How Long Do Rabbits Live? Factors That Affect A Rabbit’s Lifespan

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How Long Do Rabbits Live

Rabbits make great pets for people who find their cautious and caring demeanor cute. Even though they assume every large animal is a predator, they form bonds of deep trust with their owners. And as precious as that is, the connection humans form with their rabbit pets can come to an abrupt end.

Knowing how long rabbits live can do two things. Firstly, it can make you aim for the maximum possible lifespan on realistic grounds. Secondly, it can help you be cautious of factors that can shorten your pet’s lifespan.

In this article, we will cover both the average lifespan and the factors that can shorten or lengthen it. By the end of this post, you will know how long different breeds of rabbits live. But first, let’s get started with a general answer.

How Long Do Rabbits Live?

Domestic rabbits live up to 5 years without much medical intervention and up to 8 years with proper pet care. Some rabbits can live up to 11 years, provided that all lifespan-enhancing factors are in their favor.

Rabbits can die prematurely if they are fed the wrong thing, accidentally starved, or left around predators. So regardless of lifespan, pet owners need to be careful about the various threats to a rabbit’s life. Knowing the factors that affect a rabbit’s lifespan is, therefore, critical for those looking to adopt them.

Factors That Affect a Rabbit’s Lifespan

Factors That Affect a Rabbit’s Lifespan
Factors That Affect a Rabbit’s Lifespan

Rabbits in the wild have a vastly different lifespan than rabbits who live indoors. This shows that how long a rabbit lives depends on factors other than its genetics. Let’s look at these factors and how you can optimize each one to ensure that your pet rabbit has a long life.

Living Conditions

The lifespan of a rabbit depends mostly on how many predators it has around. Rabbits are prey animals, and predators are the biggest cause of rabbit death outdoors. By simply living indoors, rabbits can live to their maximum potential. But regardless of whether a rabbit lives indoors, outdoors, or in the wild, it can eat something toxic and die.

The more sheltered a rabbit is from toxic food items, the better its odds of survival. This is more important than most first-time rabbit owners think because plenty of food items that are safe for human consumption can be toxic to rabbits. In a way, a pet owner who doesn’t know what to feed and what not to feed a rabbit is just as dangerous to the mammal as a predator.


Rabbits can live up to 3 years on average or even with zero healthcare. However, when rabbits start aging, their immunity drops, and their guts become increasingly vulnerable. The sooner you start taking your rabbit to the vet, the longer he will live.

Don’t wait for symptoms to start occurring because whenever a problem becomes apparent, it leaves a mark by the time it is solved. Rabbits have sensitive guts, and they are incessant nibblers, which is a bad combination for an indoor animal. Making sure your rabbit’s gut health is optimal requires at least 3 visits to the vet each year.

Rabbit Breed

This factor is different from the other two because they depend on it. Proper healthcare and a comfortable lifestyle can extend the lifespan of a rabbit to its maximum potential. The rabbit breed sets this maximum limit. Refer to the table below to see the maximum average lifespan of different breeds of rabbits.

BreedAverage LifespanMaximum Average Lifespan
Flemish Giant Rabbit8 years10 years
Giant Chinchilla Rabbit5 years8 years
Harlequin Rabbit5 years8 years
Standard Chinchilla Rabbit5 years8 years
Mini Lop7 years14 years
Lionhead Rabbit7 years9 years
Blanc De Hotot7 years10 years
American Rabbit5 years10 years
Silver Fox Rabbit7 years10 years
Cavies Rabbit4 years8 years
Palomino Rabbit5 years8 years
Creme d’Argent7 years9 years
Tan Rabbit8 years10 years
Britannia Petite6 years10 years
Silver Marten5 years10 years
Mini Satin Rabbit5 years8 years
Florida White Rabbit5 years8 years
Checkered Giant5 years8 years
Havana Rabbit7 years12 years
Dwarf Papillon7 years12 years
Giant Angora7 years12 years
Perlfee Rabbit7 years12 years
Rhinelander Rabbit5 years8 years
Himalayan Rabbit9 years15 years
Champagne d’Argent6 years8 years
Lilac Rabbit8 years12 years
Thrianta Rabbit5 years10 years
Polish Rabbit5 years8 years
Cinnamon Rabbit5 years8 years
Beveren Rabbit5 years10 years
Jersey Wooly Rabbit7 years10 years
American Chinchilla Rabbit5 years8 years
Silver Rabbit7 years10 years
New Zealand Rabbit5 years6 years
Belgian Hare5 years7 years
French Lop6 years8 years
Rex6 years8 years
American Fuzzy Lop5 years8 years
Satin Angora Rabbit7 years12 years
Dutch Rabbit7 years10 years
French Angora7 years12 years
Netherland Dwarf7 years10 years
Alaska Rabbit7 years10 years
Californian Rabbit5 years9 years
Argente Brun8 years10 years
Dwarf Hotot7 years12 years
American Sable Rabbit5 years8 years
Mini Rex7 years8 years
English Angora5 years8 years
English Spot Rabbit6 years8 years
English Lop5 years8 years
Holland Lop7 years10 years
Satin Rabbit5 years8 years

The above table doesn’t take into account the predator factor. Since this factor is missing indoors, you can take this as a handy guide for how long rabbits of different breeds can live if you provide them with proper healthcare and nutrition.

What Is the Lifespan of a Rabbit in the Wild?

What Is the Lifespan of a Rabbit in the Wild
What Is the Lifespan of a Rabbit in the Wild

A rabbit in the wild lives less than 2 years on average because of predators. This means that a rabbit’s natural expectancy is much shorter than its lifespan as a pet. But does that mean raising rabbits beyond their natural life expectancy is unethical?

There is no reason to assume that a 3 to 4-year-old rabbit is feeling worse than a 2-year-old rabbit. Life expectancy and lifespan are two different things. As long as your rabbit is not kept alive with a ventilator, it is living out its natural lifespan.

The life expectancy factors in the threats to life, whereas the lifespan subtracts the preventable threats. Human life expectancy used to be 30 years at one point. But even without contemporary medicine, life expectancy doubled as natural predator proximity became a non-factor.

So you don’t need to put down a rabbit after 2, 5, or even 8 years. The only time that decision becomes relevant is when your vet specifically tells you that your pet is suffering and cannot stop suffering as long as he continues to live.

That said, you need to be mindful of one thing regarding rabbits’ life expectancy. Animals that have a short life expectancy are often very efficient at reproduction. And rabbits have continued to exist despite their short lifespan because they breed a lot quicker and in a larger quantity.

If you don’t spay or neuter your rabbit, you might end up with more rabbits than you initially expected.

Here are some facts about how long a rabbit live?


Rabbits live up to 5 years with relative ease and up to 8 years with proper care. There are instances where rabbits have lived up to 11 years, but this requires advanced healthcare and frequent examinations. In the wild, rabbits get spotted by predators within 2 years, which drastically reduces their life expectancy.

Photo of author


Jennifer Bourassa is a passionate animal lover and the founder of The Rabbit Retreat, a website dedicated to educating rabbit owners and providing them with the necessary resources to care for their furry friends. With over a decade of experience in rabbit care, Jennifer is a knowledgeable and compassionate advocate for these beloved pets. Jennifer's love for rabbits started when she adopted her first bunny, Thumper, and quickly realized the joy and challenges that come with rabbit ownership. Since then, she has made it her mission to help other rabbit owners navigate the ins and outs of bunny care, from feeding and grooming to housing and more. With The Rabbit Retreat, Jennifer hopes to build a community of like-minded rabbit enthusiasts who can share their experiences and support one another in providing the best possible care for their furry companions.