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Miniature Lion Lop Rabbit: Facts, Care, Diet, Pictures & More

Rachel Giordano

By Rachel Giordano

miniature lion lop in santa hat

The Miniature Lion Lop is a fun, playful rabbit with lots of hair. They make excellent little companions and are of small size but muscular and robust, plus are intelligent, friendly, affectionate, and downright adorable! These little animals love to explore and have an even temperament. If you’re looking to own a rabbit for the first time, the Mini Lion Lop is worth looking into.

Read on to learn more about these fascinating little rabbits so you can determine if one may be suitable for you and your family.

Size: Miniature
Weight: 3.5 pounds
Lifespan: 10 – 14 years
Similar Breeds: Holland Lop, Miniature Lop, French Lop, Dwarf Lop, American Fuzzy Lop, Mini Plush Lop, Miniature Cashmere Lop, Lionhead rabbit
Suitable for: Those desiring a small rabbit breed, families with other rabbits and cats, first-time rabbit owners
Temperament: Friendly, social, active, even-tempered

The Miniature Lion Lop is a fairly new rabbit breed developed in the United Kingdom during the early 2000s by rabbit breeder Jane Bramely. She combined the Lionhead rabbit and the Mini Lop to create these adorable rabbits with unique features, such as the lovely long mane that covers the face and head.

The long mane of hair comes from a dominant gene of the Lionhead rabbit. These rabbits are friendly and love human interaction. They are suitable for the first-time rabbit owner, and they can become friends with cats. Even though these rabbits are small, their little bodies are strong, chiseled, broad, and short.

The British Rabbit Council officially recognized the breed in 2006; however, the American Rabbit Breeders Association (ARBA) has yet to recognize the breed despite them being transported to the United States since the early 2000s.

Miniature Lion Lop Characteristics

Energy
Trainability
Health
Lifespan
Sociability

divider_rabbit_carrotsHow Much Do These Rabbits Cost?

Given these rabbits are a newer breed, the price for one can be quite high; however, the price varies in the U.S. from state to state, with prices ranging from $30 to $200. In the United Kingdom, which is their place of origin, the prices range from €30 to €100.

Before committing to owning one of these fluffy little guys, you should consider other costs that will come into play. For example, these rabbits have a long mane of hair that will need grooming. With exotic pet insurance and other monthly health expenses, the average cost of owning a Miniature Lion Lop is roughly $25 per month.


Temperament & Intelligence of the Miniature Lion Lop Rabbit

The Miniature Lion Lop is even-tempered, intelligent, and loves human interaction. They are friendly, sociable, and active, and love roaming around and playing with toys. They pair well with other rabbits, particularly other Mini Lion Lops—you may even see a pair of Mini Lion Lops grooming each other. They are also known to get along with cats. They tend to have high energy in the mornings and late evenings, and they love to explore.

Do These Rabbits Make Good Pets? 👪

Yes! These fluffily little bundles of joy make excellent pets and are extremely sociable, friendly, and intelligent. The Mini Lion Lop loves being around humans and receiving plenty of attention, and they are quite the little explorers. They also love to entertain themselves by playing with noisy cat toys and boxes.

You can have them live indoors or outdoors; however, if the living quarters are outdoors, ensure your Mini Lion Lop has plenty of room in the hutch to roam around. The hutch should be big enough so it can stand up on the hind legs, hop around, and turn around comfortably—it should also be weather-proof and water-resistant. These rabbits do require free-range exercise to suit their exploring traits.

Does This Rabbit Get Along With Other Pets?

As mentioned, they get along well with cats as long as a cat is friendly, gentle, and wants to befriend the Mini Lion Lop. These rabbits are curious, and given their even temperament, they are accepting of most other pets as long as the other pets are friendly. However, it may take time, training, and patience for the rabbit to trust other pets, especially dogs. They particularly love having fellow bunny mates and will often groom each other.

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Things to Know When Owning a Miniature Lion Lop

Food & Diet Requirements 🥕

Your Mini Lion Lop will require a diet that consists of mostly high-quality hays, such as Timothy hay, orchid grass, or oat hay, plus high-quality rabbit pellets and a variety of rabbit-safe fruits and veggies. Raw foods are an essential component in their daily nutrition and should make up 75% of the daily diet. Dark, leafy greens, such as spinach, kale, romaine lettuce, and spring greens, are excellent choices. You should also incorporate 25% vegetables into their diet such as summer squash, cauliflower, bell pepper, and broccoli. You can give them the occasional strawberry, banana, or apple for fruits, but avoid apple seeds and the stem. Lastly, provide fresh water 24/7.

Habitat & Hutch Requirements 🏠

We’ve discussed how much the Mini Lion Lop likes to explore, so they need plenty of room to do it. Despite their small size, these rabbits need an expansive space to play and exercise. That said, look for an enclosure built specifically for rabbits with dimensions of 3–4 feet wide, 2 feet deep, and 3 feet high.

