Everything About the Netherland Dwarf Rabbit

The Netherland Dwarf is one of the smallest rabbits, and one of the cutest because of that. They were first created by crossing Polish rabbits with small, wild rabbits, and the result was offspring of many different colors. That wide variety of color has made them a popular pet all around the world.

Netherland Dwarfs are mostly friendly and well-suited as domesticated animals or for shows

The breed can, at times, be fearful and aggressive, but careful breeding has selected the friendliest rabbits, and the Netherland Dwarfs which we have today are mostly friendly and well-suited as domesticated animals or for shows. They can be skittish at times due to their high levels of energy, and that can make them exciting pets, especially if there are children around. As long as they have enough space to run around in, they make for wonderful pets. 

Netherland Dwarf Color & Looks

Netherland Dwarfs have disproportionately large eyes, in comparison to their heads. This is one of many reasons as to why they look so cute.

When you see those large eyes staring up at you, you cannot help but fall in love with them.

The head is also large when compared to the short and stout body. The ears are short and often stick straight up, giving these bunnies an alert look. The round face finishes the cute look. Being dwarf rabbits, they have small features, giving them a permanent child-like appearance.

Netherland Dwarfs come in a wide variety of colors, making them a great choice as a pet. From the classic tones such as Ruby Eyed White, Black, and Blue to more obscure (and cool-sounding) colors like Siamese Smoke, Magpie, and Red Agouti, there is a color of Netherland Dwarf with which everyone will fall in love. 

How Do I Care For A Netherland Dwarf?

Netherland dwarfs are small rabbits, but they still need some space to run around in. The minimum recommended cage size is 24” x 18” x 14”, though it is always recommended that you go as large as possible. Invest in as large a cage as you can or combine the cage with a large run that you can let your bunny loose in.

Solid bottoms are recommended for the cage, though Netherland Dwarfs can get around on wire-bottomed cages as long as there is some padding on the wire or a place where they can move off of the wire to rest their feet.

Keep your bunny well fed and watered, and make time to play with your rabbit often. 

Litter train your bunny as soon as you can to ensure that a solid-bottomed cage does not become too soiled. Have an enclosed space where they can hide out and sleep, or a bed crafted from hay or aspen shavings. Give the cage a thorough clean at least once a week, and also remove any droppings as often as you can (you would not like to live with your own poo).

Keep the cage in an area of your home where there are no drafts or direct sunlight. This small breed of rabbit does not do well in the cold or extreme heat, so make sure to protect your rabbit as much as you can.

Netherland Dwarfs do not need a lot of grooming and will take care of most of the grooming by themselves. If they are shedding (and often when they are not), they may appreciate some help with removing their excess fur. Using a soft comb or brush will help to remove the excess fur. Brush in the natural direction of their coat, and use that as an opportunity to check for any parasites. You can also trim the tips of their nails when needed or take them to a vet to have it done.

Keep your bunny well fed and watered, and make time to play with your rabbit often.

How active are Netherland Dwarfs?

Netherland Dwarfs may be small but they still need as much room as most other breeds. We have already mentioned the need for a large cage, and a run for your rabbit to exercise in. We would also recommend allowing your rabbit to run around your home or a part of your home. If you are letting your bunny roam free, then ensure that you take measures to protect your bunny (and your home).

Make sure that there are no wires to be chewed, food to be gotten into, or fabric which you do not want holes in. You should always be around when you let your bunny out of their cage.

Although Netherland Dwarfs are very active, and often skittish, they may not be the best animals for children to play with. Kids will love to see them jumping and hopping around, or running as fast as they can across the floor, but Netherland Dwarfs can sometimes be aggressive and do not always like to be held. When your pet is out of their cage, let them come to you instead of you going to them.

What should I feed my Netherland Dwarf?

The main diet of a Netherland Dwarf should consist of pellets, fresh hay, water, and fresh vegetables. The amounts you feed your rabbit will mainly depend on their age. 

When Netherland Dwarfs are born, they nurse from their mother for the first three weeks. At four weeks, they can begin to nibble on alfalfa pellets or hay, and at seven weeks, water can be added in when the nursing ends. Once the digestive system of this tiny rabbit has developed, you can introduce fresh vegetables and greens.

Between four and seven months old, a Netherland Dwarf is ready to handle vegetables. Start small and introduce one kind of vegetable at a time. Organic is best. Alfalfa should be used up until the rabbit is around seven months old, at which time, you can switch over to hay.

A fully grown Netherland Dwarf should have the following amounts of food daily: 1/8 cup of pellets per pound of body weight, unlimited timothy hay, unlimited fresh water, and some fresh vegetables.

Healthcare For A Netherland Dwarf

There are some serious diseases which you may need to protect your bunny against, but you do not need to necessarily vaccinate your bunny, depending on the country you live in. We recommend talking to your vet to see if your bunny is at risk from any diseases and needs to be vaccinated. Your vet will also be able to guide you when it comes to parasite control and worming.

You should also consult your vet to check the dental health of your bunny, but there are steps which you can take to ensure that your rabbit’s teeth are in peak condition. Rabbits like to chew. They do this to control the growth of their teeth. By feeding your bunny pellets and hay, along with providing chew toys, you can help your bunny’s teeth.

Netherland Dwarfs As Pets

Netherland Dwarfs are great bunnies to keep as pets. They are inexpensive to care for, do not require a lot of maintenance and upkeep, and are energetic and lively. They are cute and appealing to both adults and kids, and love to run and hop around.

Netherland Dwarfs are great bunnies to keep as pets

This breed of bunny can be skittish at first but will warm to you with a lot of exposure. If you let them free in a run or in your home, then take the time to be in there with them, and they will soon grow to love you. We recommend petting them when they come to you, but Netherland Dwarfs can be aggressive if you pet then when they do not want to be petted or try to pick them up when they would rather be doing something else. They are well-suited to being around older kids and adults but may not be the best pet for young kids who want to interact a lot with a bunny.

Netherland Dwarfs love to chew so choose toys which they can chew on. Look for natural fibers, especially wood for them to gnaw on. Branches and sticks will be a welcome addition to their home but stay away from cedar as the aroma can aggravate them. As they are so active, toys which encourage them to burn off their energy will also help your rabbit to play. Look for balls or any other toy which can be rolled or interacted with.


Size: Small: ~2 pounds
Lifespan: 5-7 years
Temperament: Friendly
Cost: ~$50
Yearly Cost: ~$500
Level: Beginner

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