Bunny Care Guide: Short Haired Rabbits vs Long Haired Rabbits
There is a lot to take into consideration when getting any new pet, and that includes buying a bunny. Other sections of this guide deal with what sort of size might be best for you, but size is not the only consideration that one has.
A major consideration is coat length. There are many bunny breeds with short, easy care coats that will only need a brushing every once in a while, and even then, the brushing will probably be more for fun that any real need, though it is nice to remove the loose hair and stimulate the skin.
A long haired bunny is a completely different consideration however. There are many kinds of long haired bunnies, but they all share one thing in common: an almost endless need for grooming. Most of these rabbits will need daily grooming in order to look good and stay healthy.
This is not an exaggeration. Without daily care, a long haired rabbit's coat can quickly become matted and tangled. If this occurs, then it is best to cut the mats and tangles out rather than try to brush them free. Bunnies have pretty sensitive skin, and tugging and pulling at the hair can really hurt them.
Long haired bunnies can also have problems with night droppings (the soft fecal matter) attaching itself to the coat. This can occur if the bunny has an upset tummy, change of location or food, and can be quite messy and nasty. Some long haired bunny owners trim the hair around the anal region, but it can still be an issue, and is something that has to be monitored. The same can happen with short haired bunnies of course, but in their cases it is often a lot more obvious, and a lot easier to clean up.
Long haired rabbits may also have additional issues with hairballs due to the longer, fluffier nature of their fur. Some rabbit seems to be almost constantly moulting, which means you will almost always be brushing out the fine downy fur that sticks to everything, is hard to get off carpets, and catches the wind to merrily travel to other parts of your home or garden.
In short, a long haired bunny may be pretty, but do not underestimate the work it takes to maintain the bunny. Just a few days of neglect can turn into an unholy mess. Do you have time to spend half an hour or so daily, carefully grooming your bunny and looking for mats and tangled knots in the fur, and possibly even cleaning up a mess when the bunny has an upset tummy? If not, then a long haired rabbit is probably not the best choice for you.
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