not move through the intestines as they should. There are several reasons for GI stasis, including:
- Hairballs and other blockages
- Inadequate dietary fiber
- Carbohydrate-rich foods
- Dental issues
Rabbits can potentially acquire a variety of respiratory issues. Bacterial infections are one possible reason. Another example is mold in the hutch. Respiratory disorders can swiftly progress to pneumonia if not treated.
Some signs of respiratory issues are visible, such as wheezing and shortness of breath. Others, such as drowsiness and lethargy, may not be.
Check your rabbit hutch for mold and mildew regularly. If you locate it, treat it right away. Visit your veterinarian if you suspect your rabbit has a respiratory illness.
The front teeth of rabbits never stop growing. A high-fiber diet rich in hay can help maintain their teeth ground down to a regular length. Rabbits require regular dental examinations due to the rapid growth of their teeth.
Rabbits chew so much because they need to file down their teeth to keep them from becoming too long. When this happens, teeth can grow directly into the rabbit’s mouth and jaws, causing significant discomfort and a loss of appetite.
Another issue to look for is parasites in the ears or fur, such as mites, fleas, and ticks. Typically, rabbits infested with these parasites dwell in an enclosure with inadequate cleanliness and upkeep.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Much Exercise Does a Mini Rex Need?
Mini Rex rabbits require moderate activity. They will require several hours of out-of-hutch time every day, as do all rabbits, to stretch their legs and blow off steam. Ideally, have all-day access to an exercise area. This can be provided through a connected hutch and run.
Are Mini Rexes Territorial?
When maintained in a tiny enclosure, Mini Rexes may become territorial, according to experts. During the mating season, males may become violent against other males. They may bite and scratch opponents to establish dominance and, if required, battle with other males.
What Is the Difference Between a Mini Rex and a Rex Rabbit?
Mini Rex and Rex rabbits are two distinct breeds with the same fur type. A Rex’s physique is meatier, while Mini Rex’s are more compact. The Mini Rex body shape is not intended to be a meat breed, although the Rex body form is. They have a varied head shape and have different-sized eyes and ears.
Is a Mini Rex Rabbit for You?
Mini Rex rabbits are America’s favorite rabbit breed because of their gorgeous fuzzy appearance, gentle temperaments, and snuggly size. As long as you treat them carefully, these bunnies are suitable for new parents, youngsters, and the elderly.
It is essential to focus on your pet’s general health, housing, and dietary requirements. Keep your pet active by scheduling regular outside play dates. To protect it from predators, it should only be under your watch.
Mini Rex rabbits are low-maintenance and do not require regular grooming except during the molting season. Take care of your rabbit’s daily needs, and you will have a loyal companion for many years.