For outdoor cages, ensure you keep them in a shaded area or at least out of direct sunlight and wind. It’s also crucial to keep the enclosure safe from predators.

Exercise & Sleeping Needs 🐇

Typically, rabbits require roughly 8 hours of sleep per day. Ensure you place a board on the surface of the cage floor to keep your rabbit’s paws from going through the bottom, and place rabbit-appropriate grass and covers for comfort. Only buy your hay and grass from trusted sources, and avoid cedar or pine wood bedding because they are hazardous to your rabbit’s health.

The Mini Lion Lop is typically active in the early mornings and evenings. Your rabbit will be happy to engage in play with you during this time, and they love noisy toys. As for exercise, ensure you allow your rabbit to have plenty of room and space to roam and explore. It’s important to note that you should never pick your rabbit up by the ears. The ears are delicate, and doing so will cause a great deal of harm and discomfort.

Training 🥎

Rabbits are intelligent and are capable of being trained. Food and favorite toys are excellent motivators to use for training, but don’t force your rabbit. Rabbits are prey animals and can be easily frightened, so understanding your rabbit’s behaviors is crucial in successful training. If your rabbit is frightened, give it space and try again later.

Training a rabbit takes time and patience, but it can be done. With persistence, a Mini Lion Lop can learn to jump on your lap, fetch, spin, and even give you a high-five, to name a few. You can also train these rabbits to come when called.

Grooming ✂️

The Mini Lion Lop has a dense coat of medium length with a lot of guard hairs. The mane can reach 2–3 inches long and requires weekly brushings with a wide-toothed comb to keep it from matting. During molting, the Mini Lion Lop will require daily brushings.

You can always take your rabbit to a groomer to take care of all your Mini Lion Lop’s grooming needs. A groomer will trim the nails, check the teeth, ears, and eyes, provide scent gland cleaning, clean the genital area, and check the coat for mats.

Lifespan and Health Conditions 🏥

Like any animal, the Mini Lion Lop can develop health conditions. They have a relatively long life span of 10–14 years, but you must take care of them properly to keep infections and other issues at bay. Let’s take a look at particular conditions to watch for.

Minor Conditions
  • Ear abscesses
  • Hairballs
  • Pasteurellosis
Serious Conditions
  • Dental disease

Minor Conditions

  • Ear abscesses: Lop-eared rabbits are prone to ear abscesses due to bacterial infections. You should check the base of the ears for signs of dirt collection, swelling, or pus. If you notice any of these signs, take your rabbit to the vet immediately for treatment.
  • Hairballs: Rabbits can swallow hairballs while self-grooming. Hairballs can get lodged in the gut if your rabbit does not have enough fiber in its diet.
  • Pasteurellosis: This bacterium, also known as Pasteurella multocida, is highly contagious and can spread from an infected rabbit. It is common in domestic rabbits, and it can affect the nose and eyes, producing a discharge. It can also affect the ears and cause uterine infections.

Serious Conditions

  • Dental disease: These rabbits are genetically prone to dental disease, making dental hygiene a top priority. A rabbit’s teeth can become overgrown, so ensure you check the teeth often.

Male vs. Female

Males tend to be less destructive and less territorial. Males also have a calmer temperament than females, but they may be prone to spraying—however, neutering can curb this behavior. Females may also spray, but spaying helps to cut down on this behavior as well. These rabbits make excellent pets regardless of gender, but if you want a more laid-back rabbit, a male will be a better option for you.

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The 3 Little-Known Facts About the Miniature Lion Lop

1. They Come in Many Colors

The Mini Lion Lop comes in a variety of colors that are recognized as breed standards within the British Rabbit Council. The colors include white, black, blue, grey, beige, chocolate, seal point, blue point, smoke, sable, orange, and fawn.


2. Females Reach Sexual Maturity at 4–5 Months of Age.

On the other hand, males may take a little longer to reach sexual maturity, averaging 6–7 months to reach an adult sperm count.


3. The Mane Looks Like a “V.”

The Mini Lion Lop gets its long mane from the Lionhead rabbit, and it looks like the shape of a “V” along the back of the neck while falling over the head and between the ears—some rabbits can even be double-maned.

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Final Thoughts

The Miniature Lion Lop rabbit is an excellent pet to own. They do require more grooming compared to other rabbits, but they are fun, lively, and love attention from their humans. They are intelligent enough to train, and they love to explore. Ensure you handle them gently, and never pick them up by the ears.

These rabbits can live up to 12 to 14 years with proper care. Ensure you keep all vaccinations up-to-date, keep them groomed to prevent matting, and feed an appropriate diet of high-quality hay, high-quality rabbit pellets, and safe veggies with the occasional fruit as a treat. Give your Mini Lion Lop lots of love, and you’ll be rewarded with an excellent companion.

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Featured Image Credit: Valentina Razumova, Shutterstock

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