American Fuzzy Lops
“Head of the Fancy”
American Fuzzy Lops were developed by Patty Greene-Karl. Many people think that Fuzzy Lops came out of Holland Lops crossed with Angora’s. Well, they really came out of “pure” Holland Lops that may have been crossed with some sort of other rabbit generations back with the fuzzy gene. Fuzzy Lops were accepted by the ARBA in 1988.
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Visit the AFL color guide for pictures & descriptions of colors
The different color groups of Fuzzy Lops are:
Note: Colors marked with * are not currently showable, some are being worked on and presented to ARBA. Also don’t confuse a Broken Fuzzy Lop (or other breed) with a dutch marked. These come out of BEW and carry the Vienna Blue-eyed gene. These are able to breed back to other BEW rabbits to get more BEW rabbits.
Current Standards for showing Fuzzy Lops:
A good Fuzzy Lop with good body type is to be short and close-coupled with well developed shoulders and hindquarters. It is supposed to be heavily muscled, smoothly rounded, well balanced with other body parts, AND within the weight limits. The rabbit should also have strong bone and thick stubby legs.
The ideal head (keep in mind a super large head may not balance well with a smaller body) should have excellent width from the top down to the muzzle. The head should appear as an even and square block, and flat faces are an excellent sign of strong bone which is ideal. The head should be set up around medium height directly on the shoulder. No neck should be apparent.
A good crown which is part of the head is best visible by looking at the ears. The ears should be short, thick and wide. If the ears have a fold in them down vertically in the middle, it means that the crown is pinching them and needs more width. Fuzzy Lops must carry their ears down (although some will hold them up when stressed, others hold them up all the time and are referred to having “air-plane” ears or poor ear carriage. The ears should balance with the body and may be longer, but the idea length is to be about 1/2 inch to 1 inch below the jawline. The ears should not have the long fur on them.
Feet and legs should be straight. When holding the rabbit on it’s back and looking at the bottoms of the feet, the feet should be straight with the toes pointing upward towards the face. Feet with toes that point outward are a sign of pinched hindquarters.
An ideal show coat (for a senior) should be slightly coarse, thick and even all over the body with guard hairs (with the exception of the ears.) Softer coats are expected in the juniors, they should be clean, unstained and free of knots. Length of wool should be at least 2 inches. It is a disqualification to have wool less then 1 1/2 inches in length.
Tips for getting a good showable Fuzzy Lop
1. As always check condition, if it is well groomed, kept clean and check to make sure it is free of disease (check ears, eyes, nose, genitals).
2. Fuzzy Lops are supposed to be under 4lbs. Look for one that is small and compact with good depth, not over weight or it maybe hard to keep it under that limit. Brood does are the only exception because larger does (while not extremely fat) produce larger litters and will often throw thicker bone. Look for a good head that balances with the body. The ears should be covered in fur and the feet should have thick pads of fur on them. Also check and make sure eye color match the color of the animal (eg. brown eyes for a black), and toenails for the color (eg. colored nails for a black).
3. The wool should be long (2 inches or more) and dense. It should be coarse, but babies under 6 months will have soft and get knotted easily. They will out grow this, and should be groomed as much as possible to keep the matting down.
4. Check out the pedigree, don’t ever get a show rabbit without a pedigree. Look at the line and check for inbreeding, or if it has the colors you would like to see if you want to breed. I breed mother to son and father to daughter alot, as well as many other breeders do, but I never breed a rabbit to another that has the same mother and father. This could can cause some defects and other health problems when it gets older. It’s best to stay away from that.
If you are just looking for a pet and you are interested in American Fuzzy Lops, they do make wonderful pets. Keep in mind they will require a bit additional grooming then a short haired lop. They have wonderful personalities and are very docile. A baby Fuzzy Lop will have what breeders call a “baby” coat from the age of 2-6 months, sometimes longer depending on some genetics. This is when I would recommend grooming once per week with a flea comb, cutting away any large tangles carefully with scissors.
When the senior coat comes in after the first molt, you will notice the difference. Many of my seniors are only groomed every 1-6 months (more often if they are being shown, left often if they are breeding stock.)
I also recommend shaving a baby coat off (in the summertime) with electric clippers. This greatly reduces the time needed for grooming and the senior coat will come in sooner.
Lots of breeders also breed out this baby coat because a breeder doesn’t want to spend hours combing it out. When I raised this breed, a lot of my juniors had coarser coats that required much less care.