Where Do Blanc de Hotot Rabbits Come From?

Posted by Crystal Long
Pair of Blanc de Hotot rabbits sit together.

Known for their uniquely distinctive eyes, the Blanc de Hotot is a hardy rabbit breed you need to know about. Here is Blanc de Hotot rabbits 101.

For those who survived high school French, you may have already guessed the basics of where the Blanc de Hotot rabbit came from. Meaning "White of Hotot", the Blanc de Hotot (pronounced Oh-toe or Hoe-toe) is a rabbit breed from the area of -- yep, you guessed it -- an area by the name of Hotot-en-Auge in France.

With their unique great looks and a wonderful personality, this bunny is one any rabbit-lover must know about -- and take it from us, this rabbit is as lovely as they come! Read on to find out more about this medium-sized white rabbit.

The Story Behind the Blanc de Hotot

This breed of rabbit certainly has an interesting history! Originally hailing from Hotot-en-Auge, a tiny commune located in the Normandy region of northwestern France, the Blanc de Hotot rabbit breed was first developed by famed rabbit breeder Eugénie Bernhard; she bred these beautiful white rabbits with the goal of creating a rabbit breed that's suitable for both meat and fur production.

Bernhard developed this rabbit by crossbreeding the Checkered Giant rabbit (a.k.a. the Giant Papillon rabbit), with a White Vienna rabbit and a White Flemish Giant. After 20 years of working to perfect the breed, she showed the Blanc de Hotot rabbit at the Exposition Internationale d'Aviculture for the first time.

After World War II, the breed declined in population and almost became extinct in Europe. However, in 1978, a Texas man by the name of Bob Whitman brought eight Blanc de Hotots back to the USA.

Breed Standard of Blanc de Hotot Rabbits

Considered a hardy breed, Blanc de Hotot rabbits are always completely white with dark eyes. They are most famously known for having black eye bands around their dark eyes, almost as if someone just literally drew them on like eyeliner!

These rabbits have a compact, thickset body type, typically weighing 8 to 11 pounds with the all-white fur having a large number of guard hairs.

Loved for their beautiful looks and their over-all happy, loving disposition, the Blanc de Hotot rabbit breed is recognized by both the American Rabbit Breeders Association (ARBA) and the British Rabbit Council. These white rabbits, however, are considered globally endangered, with the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy (now called The Livestock Conservancy) listing them with a threatened status.

Do you find this rabbit as charming as we do? Share your thoughts on the Wide Open Pets Facebook page!

READ MORE: The Dwarf Hotot Rabbit: Cuteness You Can Hold in One Hand

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Where Do Blanc de Hotot Rabbits Come From?