How Big Are Flemish Rabbits?


Reading Time: 8 minutes

If you plan to get a bunny bigger than the standard rabbit breeds, then Flemish rabbits are an excellent choice. Flemish Giants are the largest rabbit breed recognized by the American Rabbit Breeders Association (ARBA). But these giant rabbits are not all about their size.

They have a fascinating history and they fill a distinctive space in the rabbit world. In this article, we will go over how big these gentle giants can grow, their origins, and the best ways to take care of them.

About Flemish Giant Rabbits

The Flemish rabbit is one of the oldest recognized breeds of rabbits in the world. Its breed standards date back to 1893. Although largely domesticated, these rabbits still retain certain adaptations of wild rabbits. For instance, they have large erect ears that contribute to excellent hearing. They also have good eyesight, which helps them detect predators fast. This rabbit breed has a long muscular body with a semi-arch that is easily noticeable.

Their History

Flemish rabbits are an old rabbit breed whose origins date back to the 1500s in Flanders. Here, breeders combined a variety of meat and fur breeds to create the ultimate meat and fur rabbit. The first record of Flemish Giant rabbits dates back to 1860.

This breed was brought to the United States a few years later in the 1890s. It is not until after 1910 that their popularity soared. Although originally bred for meat and fur, these bunnies started appearing in livestock shows and fairs.

Today, the Flemish rabbit is one of the few rabbit breeds recognized by the American rabbit breeders association popularly known as ARBA. It is advertised by NFFGRB (National Federation of Flemish Giant Rabbit Breeders) and an old rabbit breed club that was founded in 1915 by a group of Flemish Giant rabbit breeders.

The Flemish giant rabbit is an ancestor of many rabbits across the globe like the Patagonian Rabbit, Stone Rabbit, and the Belgian Hare.


Flemish rabbits are also known as universal rabbits because of their many uses. This rabbit breed can be kept for meat, fur, or even as a show animal.

But today, Flemish rabbits are bred mostly as companion animals. Their docile personalities make them wonderful pets. If treated well, they are very gentle and docile and live ven in homes with children. Some people also raise Flemish giants as show animals.

Characteristics of Flemish Rabbits

The Flemish Giant rabbit is a unique rabbit breed. They are the largest rabbit breed in the world. Flemish rabbits have long bodies with a wide back and well-rounded and sturdy hind legs.

Males have a broader head than Females. These rabbits are usually born in kit sizes of between 6 to 10, although some female rabbits have been known to have litters as large as 15 to 19 kits.


True to their name, these rabbits are large. On average, a fully grown male Flemish giant weighs around 15 to 22 lbs (6.8 to 10 kg) on average. Their breed standard states that they do not have a maximum weight.

From the tip of its front toes to the tip of its back toes, this rabbit can grow up to 38 inches in length which is equivalent to (95 cm). In fact, Flemish Giants are the largest rabbit breed. Their size is similar to that of medium-sized dogs. Flemish rabbits have distinctive heads and V-shaped erect ears. They also have an arch-shaped body and a rounded tail.

Male and female Flemish giants are easy to tell apart. For starters, Bucks – Male Flemish Rabbits – have a broader head while Does – Female Flemish rabbits – have dewlaps just below their chin and large, fur-coated skin. Female bunnies use their dewlaps to warm their baby bunnies.


Flemish rabbits have thick, glossy fur and a dense undercoat. Their thick coat means that they cannot handle heat very well. They may also suffer fur mites and ear mites infestations. So you should make sure their environment is cool and check their fur and ears for pests when grooming.


The National Federation of flemish rabbits recognizes seven colors of Flemish Giants. These colors include black, blue, fawn, sandy, light gray, steel gray, and white. Whatever the color of the coat, the fur should be thick and glossy, an indication of a healthy rabbit.


Although the Flemish rabbit can look intimidating to potential rabbit owners, these bunnies have one of the best temperaments. They are calm, friendly, and make excellent companions. When kept indoors, these bunnies will hop around the house and sit on their owner’s lap for some cuddles. They also love attention and are not afraid to hop on your lap for a cuddle.

That said, when handled improperly, these rabbits can bite, kick and scratch. This behavior usually manifests when the rabbit is scared or stressed. So it is important to respect their personal space, especially when they are new to your home. Also, take time to learn how your bunny communicates. These rabbits will tell you when they are happy and want cuddles and when they are not.


Flemish rabbits are a relatively healthy breed of rabbits with a long life expectancy. With proper health care and regular visits to the veterinarian, a healthy Flemish Giant rabbit can live between 6 to 8 years.

How Much Grooming Does a Flemish Giant Need?

The best part about owning this giant rabbit is that it does not require a lot of grooming. Flemish rabbits have short fur. You only need to brush its fur once a week, and twice when it is shedding its fur.

These bunnies shed their coat twice a year, in the fall and spring. You should also trim its nails as and when needed. Remember to check their fur for any signs of ear and fur mites.

At What Age Are Flemish Rabbits Fully Grown?

Generally, Flemish rabbits reach their adult size by the time they are 18 months (1.5 years) of age. These rabbits take a longer time to reach maturity size compared to other breeds of rabbits, which normally take between 6 to 9 months to reach their fully grown size. But these are a giant rabbit breed. So normally, they take a longer time to reach their adult size.

That said, some Giant Flemish rabbits reach their adult size earlier, at around 16 months, while others may continue growing well into their 2nd year. This variance is a result of genetics. A lot of it is affected by the size of the former rabbits in their lineage.

