Holland lops are one of the most outgoing and active breeds, therefore they can be a challenge to pose. If you are just jumping into breeding and showing holland lops you will find that learning how to properly pose and handle your rabbit is an important part of the breed’s standard. Many of us that have been raising holland lops for several years have gone through many digital pictures of our bunnies to find that perfect one. Imagine how hard it was when we didn’t have digital cameras. So to eliminate the struggles you may have and to fully understand what makes a holland lop strike a pose I have illustrated a How-To guide.
Some breeders may see posing as a way of manipulating a rabbit’s conformation. The truth is that if a holland lop has the correct conformation you do not have to manipulate them. It is important to know that correct headset is key to a perfect pose. Many breeders would admit that topline is one of the hardest thing to achieve and keep in their lines.
Find a sturdy flat surface with traction such as a grooming table with a carpet square. Avoid posing on slippery surfaces and wire cage tops. Your Holland may react unnaturally and feel insecure on those types of surfaces.
Let your rabbit explore and relax. You will know when your Holland is relaxed when they start to lift their body off the table. This is a great way to see your rabbit in a natural state.
Start to square your rabbits feet until they are where they naturally should be planted on the ground. Make
sure the back feet are straight and the front feet are straight and equally balanced apart.
Use the hand you do not use to write with to stabilize and secure the back end. Do not push the rabbits back
end forward. Use the hand you use to write with by placing it underneath the chin and lightly lift up. Your Holland Lop should raise up. Patience and gentle handling is key in step 4. Make sure your Holland Lop’s front legs are spaced apart and square with the back legs.
Step 5 A & B
Your Holland Lop should not expose any daylight underneath the back of the front leg. Make sure the back feet are straight and sitting flat on the carpet. See photo 5B for correct front shot pose. By now, your Holland Lop should feel relaxed and comfortable remaining in this position. Your bunny may only pose for a
few seconds. Hopefully you’ve got the picture by now!
My Holland Won’t Pose - See Front End Faults Image
Make sure you fully understand and know the faults of your rabbit or ask someone that can show you. Certain faults may be the reason why your Holland Lop will not pose correctly. The diagram on the right
will explain and show these common faults.