The Britannia Petite was developed in Britain in the mid 19th century and is known there as the Polish rabbit. This dwarf breed is extremely lively and energetic.
The Britannia Petite was developed in Britain in the mid 19th century and is known there as the Polish. Despite their name, they do not come from Poland but were named for the 'polish' of their shiny coats. They are thought to derive from mixed breeds (probably small wild rabbits crossed with Dutch and Silvers) imported from Belgium and often referred to as Belgian table rabbits. These meat rabbits were perfected in the development of the Polish; although small it was bred for the table and considered a delicacy. The Polish breed was recognised in Britian in 1884, at first bred only in White with red eyes. These white Polish rabbits were first imported to the United States around 1912, where breeders sought to improve their 'snaky' type. The American Polish was selectively bred to a more compact, rounded body type, while the Polish breed in the UK remained slender and hare-like. Later imports of British Polish rabbits were considered a seperate breed to the American Polish rabbit and renamed Britannia Petite.
The Britannia Petite is the among the very smallest breeds with a typical weight range of 700g - 1.2kg (1½ - 2½ lbs).
Britannia Petites are distinctive for their elegant, upright pose. They are miniature, fine-boned and slender rabbits, with an arched, hare-like body. The head is wedge-shaped in profile with a quite pointed nose and ears held close together above the head, giving an alert appearance.
The Britannia Petite has a smooth coat of short, fine hair.
White (red-eyed), Black, Black Otter, Chestnut Agouti and Sable Marten.
Britannia Petites are extremely lively and energetic. Despite their small size, they need plenty of space as they are almost constantly active. They can run very fast, jump high and really enjoy the freedom to race around. They are intelligent and inquisitive and love to climb and explore; regular exercise is essential to prevent boredom.
Britannia Petites are not good with children. They do not like to be cuddled, preferring to be on the move, and are too small and fragile for children to handle safely.
Britannia Petites need to be accustomed to handling from an early age and a gentle, understanding approach is essential. They can be unforgiving of any rough treatment and a bad experience can leave them extremely wary or even aggressive towards humans.
The Britannia Petite can be a lively and entertaining rabbit for the more experienced owner.
Choose a rabbit with a good temperament, from a reputable breeder or rescue centre.