Rabbits are known for their speed and agility. If you check at their hind legs, you will find that these are extremely developed and offer them enough agility. You might find a rabbit running away from your eyesight within an hour.
So, how fast can rabbit run? Well, most rabbits have an average speed of 35 miles per hour or 56 kilometers per hour. But, the speed varies from species to species.
But, rabbits are not natural runners. Instead, they are sprinters and jumpers. They usually hop around and run for a short distance, and they cannot maintain their speed for hours like other runner animals. They usually take momentum and run in short bursts and then opt for jumping for a long distance. Additionally, they also use running for accelerating quickly and for taking turns on their paths.
Wild rabbits vs Domesticated rabbits – Running
In the case of speed, wild rabbits are the winners. They are faster than pet rabbits. Wild pet rabbits have a speed of 35 to 45 miles per hour, pet rabbits only reach 30 to 35 miles per hour, and that too after training and regular practice.
The cause of these differences in their lifestyle. Wild rabbits thrive in the abundance of nature. Hence, they need to protect themselves from predators and dangers almost every day. Besides that, they also need to remain super alert and leave dangers as fast as possible. It causes them to run often and hence they have a faster speed.
On the contrary, pet rabbits live in a private and secured space where they do not need to fend off attacks from predators. Hence, they have a slower speed. Instead, they jump for a long distance horizontally. But, they can be trained as fast runners.
Speed of different rabbit species
The speed of a rabbit varies according to its species. While some species are inborn runners, others have average speed only. Here are examples of a few species and their speeds-
1. European rabbits
European rabbits are among the fastest species in the rabbit world. Their stronger legs allow them to reach a speed of 45 miles per hour. They are usually found in Europe and Africa and are swift runners. Their small body structure and lighter weight make them fast.
2. Snowshoe rabbits
These rabbits are usually found in American mountains. They have larger feet shaped like a snowboard and are among the slowest species in rabbits; They have an average speed of 27mph.
3. Cottontail rabbits
The cottontail rabbits are a breed with nearly twenty different species under the common name. They are pretty fast and can reach up to 30mph easily. But, they usually reach up to 18 mph. These breeds often run in a zigzag pattern, and it is their strategy to evade predators in the world. Due to this, they only reach 30mph for a few minutes.
Rabbits are natural runners and jumpers. Most rabbits have an average speed of 25mph. Domesticated rabbits are slower than their wild counterparts due to a secured environment. The speed of a rabbit varies from species to species, the highest being 45 mph.