The Belgian Hare is a fancy domesticated rabbit that has come about through selective breeding. Like a wild hare, Belgian Hares are beautiful while still being clever and sometimes skittish. Because of their attractive look and intelligence, the Belgian Hare is a popular pet. Just as with any other pet, Belgian Hares require special attention and care. If you are thinking about getting a Belgian Hare, read on. This guide tells you everything you need to know about this rabbit breed
Belgian Hares unsurprisingly originated in Belgian in the early 18th century. The breed was developed by crossing wild rabbits with domestic rabbits to create a practical meat rabbit. The Belgian hare made its way to England in 1874 where the breed was developed by a Mr Lumb to be more spirited and lively like the English wild rabbit. By 1887 the UK Belgian Hare speciality club was formed and the breed was growing in popularity particularly in America. In the 1920s the popularity of the breed dwindled. Many tried to breed this rabbit for meat even though physically it was unsuitable. This diluted the breed so it was rare to find a purebred Belgian, perhaps causing the lack of interest. The Belgian hare is a large rabbit that is slender with long legs. They are a rich chestnut colour with large bright hazel eyes.
One thing that sets the Belgian Hare apart from other rabbits breed is its unique appearance. Although this animal certainly is a rabbit, it is bred to look like a hare, even down to its coat. It is generally considered to be a large rabbit breed, often weighing 7 to 8 pounds. A Belgian Hare typically has a slender and fine-boned body, complete with agile and strong legs. Its forefeet are straight and flat, but the hind feet and arched back are relatively prominent due to the rounded hindquarter. Because of its hare-like look, the Belgian Hare is considered the racehorse of rabbits. As for their face, Belgian Hares typically have heads that are much longer than other rabbits, complete with large and straight ears. This allows them to have a much more distinct look even in the face.
Belgian Hares look like wild hares in more than just their body design. They also have coats that are more similar to a hare than that of a rabbit. They can come in a variety of colors, with black ticking on the coat. Most Belgian Hares will have black, red, tan, chestnut, and black and tan coats.
Belgian Hare Rabbit
All climates; avoid extremely high humidity or heat
Active, intelligent, and nervous
7 to 7 years
Large (6 to 9 lbs.)
Water, 70% hay and 30% vegetables, fruits, and pellets
Minimum Enclosure Size:
24 x 60 x 24 in.
Outdoor enclosure, complete with nesting, litter box, and eating area
Compatible for homes with large outdoor enclosures; not suitable for apartments, small homes, or indoor captivity