For something so adorably fluffy, rabbits come in a surprising range of sizes! From teensy Netherland Dwarfs small enough to fit in your palm, to laidback Flemish Giants bigger than some dogs, rabbit breeds span a scale of more than 20 pounds. When do these hopping pets reach their full growth potential? How big is that cuddly bunny actually going to get? What’s the size difference between a Dutch and a Mini Rex? Read on to find out when rabbits stop growing, typical adult weights by breed, and comparisons to help picture just how big – or small – your rabbit will be when full grown! Whether you live in an apartment or a farmhouse, there’s a perfect rabbit breed to suit your home.
When Do Rabbits Stop Growing?
Rabbits reach full growth between 6-12 months of age, depending on their breed and size. Smaller breeds like dwarfs and mini rex rabbits generally reach adult size by 6 months old. Medium-sized breeds like Dutch rabbits stop growing around 8-9 months of age. Larger breeds like Flemish Giants can take up to a full year to reach their maximum size.
On average, most rabbits complete the majority of their growth by 9 months old. At this age, they are considered adults in terms of development, even if they put on a little more size afterwards. Their growth plates have fused and their bone development is complete by 9 months of age.
Some clues that a rabbit has finished growing:
Reaching the average adult weight range for their breed. For example, a Netherland Dwarf usually weighs 2-2.5 lbs full grown. Once they hit 2.5 lbs, they are likely done growing taller and longer.
proportional body shape is established. Young rabbits often look very leggy, with oversized feet, ears, and limbs compared to their body. As they mature, their proportions even out into a balanced adult look.
Fur coat fills out. Baby rabbits have soft, fine fur. Their adult coat will be thicker and fuller. The change starts around 3-4 months and completes by 9 months.
Reproductive maturity. Rabbits can breed as early as 4 months old. But they reach full sexual maturity around 6-9 months old. This lines up with the timeline for their growth plates fusing and adult size being reached.
Slowing of weight gain. When a rabbit is actively growing, they may gain as much as a pound per month. As they near adult size, weight gain levels off and they put on the last few ounces slowly over several months.
Personality maturation. Though it varies by individual, most rabbits become calmer and less rambunctious after being spayed/neutered around 6 months old. Around 9 months to a year, they show their mature personality traits and activity levels.
Of course, each rabbit ages on their own schedule. Some may continue growing a bit after 9 months, filling out to the top end of the expected weight for their breed. Careful nutrition and health monitoring are especially important from 6-12 months as they put on the majority of their adult size. With proper care, rabbits can live 8-12 years, so the year it takes them to fully grow is just the start of a long and healthy life.
How Big Do Rabbits Grow?
Rabbit sizes can range tremendously, from 2 lbs to 20+ lbs depending on the breed. There are over 50 rabbit breeds recognized by the American Rabbit Breeders Association, from tiny dwarfs to giant Flemish. Some common breed size categories:
- Small breeds: 2-4 lbs full grown
Small rabbit breeds include Netherland Dwarfs, Jersey Woolies, Britannia Petite, and Holland Lops. They usually reach maximum size by 6 months old.
- Medium breeds: 5-8 lbs full grown
The most popular medium sized rabbit breeds are Mini Rex, Mini Lops, Dutch, Himalayan, and Polish. They finish growing around 8-9 months old.
- Large breeds: 9-11 lbs full grown
Large rabbits include New Zealand, Californian, Chinchilla, and American rabbits. They may continue filling out past a year old.
- Giant breeds: Over 11 lbs full grown
The biggest domestic rabbit breed is the Flemish Giant, which can weigh 13-22 lbs at maturity. French Lops are another giant breed weighing in over 13 lbs full grown.
- Commercial breeds: 9-12 lbs full grown
Rabbits raised for meat purposes are usually a medium to large size breed. Common commercial breeds like California Whites reach 11-12 lbs at slaughter weight around 12-14 weeks old.
Other factors besides breed that influence a rabbit's full grown size:
Gender – Bucks (males) are often slightly larger than does (females)
Diet – Proper nutrition supports reaching optimal genetic size.
Health – Illness or chronic issues may stunt growth.
Pedigree – Well-bred rabbits from proven bloodlines tend to better meet breed standards.
Birth weight – Heavier kits tend to grow into larger adults.
A rabbit's eventual adult size depends first on their genetics. Purebred rabbits from responsible breeders will become standard-size adults for their breed. Crossbred rabbits can be more variable in size. Providing proper care and nutrition allows each rabbit to reach their full growth potential.
Rabbit Size Comparison Chart
|Breed||Average Adult Weight|
|Netherland Dwarf||2 – 2.5 lbs|
|Holland Lop||3 – 4 lbs|
|Mini Rex||3.5 – 4.5 lbs|
|Dutch||5 – 5.5 lbs|
|Mini Lop||6 – 7 lbs|
|American||9 – 11 lbs|
|New Zealand||9 – 12 lbs|
|Flemish Giant||13 – 22 lbs|
To put those rabbit sizes into perspective, here's how they compare to more familiar objects:
A 2 lb Netherland Dwarf is about the size of a grapefruit or a medium zucchini.
A 4 lb Holland Lop is similar in size to a jug of milk or a small watermelon.
A 6 lb Mini Lop is approximately the size of a medium hubcab or a bowling ball.
An 11 lb New Zealand approaches the size of a medium-sized dog like a Corgi or Pug.
A 16 lb Flemish Giant is comparable in bulk to an average housecat or a large turkey.
The smallest domestic rabbit breed, the Columbia Basin Pygmy, averages just 1-1.5 lbs full grown – about the size of a pineapple.
On the other end of the spectrum, some exceptional Flemish Giants can weigh over 25 lbs, rivaling a mid-sized dog in heft.
Rabbits make great pets, adaptable for both urban apartments or roomy outdoor hutches. With such a range of mature sizes to choose from, there is a breed well-suited for just about any home.