Other than genetics, other factors like their diet and their living conditions can affect how soon or late these rabbits reach their adult size.

Can Flemish Giant Rabbits Be Held?

Regardless of their size, most people can hold a Flemish rabbit. But this must be done correctly so they feel comfortable and their weight is properly supported to prevent injuries.

That said, not everyone can hold these rabbits. Remember that these bunnies are huge with some of them weighing up to 22 lbs (10 kg). This is quite heavy for most kids. Also, they tend to be long making it even harder to hold them.

How to Properly Hold a Flemish Rabbit?

These rabbits are big, so they need a lot of support when being picked up. To properly hold your giant Flemish rabbit, make sure to support its upper body by placing one of your arms around its front legs and chest. Use your other hand to support its lower body, hind legs, and spine.

Hold the bunny securely to your chest but be careful not to squeeze it as this can lead to aggressive behavior. Remember that although big, Flemish rabbits are still prey animals.

So naturally, they tend to get defensive when scared. If your furry friend appears anxious, try to reassure it in a soft calm voice. If this doesn’t help to calm it down, slowly and gently lower it to the ground and let it hop away.

Where Does a Flemish Giant Rabbit Live?

Flemish rabbits live in a home environment with human owners. They can also be kept in an outdoor pen environment for breeding.

How Much Space Do Flemish Rabbits Need?

Due to its larger-than-life-size, this rabbit needs larger living quarters and more food than smaller breeds. The minimum cage size of a giant bunny should be 4 feet in length and 4 feet in height. This way, your giant friend can comfortably stand on its hindquarters and stretch out without its ears, front or hind legs touching the ceiling or sides of the shed in any direction.

Generally, the more space you can provide your Flemish giant rabbit the better. The rabbit should not feel enclosed in a cage in any way. Ideally, the space you provide should be able to let them roam freely around. Make sure their hutch is big enough for them to hop around so as to get some exercise.

Provide a Play or Free Roam Area for Exercise

Flemish giants are generally a curious and inquisitive breed of rabbits. They like to explore and investigate their environment from top to bottom. Letting your rabbit out of its hutch and allowing it to hop around the home or yard is a good idea. This will help to keep their muscles toned.

So you will need to invest in an extra-large run. If you do not have outdoor space, you can offer them an entire room to cater to their exercising needs. Just make sure to put something down on the floor such as a rubber-backed rug or even straw.

These materials will protect your floor, help to keep the room clean and sanitized as well as prevent your Flemmie from getting injured on the hard floor.

Where Should You Put Their Cage?

The best part about this rabbit breed is that they can live both indoors and outdoors. Just make sure to provide them with sufficient space. For outdoor hutches, most owners prefer to have them customized or to build them from scratch. Wood, wire, roof shingles, and even metals are the most common materials people use to build rabbit hutches.

Equally, outdoor hutches must be appropriately placed. They should be protected against predators and the natural elements.

Bunny-proof Your Home

It is also important to keep electrical cords, wires, furniture legs, or even cushions that these rabbits can chew away.

If you opt to keep your bunny outdoors, make sure the environment is free of toxic plants, predator animals, chemicals, and extreme weather conditions.

Food and Diet

Flemish rabbits are not a very active breed. So they are prone to gaining excess weight if you do not monitor their diet. You should refrain from giving them too many treats.

Note, however, that you will need to feed your giant Flemish rabbit more food than the average rabbit due to its size. The exact amount of food you feed them will be based on their age, size, and activity level.

A high protein diet of about 16% enables your bunny to gain bone mass and muscle mass. Your Flemish Giant bunny should be eating a portion of hay that is at least their body size each day.

Hay is very important as it helps to keep their digestive system moving as well as helps to wear down their teeth to reduce their chances of getting dental issues. This, of course, is alongside freshly chopped leafy vegetables and pellet food. High-quality rabbit pellets help provide extra minerals and vitamins needed to keep your rabbit healthy. You should also provide them with fresh water in plenty.

Make sure to give your bunny plenty of time and attention. You can also make them rabbit-friendly chew toys to dig their teeth into and toss away from cardboard and other materials.

The Bottom Line

As the name suggests, Flemish Giant rabbits are huge. They are the biggest breed of rabbit in the world and can grow to the size of an average Basset Hound, for instance.

Due to their massive size, these bunnies can be challenging to hold, especially for young kids and the elderly. They also need big spaces to thrive. This applies to both their hutches and where they stay in general. Also, due to their size, these bunnies eat more than the normal sized rabbits.

But other than that, these rabbits make great house pets. Their docile nature and love for human interaction make them ideal for families as pet rabbits. They love their owners and will be happy living a quiet life.


How High Can Flemish Rabbits Jump?

These giant bunnies can jump up to 3 feet high, and for some, even higher. This information is particularly important to know if you are building a pen for them to roam around. You don’t want to build a fence that they can hop over and run away.

Can You House Train a Flemish Giant Rabbit?

Yes. Flemish rabbits are smart and intelligent animals that can be house trained. They are also very calm and easy to potty train. For best results, you should start training your pet rabbit to use a litter box from an early age or as soon as they enter your home. You can litter box train your bunny from a young age to minimize toilet accidents.

What is the Size of the Biggest Flemish Giant Rabbit?

In 2010, the Guinness World Records awarded a 51-inch Flemish rabbit the title of the longest rabbit in the world.


Leave a Comment