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J is for Rabbit Show Jumping

JHow can any self proclaimed rabbit lover not think of 'jumping' when thinking of pet topics that start with J?  Why walk when you can jump!?  And jump rabbits do!  Did you know that when rabbits are really happy, they do a special kind of jump called a binky?  Each rabbit will have his/her own binky style.  Some rabbits really throw themselves into it, it can sometimes look like some crazy type of rabbit dance.  Seriously search for rabbits doing binkies on YouTube, you won't be disappointed.

While all rabbits jump, some very talented bunnies take jumping to a whole new level.  Sometimes called just rabbit jumping, or hopping, rabbit show jumping is a sport that, in essence, is similar to horse show jumping.

 

"Kaninhoppning-king of joyride" by sv:User:Wikkie - Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons - http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Kaninhoppning-king_of_joyride.jpg#/media/File:Kaninhoppning-king_of_joyride.jpg
"Kaninhoppning-king of joyride" by sv:User:Wikkie - Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

This may come as a surprise to anyone who's not overly familiar with rabbits.  Yes, rabbits can be trained.  They are a lot smarter than most people give them credit for, although I'm sure not all of them are suited for show jumping.

The American Hopping Association was founded in 2001, but the sport was originally created in Sweden in the 1970's.  It does seem to be slowly gaining in popularity, at least within rabbit owner circles.  I've kept house rabbits as pets for many years now, and only rather recently learned about rabbit show jumping.  For rabbits suited to the sport, it seems like it would be a fun way to bond with your pet.

I wouldn't even attempt to introduce my rabbit Barnaby to show jumping.  At 8 years old he's a senior now, and is also very shy.  I do wonder if Poppet might have fun with it though.  She's still pretty young, has lots of energy, and is quite the opposite of shy.  At some point I might see if I can build a jump for her and see if she takes to it at all.  I doubt teaching her to go over jumps would ever be anything more than just a fun activity to do at home for us, but it might be a good way to get some bonding time in, as well as giving her some mental stimulation.

  • Helena Lemon

    How sweet! Jumping rabbits! I'm sure it enriches their lives to introduce them to a new skill set! it's kind of like our border collie. I'm sure if I were a better trainer, she could do so many things but lazy me, I just taught her how to catch a frisbee. She certainly does it with gusto, though!

    • I'm sure she's having a lot of fun playing frisbee! I love border collies. I'd love to own one someday, but not while we're living in an apartment.

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