“Lop” rabbits have ears that droop down past their faces instead of sticking up above their heads. There are quite a few Lop rabbit species, but two common domestic ones are the Holland and Mini Lops.
These adorable, fuzzy creatures are rated as some of the most popular domestic rabbits, especially among children. The Mini and Holland Lop share plenty of characteristics, but certain features set them apart.
The size difference between these two rabbits is the most significant, and it seems backward to most people: the Mini Lop is about twice the size of the Holland Lops.
We cover all the differences between them and how their care might differ, so you can make a better decision about which one suits your home.
At a Glance
Mini Lop Overview
Personality / Character
The Mini Lop is an adorable rabbit with floppy ears. Their sociability makes them one of the most desirable rabbit pets. They originated from breeding a German Big Lop with small Chinchilla rabbits, creating a miniaturized version of the Big Lop.
Mini Lops tend to be friendly. They are also quite playful in a more mellow way than Holland Lops and enjoy time outside the cage playing with other animals or their owners. They are intelligent and will not do well if they are mostly ignored, since they enjoy regular stimulation and attention.
Mini Lops are an excellent rabbit for those who want to cuddle, hold, and play with their rabbit friends.
Mini Lops have a rather odd ideal appearance. They should look as though they are a “basketball with a head.” What it means is that a typical Mini Lop should have an exponentially larger body than head. It is one of the physical characteristics that they are judged on.
Mini Lops have many colors and patterns possible because they have been so popular over the years. Almost any shade or combination that you would prefer in a rabbit is possible on a Mini Lop.
Since Mini Lops are so intelligent, training them is not a challenge. They enjoy the stimulation of training sessions and can quickly learn new tricks and commands. Since they are so playful, it helps to make the training session similar to a game.
Mini Lops also enjoy interacting with new things because they are naturally curious animals. They will enjoy playing with something like a wooden ball or an empty toilet roll. These rabbits can be trained to run through agility courses, spin and jump on cue, and even fetch.
Health & Care
Mini Lops and Holland Lops both require similar diets and care. They are both enormous responsibilities too. They need to be kept in a safe environment and let out at least once a day for an hour to run around and explore. They need to be either in a fenced-in space outdoors or inside the house.
Lop rabbits need pellet mixes that provide them with a balanced diet. They should also be fed plenty of hay, a staple for any breed of rabbit. It helps them digest and gives them material for their nests in their enclosures.
Mini Lops are suitable for homes with children because they are so friendly and enjoy spending time cuddling and playing. They are more docile than Holland Lops and will suit a relatively organized and calm home.
Holland Lop Overview
Personality / Character
The Holland Lops is one of the few rabbit breeds bred for their temperament specifically. They are such a beloved, soft, and well-sized rabbit that breeders have tried for many years to perfect the breed by making them mellow and social.
These little creatures easily tolerate being held and cuddled and enjoy a calm lifestyle. That is one reason that Hollands are considered excellent first pets for children or beginner rabbit owners.
Although they are relatively mellow, they are also quite active. For them to behave as well as they are meant to, they need to have time and space for exercise and to burn excess energy. Hollands are also social and prefer to play with other bunnies, animals, or humans when they are out of their enclosures.
These animals need to spend time with you or someone else during the day, along with exercise. If you or your family are not around that often, it would be best to consider getting a different breed. Even though they are low-maintenance in many other ways, these rabbits want other people or animals around to keep them company.
Holland Lops have broad, short bodies that make them seem relatively compact. Their ears point out and then down toward the floor, stemming off of a broad forehead. They are also known for having a “crown” of fur toward the back of their head that makes it look rounder and can be a point marking in some of their color varieties.
Like many other Lops, Holland Lops’s most well-known trait is having floppy, fluffy ears. They have larger ears than many Lops that widen at the bottom, making them look more rectangular than in other, similar species.
Holland Lops have dense, glossy fur that is easy to maintain. They do not shed much, and they have a wide variety of colors and patterns. The orange and cream wide-band rabbits are often the most popular as the soft appearance fits their lovable personalities.
Holland Lops are just as smart as Mini Lops. As a species, rabbits are quite intelligent and curious animals. They are typically excited to learn new things and explore new ways of interacting with you.
Much like the Mini Lop, with time, patience, and plenty of repetition, you can train your Holland Lop to perform actions on command, to jump around or through particular objects, and to play games like fetch.
Holland Lops are suitable for owners who are frequently around or at least have people in the home to interact with the rabbit. They are gentle creatures and enjoy spending time outside, so someone who can let them run around is also a good idea.
Which Breed Is Right for You?
Adopting a pet is a significant responsibility. You must find one that suits your lifestyle or that of your family to guarantee an easier fit.
Rabbits are best suited to people who are around the home regularly. Both Holland and Mini Lops enjoy interacting with others since they are so social. If they are neglected, they can become sad or lethargic, especially Hollands.
If you need a mellow rabbit, Mini Lops are probably the best choice for you. If you would like a more playful and energetic rabbit that still accepts handling, then a Holland Lop could be an excellent choice.
Featured image credit: Harold Cecchetti, Commons Wikimedia