- COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: France
- YEAR RECOGNIZED: circa 1932
- USES: Fur, meat
- WEIGHT: 12 pounds (5.4 kg) max., senior does
- BODY TYPE: Commercial
- FUR TYPE: Flyback; ARBA Commercial Normal Fur Standard
- COLORS: Bluish white with black guard hairs
IT’S FAIRLY CERTAIN that this breed originated in the Champagne region of France. But whether it was in the l8th or the 17th century depends on which source of information you believe. The breed was very possibly developed by Benedictine monks within their monastery walls. In any event, as far as purebred rabbits are concerned, the Champagne d’Argent is an old-timer.
One of the larger breeds raised in North America, the Champagne d’Argent was undoubtedly developed for both fur and meat. It has dense, glossy fur and the typical plump, firm body of a meat-type rabbit. As with many other breeds once valued only for their utility, Champagnes or “Champs” today are often raised for show as well as for their fur and meat. While 12 pounds is the maximum weight, 10.5 is closer to the ideal.
The Champagne d’Argent can be distinguished from other breeds by its silvery fur with dark trim and the abundance of black hairs that lend a pewter tone — sometimes described as bluish white — to the coat. The nose and muzzle, marked with a butterfly pattern, are much darker than the rabbit’s body. The Crème d’Argent, a similar rabbit in conformation and name, is distinguished from the Champagne d’Argent by its cream-colored fur.