Vienna Blue

Vienna Blue

Typical of the Vienna Blue: Shiny blue-grey fur and blue-grey eyes.

The name says it all: the Vienna Blue rabbit breed originally comes from Austria. With their shiny blue-grey fur, rabbits of this breed aren't just very attractive to look at, but also have a loving character. In addition, these pleasant long-eared pets are robust and low-maintenance.

Appearance of the Vienna Blue

The Vienna Blue is known as a Vienna rabbit. This is a group of medium-sized rabbit breeds of different colours. Every colour variety of Vienna rabbits is an individual rabbit breed. Along with the Vienna Blue, there is also the White Vienna, Black Vienna, Grey Vienna and Slate Blue Vienna.

As the name suggests, this rabbit breed originally comes from Vienna. Its coat is characterised by a full bluish grey tone. It is of medium length, shiny and has a particularly thick undercoat. The Vienna Blue has blue or slate blue eyes and their claws are dark in colour.

All Vienna rabbits have a similar physique: Their torso is slightly elongated and cylindrical, whilst the limbs are medium-length and sturdy.
On a short neck sits a head with a broad forehead, snout and plump cheeks. The upright ears are 10 to 13cm in length.

Ideally, a rabbit of this breed weighs between 4.25 and 5.25kg. The minimum weight is 3.75kg.

Character: Trusting and curious

Vienna Blues are considered relatively straightforward animals. They have a peaceful, trusting nature and are easily tamed. If treated well, these rabbits can form a trusting relationship with their owner.

Furthermore, Vienna Blues are very curious. They love exploring their environment and enjoy exercise.

These character traits make the breed suitable even for first-time rabbit owners. However, the prerequisite is of course species-appropriate housing that takes into account their need for variety and company.

Important for housing: Company and variety

Although the Vienna Blue is a robust and undemanding rabbit breed, there are a few points to take into account when owning one so that it feels at ease.

Like all rabbits, these slate blue beauties are very sociable creatures and should definitely not have to live alone. They need at least one other rabbit with which they can communicate and cuddle in rabbit fashion.

Living together with littermates of a different sex works best. Equally, a group with one male and two females is possible.

With certain conditions, you can keep your Vienna Blue together with cats. Don't get your hopes up though of a close friendship developing. Dogs and rabbits may also go together. To be on the safe side, never leave your rabbit alone with the dog.

Not together with guinea pigs

Unfortunately rabbits are often kept together with guinea pigs, although the two species have very little in common and shouldn't be housed together.

Rabbits like cuddling and help keep each other clean. Guinea pigs aren't familiar with such behavior and feel cornered by it. Another example is that whilst guinea pigs have a very complex spoken language, rabbits only scream in fear of death. Misunderstandings and aggressions are predestined.

Vienna Blues are very fertile

Caution: Vienna Blues are very fertile. For this reason, these slate blue rabbits are very popular with breeders in particular. In order to avoid unwanted offspring and aggressive behavior relating to the heat period and false pregnancy, you should get your rabbits castrated or neutered in good time.

Best kept outside

Although Vienna Blues can also be kept inside a home, an outdoor hutch with an attached outdoor enclosure is a more species-appropriate alternative, because these robust rabbits feel happiest there.

Definitely make sure there is sufficient protection from the sun in summer, because too much sun can bleach the fur of Vienna Blues. In general, you should make sure that your rabbits don't get too hot in summer.

This is the basic equipment of a rabbit hutch:

In the zooplus online store, you can also find a large selection of rabbit hutches and outdoor enclosures.

Rabbits need space

A small shed on the balcony is not a suitable space for a rabbit. This also applies to curious Vienna Blues with their strong urge for exercise. Due to their size alone, they need a spacious living area.

Like all lagomorphs, Vienna Blues get bored quickly. Hence, they need regular activity and enjoy varied exercise. There should be plenty of space to hop, run and swerve. An adventure play area with sandpits for digging, as well as pipes and tunnels to hide, gets any rabbit's pulse racing.

You can also find play tunnels and pipes in the zooplus online store.

Low-maintenance rabbits

Naturally the hutch and enclosure should be cleaned regularly. Apart from this, taking care of Vienna Blues isn't particularly laborious.
You should brush out the coat now and then during the moulting period in spring and autumn.

Also regularly check your rabbit's claws. Especially if animals solely move within your home, their claws don't get worn down enough. You should cut overly long claws with clippers, although your vet can do this too.

Diet of the Vienna Blue

There is nothing unusual to take into consideration in terms of diet. Like all rabbits, Vienna Blues have quite a sensitive stomach. Fresh hay and straw every day prevents digestion problems and is thus compulsory. Fresh water should also always be readily available.

Along with fresh vegetables like carrots, rabbits enjoy eating fresh grass and dandelion. Make sure they also have branches and twigs to chew on.

If you wish to give your Vienna blues prepared food mixes, make sure it is of a high quality with no sugar or other harmful additives.

Health: Vienna Blues are robust

Vienna Blues are considered a resistant rabbit breed with no significant demands. Their average life expectancy is eight to ten years of age.

As previously mentioned, they are very fertile. They also grow quickly and are good food converters.

However, this breed is prone to misaligned teeth – caused by the broad, shortened head. To be on the safe side, regularly get your vet to check your Blue Vienna's teeth.

Branches, fresh grass and hay encourage the abrasion of the teeth and prevent dental problems.

Buying a Vienna Blue

Has this loving rabbit breed conquered your heart and you would like to give a group of Vienna Blues a home?

Vienna Blues are offered for sale on several ad portals. However, animal welfarists generally advise against purchasing rabbits from such private breeders. These animals are often kept in conditions that are anything but species-appropriate: too little space, lack of hygiene and insufficient veterinary care are clearly no exceptions.

Bucks have to live most time alone without the company of other rabbits, because they are only needed for mating with females.

A similar principle applies for pet shops and DIY stores. Animal welfarists criticise that sometimes very young animals are offered there – separated from their mother too early and at times bred in dubious conditions.

It's difficult to judge to what extent organised pedigree rabbit breeders keep their animals in a species-appropriate manner. If you wish to buy a rabbit from a breeder, you can ask various associations such as the British Rabbit Council about reputable suppliers.

You're best off adopting a rabbit from an animal shelter, where you can find rabbits of all breeds and with a bit of luck, Vienna Blues. The advantage is that the employees know their fosterlings well and are happy to advise you which rabbit is the best fit for you.

Health: Vienna Blues are robust

Vienna Blues are considered a resistant rabbit breed with no significant demands. Their average life expectancy is eight to ten years of age.

As previously mentioned, they are very fertile. They also grow quickly and are good food converters.

However, this breed is prone to misaligned teeth – caused by the broad, shortened head. To be on the safe side, regularly get your vet to check your Blue Vienna's teeth.

Branches, fresh grass and hay encourage the abrasion of the teeth and prevent dental problems.

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