Undertake-a-Pet.com Weblog Bunny VS. Rabbit: What’s the Distinction?

By Adrienne A. Kruzer, BBA, RVT, LVT
rabbit and bunny being held by man and woman
Cottonbro studio / Pexels
If you happen to’re questioning what the distinction between a bunny and a rabbit is, you’re not alone. Do these phrases imply the identical factor, or is one solely applicable for a sure age or sort of animal? Discover out if there’s a distinction and, if that’s the case, what that distinction is, so you need to use the correct terminology when referring to your fluffy pet.

Are Bunnies and Rabbits Completely different?

There isn’t any distinction between bunnies and rabbits — the phrase “bunny” is simply one other phrase for rabbit. The principle distinction between using the phrase bunny versus rabbit is that many individuals describe small or child rabbits as bunnies. But it surely’s additionally not mistaken to name bigger or grownup rabbits “bunnies” — and lots of rabbit house owners use the phrase as a time period of endearment for his or her mature rabbits. It’s value noting that “bunny” is a time period used for each domesticated and wild rabbits.

Bunny vs. Rabbit vs. Hare

So, if bunnies and rabbits are the identical, what units them other than hares? Let’s soar into what makes a rabbit a real rabbit.

What’s a Rabbit?

A rabbit is a furry mammal with lengthy ears, highly effective hind legs, and a fluffy tail that appears like a cotton ball. There are each domesticated and wild rabbits. Domesticated rabbit breeds are present in houses the world over as pets in addition to on farms the place they’re raised for meals. The American Rabbit Breeders Affiliation (ARBA) has acknowledged 49 different breeds of home rabbits. “Oryctolagus cuniculus” is the Latin species title for all domesticated rabbits, no matter their breed. They’re a part of the order “Lagomorpha” and the household “Leporidae” however are usually not the identical as hares or wild rabbits.

Rabbits can reside a mean of eight years, however their lifespans fluctuate enormously. One pet rabbit is even recorded to have lived to be 18 years previous, however most reside to be between 5 and 10 years. Rabbits could also be known as bunnies their whole lives.

What’s a Hare?

Hares and wild rabbits are a part of the identical order and household as home rabbits however have completely different genera. There are two varieties of untamed rabbits: Cottontail rabbits and Pygmy rabbits. Wild Cottontail rabbits are a part of the genus “Sylvilagus,” and wild Pygmy rabbits are a part of the genus “Brachylagus.” Lastly, hares, also called “jackrabbits,” are a part of the genus “Lepus.” Hares have longer ears than most rabbits and 48 chromosomes, whereas rabbits have 44. Wild rabbits and hares might all even be known as bunnies.

Hares usually have a lifespan of about three to five years within the wild, though some might reside longer in captivity. Elements comparable to habitat, predation, and availability of meals can affect their lifespan.

Is it Appropriate to Say Bunny?

The phrase bunny has just a few completely different meanings, one in every of which is an off-the-cuff phrase for rabbit. Whereas it’s right to name a rabbit a bunny, nevertheless, it’s not the formal phrase for animals within the “Leporidae” household. You may name a rabbit of any age a bunny and can even discuss with male rabbits as “bucks” and lady rabbits as “does.”

Different phrases which are used when referring to rabbits:

  • Coney (an previous time period for rabbit)
  • Lapin (French for rabbit)
  • Bunny rabbit (typically utilized by youngsters)

What Are Child Rabbits Known as? 

Child rabbits are typically known as bunnies, however the technical time period is “package.” The phrase is derived from the phrase “kitten,” however this longer title just isn’t generally used. When a rabbit provides start, it’s known as “kindling,” and as much as 15 kits may be born in a litter. All rabbit kits are born with out fur, and their eyes and ears are sealed shut. As they develop, bunnies develop fur and are in a position to see and listen to. At about six to eight weeks of age, a package can depart their mom and survive on their very own, so that you received’t discover a bunny on the market or adoption that’s any youthful than this.


Studies in Mammalian Spermatogenesis VI. The Chromosomes of the Rabbit

Living with wildlife: Rabbits

Department of Natural Resources: Cottontail Rabbit

Baby Bunnies Best Left in Nest

Adrienne Kruzer is an achieved veterinary technician and author with over 15 years of hands-on expertise caring for home and unique animals.

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