Selecting a Good Hopping or Agility Rabbit
There are 47 recognized breeds of rabbits. Not every rabbit is a good candidate for rabbit hopping or agility. A good hopping rabbit is energetic and willing to please. It is important to note that rabbit hopping and agility is a relationship between a rabbit and his or her handler.
- English Lops have very long ears and a long backbone. They are not a good candidate because their ears may knock over the jump and they are more prone to back injuries.
- Giant breeds such as Flemish Giant and French Lop have a lot more mass to get up and over the jump. Their temperament is generally not energetic enough to do well at hopping or agility.
- Himalayans have a long backbone and may be prone to injury. They are more suitable for rabbit agility, as the jumps are generally lower.
- Belgian Hares have fine bones on their front legs. They may be used for hopping and agility but should not be hopped at extremely high heights.
- Angora breeds are likely to get their wool caught in the harness and may get dirty if hopped on some surfaces. It is also difficult to fit the harness properly on an Angora because of the bulk of the wool.
* American Sable * Britannia Petite * Checkered Giant
* Standard Chinchilla * Cinnamon * Dutch
* Dwarf Hotot * English Spot * Florida White
* Harlequin * Havana * Holland Lop
* Lilac * Mini Rex * Netherland Dwarf
* Polish * Rex * Rhinelander
* Mini Satin * Satin * Silver
* Silver Fox * Silver Marten * Tan
* Thrianta *Lion Head
Not all rabbits enjoy jumping, it is up to you to let your bunny decide if they enjoy it or not. If they are happy to hop over the hurdles when you are with them, then this is a sign that they enjoy it, they may even binky over them!If not they will be very stubborn and just sit there. Never get cross with your rabbit if they are like this, they don't want to do it and you should never force them. Maybe they are just happy getting exercise by running around freely in the garden. If so, let them be, but if they do enjoy hopping, then in addition to playing in the run or having supervised free range exercise, let them have a go at rabbit jumping too.
1) Hopping and agility competitions should take place on a level, shock absorbent surface. Foam Mats or carpeting are ideal, but dirt, sand or sawdust are also acceptable. If hopping or agility is done on grass it must be free of pesticides.
2) All jumps must have displaceable bars that fall free if hit by the rabbit from either direction.
3) All jumps and obstacles must be painted with all-weather non-toxic water based paint. Jump bars should have stripes painted or taped on them to allow the rabbits to view the height and width of the obstacle. Colored vinyl or electrical tape is acceptable.
4) The use of a fully fenced area is encouraged, but not required. If no fence is used, the hopping or agility arena must be in an escape free area, such as a building. The catalog must state what type of enclosure (fence or building) will be at the event and must state if the event will occur indoors or outdoors.
5) The hosts of the event should have adequate cleaning and disinfecting supplies for soiled equipment.
6) H style harnesses and leashes are required for all rabbit hopping or agility events. Leashes should be made of a similar webbing material as the harness and should be 4’-6’ in length. Retractable, chain and rope leashes are not permitted. Leashes may be optional for rabbit agility events, provided the event takes place in a secure area.
7) Leashes and harnesses not meeting safety standards for rabbits will not be allowed to be used on a rabbit in the competition or warm-up area.
8) A warm-up area should be provided with a maximum of 2 jumps that are a maximum of 10” high. This area should be supervised.
9) Equipment must be cleaned as needed between competitions and events.
The following obstacles are used for rabbit agility:
(The long and high jumps are separate classes for rabbit hopping. Either a long jump or a high jump is the only jump on the hopping course at one time.
(See Rabbit Hopping Games section for more information).
sections that connect together for ease in transport. The first rail is to be 4” from the ground. Rails are placed at 4” intervals for the first 3’, and then 2” intervals thereafter. It is suggested to make the long jump 6’ in length. The last rail (at the 6’ length) is to be 6” from the ground.
except it is made taller. The height may be up to 40” tall. The base for the high jump needs to be
larger than the vertical to jump in order to make it stable. All rails must be able to be displaced from
either side if a rabbit doesn’t make it over the jump. Rails may be made out of the same material as
the rails for the vertical jumps, but need to be 36” wide. A mark may be placed on the jump at the
12” starting point.
High Jump: The high jump is the only jump on the course. The lowest initial height for a high jump is 12”. The start location for the handler and the rabbit is to be 9’ from the jump and the handler and rabbit must remain at this point until the judge indicates that they are ready. Competitors may choose which direction they attempt the high jump. Leashes are not required for this course. The rabbit is allowed 3 attempts, immediately following one another, at each height. After successful completion of a height, another jump rail is added. All bars are counted in scoring upset faults. If a handler upsets an obstacle after the rabbit’s clears it and lands with all four feet on the ground, the jump is counted as successful. The winner is the rabbit that is able to successfully complete the jump at the highest setting.
Long Jump: The long jump is the only jump on the course. Leashes are not required for this course. The shortest initial length is 24”. The long jump is very similar to the high jump, with 3 attempts allowed at each length. The rabbit that is able to jump the longest distance is declared the winner.
Duel Hopping: 2 rabbits and 2 handlers will complete side by side courses at the same time. The scoring shall be the total score of the two animals combined. 8 obstacles, not to include a start and finish jump. The minimum jump height is 4” and the maximum jump height 10”.
Scoring for duel hopping is to be the combined faults of both rabbits. In the case of a tie the faster duel wins. Time is started when the first rabbit crosses over the start jump and ended when the last rabbit touches all four feet on the ground after the finish jump.
Team Relay: a team of 3 rabbits and 3 handlers will complete a course one after the other. The
first rabbit must touch all four feet on the ground after clearing the final jump before the next one
starts. The scoring shall be the combined score of all three animals, and the winning team shall be the one with the fewest faults. In the case of a tie, the team with the faster time wins. The minimum jump height is 4” and the maximum jump height is 10”.
For More information on Scoring for Rabbit Hopping and Agility Classes please look in ours files section.