Swedish Hare

Lisa Selvaggio
by Lisa Selvaggio
fast facts

About Swedish Hare

4 lb
8-12 years
Body Shape
Full arch
Best Suited For
Rabbit owners of all experience levels
Outgoing, friendly, active, docile
Comparable Breeds
Belgian Hare, Polish Rabbit
Swedish Hare Breed History/Origin

The Swedish Hare was developed as the popularity of rabbit sports grew around the world. Mirjam Gille and Linda Ahlsen started working on this breed in the early 2000s, and the first litter was born in 2004. A similar breed, known as the Elfin Rabbit, was also being developed at the same time in the United States, so breeders began working together to create a single breed with a single standard.

Breeders wanted to develop a rabbit breed that would be able to excel at sports and shows. Even though they were able to collaborate for a while, though, they eventually split up because of disagreements in terms of standard and name.

Some of the many breeds that have been included in the development of the Swedish Hare include the Belgian Hare, the Polish Rabbit, the Dwarf Lop, the Holland Lop, the Netherland Dwarf, the English Rabbit, and the Gotland Rabbit.

The Swedish Hare is bred to enjoy being athletic and active.

Overall Description

The Swedish Hare should appear graceful, powerful, and alert. This is a fine-boned breed that is narrow in the shoulders and features straight, long front legs. The flank should be muscular and there should be strong and well-rounded hindquarters and loins. Also, the animal’s hind feet will be broad and long to enhance sporting performance.

The head should be fine and long, and the neck should be long as well. When you look at this rabbit from the side, the ears, head, chest, and front legs will form a vertical line. The back will form a graceful arch from the tail to the back of the neck, while the belly will be tucked up well.

The tail of the Swedish Hare will be straight and it can be held flat on the floor or against the rabbit’s body. The ears will be erect at the top of the head and, when measured, should be approximately the same length as the measured distance from the nose to the base of the rabbit’s ears. They will also be rounded and well covered.


A Swedish Hare’s flyback fur will be close to its body, and the fur should not be any longer than an inch. If you were to stroke the rabbit in a reverse direction, the fur should quickly move back into its original position. Also, the coat should not showcase any matting, baldness, or wooliness. Instead, it should always be smooth.


All colors, markings, and patterns are accepted when breeding the Swedish Hare.

A Swedish Hare’s flyback fur will be close to its body, and the fur should not be any longer than an inch.

Care Requirements

Because the Swedish Hare is a smaller rabbit breed, your pet will not require a large enclosure, but his cage should be big enough for him to move around freely, stand up straight, and stretch.

You should let this active rabbit out of his cage regularly so that he can run and jump around, as well as get some much-needed exercise. If you are going to bring your pet outside when the weather is warm and dry, you should use a safe outdoor enclosure to protect your pet.

Your Swedish Hare’s varied diet should consist of hay, leafy greens and various vegetables, fruits, and pellets specifically made for pet rabbits. However, hay should make up around 70% of the diet. Be sure to always provide fresh, clean water too.


Like other rabbit breeds, the Swedish Hare might be susceptible to conditions that include dental problems, gastrointestinal ailments, parasitic infections, respiratory infections, and head tilt. Feeding your pet the appropriate diet, making sure his cage is always kept clean, and allowing him to get physical exercise and plenty of love and attention will help you keep your pet happy and healthy, and you will also be able to recognize signs of illness as soon as they occur if you spend plenty of time with your pet.

The Swedish Hare should appear graceful, powerful, and alert.


The Swedish Hare is bred to enjoy being athletic and active, so it is important to give these rabbits plenty of interaction and playtime in a large enough space. You can also expect that your pet will be outgoing and friendly, as well as docile and mellow, making him easy to handle and a lot of fun to be around.

Photo credit: Gyldwiz/Wikipedia; Udo Schröter/Flickr

Lisa Selvaggio
Lisa Selvaggio

Lisa Selvaggio is a freelance writer and editor, and our resident cats-pert, with certifications in pet nutrition and pet first aid. She enjoys producing content that helps people understand animals better so they can give their pets a safe and happy home.

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