Native Country United States of America Other Names N/A
ARBA Registry Accepted:
BRC Registry Accepted:
Breed Appearance The American Chinchilla or "Heavyweight
Chinchilla" is larger than the Standard Chinchilla but otherwise
identical. Standard Chinchillas bred for large size produced this
breed. Chinchilla Rabbits originated in France and were bred to
standard by M. J. Dybowski. They were introduced to the United
States in 1919.
Bred to be a meat rabbit, the American Chinchilla Rabbit
is a stocky, hardy pet. American Chinchilla Rabbits do not require
regular grooming. Adult American Chinchilla Rabbits weigh
differentlt for each sex. Males (Bucks)- 9-11#, and Females (Does)
10-12#. These stocky rabbits have a slight curve to their medium
length bodies, beginning at the nape of their necks and following
through to the rump. They carry their ears straight erect. In show,
type is judged to be more important than color. American Chinchilla
Rabbits are a six-class breed in show. (Any rabbit that matures over
9 pounds is a 6-class breed, maturation weights under 9# are 4-class
breeds.) The American Chinchilla Rabbit was bred from large Standard
Chinchilla Rabbits in order to produce a meatier rabbit. They were
originally called Heavyweight Chinchilla Rabbits.
Breed Description - ARBA Standard Body: The body is to be medium length,
with well-rounded hips, and well filled loin and ribs. Shoulders are
to be well developed and in proportion to the rib spread and hips.
There should be a slight taper from hips to the shoulders, with more
length in does than bucks. The back is to form a gradual arc,
beginning at the base of the ears, carried to a high point at the
middle of the hips, and continuing down to the base of the tail.
Medium size dewlap is permissible in does. Hear & Ears: The head is to be medium full from base of ears
to muzzle, with well filled face and jaws. The neck is to be short.
Ears are to be in proportion to head and body, carried erect, and
close together. Ears are to be evenly ticked and match body color.
Upper tip of ears are to show a distinct narrow, jet black lacing of
approximately 1/16 inch. Eyes: Eyes are to be large, bright, and bold, with an alert
expression. Feet & Legs: Feet and legs are to be straight, with medium
bone. The front feet and the outside of the upper part of the hind
legs are to be ticked with a uniform shade of gray, matching body
color as nearly as possible. Color is to run down the thighs to a
narrow strip on the outside of the hind feet. Fur: Fur on the body is to be 1 1/8 to 1 3/8 inches in
length. Ideal length to be 1 ¼ (A longer or shorter fur with density
preferred over standard length lacking density). Fur is to be very
dense, of fine texture, and with a gentle rollback. Fur is to be
bright smooth, glossy, and free from molt or hutch stain. Color: Color is to resemble real Chinchilla. The under color
is to be dark slate blue at the base; intermediate portion of pearl
to be as light as possible, with the top edge being a very narrow
black band (base definitely wider than the intermediate portion);
above this is a very light band, brightly ticked with wavy jet black
hairs to resemble the beautiful Chinchilla surface color. Neck fur
is to be lighter in color than the body, but strictly confined to
the nape. The chest is to be lightly ticked with a uniform shade of
pearl, slightly lighter than the body. The body color is to extend
as far down the sides as possible. Belly color, next to the skin, is
to be white or blue. Surface color is to be white. Eye circles are
to be well defined, narrow and light pearl. Tail underside is to be
white. Topside of tail is to be black, interspersed with white
hairs. Eye color-Brown, blue-gray, or Marbled. Dark brown preferred.
History Selective breeding of rabbits began in the
Middle Ages, when they were first treated as domesticated farm
animals. By the 16th century, several new breeds of different colors
and sizes were being recorded. In the 19th century, as animal fancy
in general began to emerge, rabbit fanciers began to sponsor rabbit
exhibitions and fairs in Western Europe and the United States.
Breeds were created and modified for the added purpose of
exhibition, a departure from the breeds that had been created solely
for food, fur, or wool. The rabbit's emergence as a household pet
began during the Victorian era.
Domestic Rabbits have
been popular in the United States since the late 19th century. The
American Rabbit Breeders Association (ARBA) was founded in 1910 and
is the national authority on rabbit raising and rabbit breeds having
a uniform Standard of Perfection, registration and judging system.
The domestic rabbit continues to be popular as a show animal and
pet. Many thousand rabbit shows occur each year and are sanctioned
in Canada and the United States by the ARBA. Today, the domesticated
rabbit is the third most popular mammalian pet in Britain after dogs
Behavior Rabbits can make good pets for younger children
when proper parental supervision is provided. As prey animals,
rabbits are alert, timid creatures that startle fairly easily. They
have fragile bones, especially in their backs, that require support
on the belly and bottom when picked up. Older children and teenagers
usually have the maturity required to care for a rabbit. Rabbits may
grunt, lunge and even bite or scratch. Usually they do not bite hard
enough to break skin. Rabbits become aggressive when they feel
threatened or are cornered.