Rabbits are fascinating creatures. They’re known for their fluffy fur, big ears, and highly intelligent nature. However, one of the most noticeable features of white rabbits is their eye color. With multiple color possibilities, you may be wondering if white rabbits with blue eyes are rare. In this article, we’ll uncover the research behind this phenomenon.
The Most Popular White Rabbit Eye Colors
Similar to human eyes, there are a wide variety of colors that a rabbit’s eyes can be. You may find rabbits with amber, blue, ruby red, pink, marble, or brown eyes. Below, we’ll cover the differences between each eye color and why it occurred.
Blue eyes in rabbits are considered pretty rare. In order for a rabbit to be able to receive this trait, both parents need to have a gene to help create the blue eye color. The blue eye color is not blue, as you might assume.
In fact, it’s actually a combination of two pigments, including light and dark brown. If these pigments are smaller, the rabbit will have a blue-eyed rabbit. This also means that if the particles in the eyes grow over time, the eyes of a rabbit can darken into a brown color or a blue-gray variation.
Most rabbits will have dark brown eyes. Since this is a dominant gene in rabbits, this is the most common shade you’ll notice on domestic rabbits.
However, the trait of brown eyes is quite rare in white rabbits and is referred to as brown-eyed white, not albino rabbits.
You’ll typically find wild rabbits sporting amber eyes. However, this trait is usually rare in domestic rabbits. Instead, you’ll typically find hares with amber eyes, which are an animal commonly confused with rabbits. Amber eyes occur because a yellow gene has dominated over a brown gene, resulting in an amber eye.
Ruby Red Eyes
Ruby Red eyes are a sign that the rabbit has albinism, meaning they’ll always be white rabbits. However, this eye color is extremely rare, especially in wild rabbits. Unfortunately, due to the bright color of their eyes, white rabbits need to be protected from the sun since they lack that pigment in their eyes. As a result, they’ll thrive in a dimly lit environment and should avoid direct light in their eyes.
Pink eyes are considered rare because they’re typically the result of a genetic mutation or two copies of a recessive gene. This makes the rabbit’s eyes look pink instead of a brown color.
Marble eyes occur because of a rare genetic disorder known as sectoral heterochromia. This disorder causes a rabbit’s iris to have different colors in different parts of the eye, causing it to appear similar to the color you might find in marbles.
Additional Eye Variations
While those are the most common eye colors, there are other variations you might encounter. For example, some rabbits may have one blue eye and one brown or amber eye. You’ll also find a variety of colors called split eyes, which is when the iris has two different colors in each half of the eye. This is especially common in mottled eyes since they’re so unpredictable.
What About Flash Red Eyed Albino Rabbits?
Flash red eyes are not actually a color that you’ll find in an albino rabbit. Similar to how humans can appear to have red eyes if flash is present during a picture, so can an albino rabbit. The color of the eye is simply a result of using a flash to take a picture of your rabbit’s eyes!
Are Blue Eye Rabbits Rare?
Since there aren’t many rabbit breeds that will produce blue eyes, they are considered a very rare eye color. However, they can occur naturally in some rabbits.
The actual number of bunnies with blue eyes is unknown. This is because most professional animal organizations and competitions won’t actually recognize them as an official breed, meaning there’s no actual trace of how many bunnies in the world actually have blue eyes.
If you want to find a white rabbit with blue eyes, breeding is best since this requires two-parent bunnies with specific genes to produce a baby rabbit with blue eyes. It’s always best to work with a professional breeder, as they’ll have more knowledge on how to breed blue-eyed rabbits.
What Rabbit Breeds Have Blue Eyes?
The most common rabbit breed that you might find displaying the blue eye gene includes Polish breeds, Netherland Dwarf, Beveren, and the White Vienna rabbit. However, even if the rabbit does not fall into these breed categories, they might still have blue eyes if the Vienna gene is present.
The easiest way to find a white rabbit with blue eyes is to look for a Vienna rabbit marked with the Vienna gene. However, it’s important to note that just because the gene is present doesn’t mean that the rabbit will have blue eyes and white fur. This is why it’s essential to wait until the white rabbits are born to see if any have blue eyes.
Interestingly enough, the color of those blue eyes can change as the rabbit ages. While a white rabbit may be born with blue eyes, they may end up with gray or light brown eyes simply because the melanin in their eyes has not fully matured. The actual color of your rabbit’s eyes won’t be determined until they’re at least six months old.
How Do Rabbits Get Their Blue Eyes?
As we mentioned above, the blue eye gene is actually a result of two pigments, including light and dark brown, known as large pheomelanin particles and small eumelanin particles. Eumelanin particles will manifest a dark brown hue, while pheomelanin will show a lighter brown. When combined together, they can produce a gray or blue tint.
Does Eye Color Really Matter?
Eye color will not necessarily determine the temperament of your rabbit, as it has to do more with their breed. However, it is important to know the color of your rabbit’s eyes before purchasing your next furry friend because some eye colors as associated with issues or sensitivities that need to be addressed or managed throughout their lifetime.
This helps ensure that your rabbit stays healthy and safe. Regardless of the color, you’ll always want to make sure their eyes are clean and should be free from discharge coverage and red/irritated spots, regardless of color.
Conclusion: The Rarity Of White Rabbits With Blue Eyes
If you’re looking for a white rabbit with blue eyes, it’s essential to know that they are considered rare and may be hard to find. There aren’t many breeds of rabbits who can naturally produce the blue eye color since most don’t have the gene needed to create blue eyes.
If you want to find a white rabbit with blue eyes, breeding is best since this requires two-parent bunnies with specific genes to produce a baby rabbit with blue eyes. However, remember that this doesn’t guarantee a blue-eyed bunny, as having the genes present isn’t always enough to create blue-eyed white rabbits.