How Long Do Rabbits Live?
Do rabbits live for? This is a common question among pet owners. The rabbit species can be found in two distinctly different types, the long-lived White Lechwe and the short-lived Capybara. These two rabbits have very different life expectancies. The answer to the question, how long do rabbits live, is more complicated than you might think.
Long-lived White Lechwe rabbits can be expected to live up to three years and as long as ten. They are small, roughly one inch in length, and weigh around three to four ounces. They are very active and are capable of running at speeds of up to fifteen miles per hour.
Rabbits in the White category can be expected to reach maturity in their second year of life. At this point, they are physically mature but not fully developed emotionally or mentally. For a rabbit to achieve this full physical and mental development, it needs to experience sexual maturity.
Sexual maturity for these rabbits occurs at an age of two to three months after birth. If a mother has not been artificially inseminated during her pregnancy, then she will carry her litter to term, where the younger rabbits will be born before the older ones.
Capybara rabbits have the longest lifespan of any of the rabbit breeds. They can typically be expected to live eight to ten years, but this can vary depending upon the breed and whether or not a breeder has access to healthy young rabbits in their breeding efforts.
These rabbits are large, about one to two inches in length, weighing up to eight pounds. They have white fur and dark eyes. Their ears are tipped, so they may be mistaken for night rabbits at times.
Average lifespan of capybar rabbits is about seven years, but it can be longer or shorter based upon the breed, age and health of the rabbit. The best guess would be eight to ten years.
Hybrids, or mixtures of two breeds of rabbits, tend to have longer lifespans because of factors such as the mixing of male and female genes, or genetics, or because the dam or sire carries the maternal bloodline, thus increasing the likelihood of producing a long-lived rabbit. These longer lived hybrid rabbits tend to be less susceptible to diseases and parasites than purebreds.
Aberyside rabbits have a lifespan that is somewhere between four and five years. This is a very long span for a pet, but it can be somewhat more difficult to care for, as well. Rabbits live in burrows called warrens, but they can also be found in cages at the pet store. As with capybara and hyenas, the females tend to have longer lifespans.
The Oriental breeds of rabbits have the shortest lifespan of any known breed. While they live up to ten years on the outside, they only live three to four years inside the cage. They are easily stressed out, and their bones and organs will not recover if they get stuck in a wire mesh. Their coats can become tangled in wire mesh, which can lead to overheating.
Knowing how long do rabbits live, or how much longer they can live, depends largely on the owner. Some people love to keep rabbits as pets, while others barely allow them to be fed or use them as house pets. Breeders who are consistent in caring for their rabbits will help them live longer.
Those who allow their rabbits to go outdoors may see them shorten their lifespan, but those who give their rabbits the most attention in the cage will see them enjoy a long lifespan.