'Rabbit Jumping' Craze Takes Off In Britain

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This pictures show how rabbits are being taught to show jump in a new craze taking off in Britain. Rabbit Jumping UK is the country’s only rabbit jumping club and began when retired office worker Maureen Hoyle visited a fellow breeder in Sweden and got inspired.The unusual sport is popular there and in other parts of Scandinavia.Rabbit fan Maureen took the idea back home and appealed to others to join a new club.The rabbits are trained by owners at home who use treats to encourage the animals to make a leap of faith over barriers.

On Saturday members met at the Yorkshire Event Centre in Harrogate, North Yorks. They treated visitors attending the Bradford Excel Small Animals Show to two competitions and rabbit jumping displays.”The rabbits love it,” said Maureen, from Huddersfield, West Yorks. “The rabbits are very agile and a lot of people are surprised by what they can do.”The rabbits have to clear the jump without touching it.

“In more serious competitions the obstacle has a delicately balanced weight at the top which will fall if the rabbit makes contact. That will add a penalty to the rabbit’s total time.”Nine competing rabbits wearing harnesses were guided by their owners on a lead through a course of six jumps.The world’s champion bunnies can clear heights of up to three feet.

(source)

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