Californian rabbit is a very beautiful domestic rabbit breed. It is also known as California White. George West in Southern California developed this breed in the early 1920s. He developed this wonderful rabbit breed by crossing Himalayan breeds and the Standard Chinchilla rabbit breed, and then crossed the offspring with the New Zealand Whites.
His purpose was to develop a good pet/show rabbit breed. But the Californians are most widely raised for their fur value and meat production. The breed was not popular immediately after their development, and took at least 15 years to become popular.
Today, Californians are the most common and widely raised rabbit breed in the United States. The Californian is a recognized breed by the American Rabbit Breeders Association. Review origin, history, characteristics, feeding, breeding, uses and full breed profile below.
Origin and History of Californian Rabbit
The Californian rabbit is a breed of domestic rabbit. As the name suggests, the breed originated in the United States (specifically in California). The breed was developed in the 1920s by George S. West (a rabbit breeder) who aimed to create a rabbit with a desirable combination of fur and meat qualities.
The Californian is well-known rabbit breed for its distinctive white fur with black points on its nose, ears, feet, and tail. This breed gained popularity quickly due to its attractive appearance and suitability for both meat production and as pets. Today, these rabbits are widely bred and popular throughout the world mainly for their gentle temperament and versatility.
The Californian rabbit is large in size with well rounded compact body. The color variety is usually white with spots and normally they don’t have any other color.
Californians are very similar to the Himalayan in coloration, with a white body and colored points. They have big ears, which are held erect. And have very dark brown markings (almost black) on their tail, nose, feet and ears.
Their neck is very short, and they have pink eyes. They are very muscular, full in the shoulders and as deep as it is wide in the hindquarters. Their coat is soft and silky.
Like most other rabbit breeds, the Californian does are also heavier than the bucks. On average, adult does weight up to 5.45 kg and bucks up to 4.9 kg.
Like many other domestic rabbit breeds, the Californian rabbits also have specific housing requirements for staying healthy. Although, their housing requirements are very basic and simple.
They just need a spacious and secure enclosure that protects them from predators and extreme weather conditions. The hutch or cage should be large enough for the rabbit to move around freely.
It is also important to provide a solid floor or a soft bedding material to keep their feet healthy and comfortable. And their housing system should also have good ventilation system to prevent the buildup of ammonia from urine and to maintain a healthy environment.
Clean their house on a regular basis to prevent the buildup of waste and bacteria. And also provide enrichment such as toys, tunnels, and hiding spots. Doing this can help to keep the Californian rabbits mentally stimulated and happy.
Feeding the rabbits with nutritious and good quality food is the most important part of rabbit farming business. Good food helps to keep the animals healthy and happy, and as a result they grow well and produce more.
So, try to feed your rabbits with good quality and nutritious food. Green leafy vegetables, seasonal vegetable, spinach, carrots, muller, cucumber, green grass and vegetable wastes are common food of rabbits. For commercial purpose, you can serve them poultry feed.
Nowadays, commercial ready-made feed is also available in the market for the rabbits. You can also feed your rabbits with this commercial feeds. Also provide your rabbits with enough clean and fresh drinking water as per their demand.
Rabbits are naturally very good breeders, and they will breed easily without human intervention. The gestation period of rabbits is about 28 to 31 days. And each time a doe can give birth of 2 to 8 kids or even more.
Californian rabbits are known for their gentle behavior and relatively friendly temperament. They are generally calm and sociable animals. And they are suitable as pets for families and individuals. They generally enjoy human interaction and can form strong bonds with their owners.
Like other rabbit breeds, they are also curious creatures and they often enjoy exploring their surroundings. These rabbits are also known for their intelligence and can be trained to raise as good pets.
However, like all rabbits, they have their own personalities. So, individual behavior may vary. Try to provide them plenty of enrichment, such as toys and tunnels. And doing this can help to keep them mentally stimulated and prevent boredom.
Keeping your rabbits healthy and active is very important. And doing this requires attention to their diet, environment, and regular veterinary care. Try to provide them a balanced diet consisting of hay, fresh vegetables, and commercial rabbit pellets. Doing all these is essential for good health of your animals.
It is also important to monitor their weight on a regular basis, and always provide them with enough clean and fresh water. Regular exercise is also vital to prevent obesity and keep their muscles and digestive system healthy.
Always try to maintain a clean living environment for your rabbits. A clean environment helps to prevent common health issues (such as gastrointestinal problems and respiratory infections). Perform regular vet check-ups to monitor for any signs of illness or disease. And vaccinate your rabbits timely.
