Variations in Faces and Ears in the English Angora

The Classic English Angora

The classic English Angora comes in one of the standard colours, and has well woolled and tufted ears (tassel tips). The rabbit has a fringe, with wool long and thick between and behind the ears. Wool on the cheeks is long, but wool around the eyes and the rest of the head is short (the clear face).

A classic English Exhibition Angora with tassel tips and clear face.

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Woolfest Online 2021

The National Angora Club is a non-profit making society which promotes the Angora rabbit and its welfare. Our members are spinners, exhibitors and companion animal owners. We sell the surplus wool of our rabbits to go towards the costs of keeping them. We keep our Angoras ethically, making it an expensive hobby. Vaccination alone can cost £70 per rabbit per year! 

We produce Angora wool ethically by shearing the rabbit every three months. This does not harm the rabbit in any way. Rabbits sit quietly on the owner’s knee to be sheared. Wool is sorted into best quality spinning wool (above 2.5 inch staple) and second quality felting wool (coarser wool from chest and tummy, and shorter lengths.) Spinning and felting wool in White and a variety of colours is available by mail order. We also sell wooden bottom whorl drop spindles at prices suitable for just having a go.

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Thinking of getting an Angora?

I would really like an Angora…….

An Angora rabbit in full exhibition coat is one of the most attractive sights at a rabbit show. However, before settling on the rabbit of your dreams, it is worthwhile thinking about what rabbit keeping in general involves. Rabbits need a lot of attention and Angora rabbits require extra care. 

Here are some of the questions a reputable Angora breeder will ask someone wishing to buy a rabbit, along with some of the questions that a new Angora owner will ask.

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The wool-bearing bunny

Buy the latest copy of Country Smallholding magazine to read an article by Lee Connor featuring Lesley Hordon and Richard Grindey-Banks, who are our National Angora Club Members. The three page article covers the role of Angora rabbits in wool production and exhibition. Care, housing, clipping and grooming are featured, along with advice on choosing quality rabbits. The article appears in the magazine’s special 45th birthday November 2020 issue, and is well worth a read.

Virtual Fibre-East 2020

Rio, the Sooty Fawn Angora, sitting patiently for his haircut. Afterwards he will be out on the lawn, digging some very big holes!

The National Angora Club is a non-profit making society which promotes the Angora rabbit and its welfare. Our members are spinners, exhibitors and companion animal owners. We sell the surplus wool of our rabbits to go towards the costs of keeping them. We keep our Angoras ethically, making it an expensive hobby. Vaccination alone can cost £70 per rabbit per year! 

We produce Angora wool ethically by shearing the rabbit every three months. This does not harm the rabbit in any way. Rabbits sit quietly on the owner’s knee to be sheared. Wool is sorted into best quality spinning wool (above 2.5 inch staple) and second quality felting wool (coarser wool from chest and tummy, and shorter lengths.) Spinning and felting wool in White and a variety of colours is available by mail order. We also sell wooden bottom whorl drop spindles at prices suitable for just having a go.

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Is my rabbit an Angora?

The National Angora Club are often contacted by people who have bought or rescued a fluffy rabbit, and have been told that it is an Angora. Even the Rabbit Welfare Association may be mistaken, as their Winter 2017 magazine shows. Their article on Angora rabbits pictured 1 Angora, 2 Lionheads and a possible Cashmere Lop. The Club are willing to offer help to people struggling with their rabbit’s coats, but please be warned! Crossbreed fluffy rabbits often have coats that are very hard to care for, matting easily. If you wish for a long haired rabbit, think very carefully of the work involved. Obtain your rabbit from a reputable breeder, who will give life long support, and clipping and grooming lessons before you take your rabbit home. YouTube is not enough!

A White Exhibition Angora

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Fibre-East and British Wool Show 2019

The National Angora Club had stands at two craft festivals in July and August this year. Fibre-East took place at Redbourne School, Ampthill, Bedford on 27th July, after a very hot week. Thankfully the temperature dropped so it was safe to bring Cheyenne, the Smoke Angora.

Anne demonstrated spinning pure Angora on the wheel, whilst Lesley taught spindle spinning.

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War Rabbits

The Story of the Rabbit in the First World War

This book tells the stories of rabbit keepers and their rabbits during the Great War. It was published on Armistice Day 2018, commemorating the 100th anniversary of the end of World War 1. 

The Fancy Goes to War

At the onset of the War, younger rabbit fanciers enlisted. Older fanciers struggled to keep rabbit shows going, and started breeding rabbits for meat. As German U-boats sank merchant ships, home food production had to increase. The Government promoted rabbit breeding, and the Food Production Department joined with fanciers in the National Rabbit Scheme. A Rabbit Club was set up at Buckingham Palace. The King was the President, and Princess Mary a member.

Feeding Rabbits in Wartime

The rabbit journal, Fur and Feather, continued to report the rabbit shows,  and keep fanciers up to date with regulations on feeding their rabbits. It was an offence under the Defence of the Realm Act to feed human food to animals, punished by imprisonment. There were grave shortages of hay and oats, which were sent to feed Army Horses in France. Fanciers had difficulty finding substitutes.

Rabbits for Food

Many new rabbit keepers, outside the Fancy, took up breeding rabbits for food.  However, standards of hygiene were poor. Wood for hutches was scarce. Among the unfortunate crossbred rabbits raised for the table, coccidiosis reached epidemic proportions. Hundreds of rabbits died.

Helping “the Boys” Start Up Again

When fanciers returned from the Armed Forces after the War, those left at home set up a scheme to provide them with free rabbits. Prices of rabbits had soared, due to the demand for breeding stock for food. However, no returning troops wanted Angoras! 

Rabbits At the Front

We know that rabbits served as mascots on the Western Front. They also served in the Air Force, Navy, and in the Submarine service. Australian rabbits also served – as dinner for the troops! These made a welcome change from bully beef and hard Army biscuit. 

The book is available from http://www.furandfeather.co.uk and http://www.waterstones.com

The National Angora Club Products Competition

The London Show October 2018

Mary Tomlin’s winning shawl

The National Angora Club products competitions are open to all members, whether they keep rabbits themselves or not. Whilst it is great to see members on the day handing in their entries, those who cannot travel to shows can send in their entries by post. 

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