THE ANGORA RABBIT
The exhibition angora is a work of art and differs from the mongrel long hair (e.g the woolly) in having longer, softer hair.
The angora is one of the oldest breed of rabbit, being mentioned as early as 1881, and although its place of origin is uncertain, it is generally considered to have been in England that it first appeared as a mutation and its potential recognised and bred for.
It was most probably named after the mohair producing Angora goat. By the mid 19th century it rapidly gained recognition as a Fancy rabbit and was regularly exhibited, its popularity steadily increasing over the years.
These early specimens are nothing like the present day exhibition angora. For they were totally devoid of furnishings (the tufts on the ears, head, crest, cheeks and feet indeed they were only identifiable by the long coat factor.
The breeders of the 1920's and 1930's strove to improve the breed until today, for sheer beauty, there is nothing to compare with a full-coated exhibition angora.
Today the angora is a medium-sized rabbit with an average weight of 6-8 lbs. It is not generally realised that angoras can be other than white (albino), which is the most common. In fact there are 13 recognised colours in the club standard, though some of the colours are now rare and few have even dropped out of circulation.
The colours are;
Lilac is available but is not yet on the national standard.
The wool grows approximately 1" a month and is harvested four times a year by clipping every thee months, or plucking when the wool is ripe and ready to come away. The exhibition angora needs to be given skilful grooming to make it ready to be shown.