Taking good care of the rabbits is very important for commercial rabbit farming business. So, always try to take good care of your animals. And take special care to the breeding male and pregnant and nursing moms. Monitor their health regularly, and always try to keep good contact with a vet in your area.
Average lifespan of Californian rabbits ranges from 5 to 10 years. Although their exact lifespan depends on numerous factors such as genetics, diet, environment, and veterinary care.
Popularity and Price
Californian rabbits are very popular in it’s native area, and many other parts throughout the world. They are highly popular mainly for their attractive appearance and gentle temperament.
It’s very tough for us to tell the exact price. Because exact price of the Californian rabbits can vary depending on numerous factors such as age, pedigree, and location. Generally, pet-quality Californian rabbits can range from $20 to $50. On the other hand, show-quality rabbits with desirable traits may be more expensive (ranging from $50 to $100 or more).
Today the Californian rabbit is mainly raised for their fur value and also for meat production. It is a very suitable breed for commercial production. People also raise them as show rabbit and also as pets.
Pros and Cons of Californian Rabbit
Like many other domestic rabbit breeds, these rabbits also have some pros and cons. Here we are trying to list the most common and notable pros and cons of raising Californian rabbits:
- Gentle temperament
- Attractive appearance
- Dual-purpose breed
- Easy to care for
- Sociable animals
- Health concerns
- Space requirements
- Chewing behavior
- Time commitment
The Californian rabbit is an wonderful breed with very beautiful appearance. They are also wonderful as pets and have a very nice and easy-going temperament. They are very good natured animal, calm and friendly. They are very active and playful, enjoy playing and exploring.
The Californian does are good mothers and they produce large litters of 8-12 kits. Although they were developed for the purpose of showing or raising as pets. But today they are mainly raised for fur and meat production. Review full breed profile of this breed in the chart below.
|Also known as the California White
|Dual purpose. Raised for meat and fur production. Also raised as pets.
|On average, adult does weight up to 5.45 kg and bucks up to 4.9 kg.
|Suitable for Commercial Production
|Good as Pets
|Country of Origin
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
The Californian is a very beautiful and good breed of rabbit which is raised mainly for fur and meat production purposes. Popularity of this beautiful and fantastic rabbit breed is increasing gradually, and that’s why many people are asking numerous questions about these animals. However, here we are trying to list the most common questions about this breed of domestic rabbits, and trying to answer them. Hope you will find your answer. Don’t hesitate to ask us if you have more questions.
Is commercial Californian rabbit farming profitable?
Yes, commercial production of these rabbits is highly profitable. You will be able to make good profits if you start your rabbit farming business with this breed. It is good and used for both fur and meat production purposes.
How to start Californian rabbit farming business?
Starting commercial rabbit production business with Californian breed is relatively easy. You just have to make a good house for your rabbits, feed them good quality foods, keep good ratio of males and females and always try to take good care of them.
Are Californian breed of rabbit good as pets?
Yes, these rabbits are excellent as a family pet and also good as show rabbits.
How much does a Californian rabbit cost?
Average price of a Californian rabbit is around $40 to $50. Although, exact price can vary from place to place and can even reach hundreds of dollars.
What is the life expectancy of a Californian rabbit?
Average lifespan of a Californian rabbit is 5 to 6 years.
How high can a Californian rabbit jump?
Generally, a Californian breed of rabbit can jump over 3 feet high.
Do Californian rabbits like to be held?
Yes, these rabbits are very good as pets and most will enjoy human company and also some gentle handling.
How big of a cage does a Californian rabbit need?
Generally, a Californian will need at least 4 times larger cage than their body size.
Can Californian rabbits swim?
Yes, a Californian can swim to some extent.
Why do Californian rabbits change color?
Like many other rabbit breeds, the Californians also molt every 3 months. This is a natural process mainly for maintaining appropriate body temperature. A rabbit’s fur may also change color for it’s protection.
Do all Californian rabbits have red eyes?
Yes, all rabbits of this breed always have red eyes.
How much should I feed my Californian rabbit?
Actually, exact amount of food depends on numerous factors such as age, weight and size of the rabbits. Consult with an expert or a vet in your area for more information.
How big is a Californian rabbit?
On average, adult does weight up to 5.45 kg and bucks up to 4.9 kg.
How long does it take for a Californian rabbit to give birth?
The length of pregnancy in the rabbit is 31 days and the doe can produce from 1 to 12 young each time she gives birth. She can become pregnant again within a few days of giving birth.
What colors do Californian rabbits come in?
The Californians are easily distinguished by their coloring. They generally have a white body with black points (the legs, nose and ears).