Why a Cinnamon?
By Candy Kolb
Editor’s Note: Candy Kolb was instrumental in organizing the first Cinnamon Guide Book (published in 1985). Many of her publications, such as this one, offer timeless insight into a breed she spent much time promoting.
Without a doubt, the first thing that attracts your eye is the unique color. The same coat pattern is seen in Lops and Netherland Dwarfs and can be brought forth in Satins and Rex, where it isn’t accepted at present. This color is a rusty brown body, about the same shade as a stick of Cinnamon spice used in the kitchen. Over the back of the adult is a smoke grey ticking, which gives a delicate two-tone effect.
The ears are laced with grey to black shading which covers them to the base, and the eyes are emphasized by dark eye circles, while the nose sports a butterfly effect in the same color. The legs and the entire tail are also dark, and the underside, from chin to crotch, is perhaps the darkest of all. It is relieved only by two orange lap marks in the groin area.
Blowing into the fur of the back and belly displays a delicate orange undercolor. Absence of any of these characteristics is a disqualification.
The color should blend smoothly but distinctly, without splotchy patches or excessive white hairs to detract from the appearance.
But the Cinnamon is much more than a color breed. When you begin to look at the type of the animal, you find a fine commercial rabbit with excellent meat-producing qualities. Good depth and width of body are necessary, as well as well-filled shoulders, hips, and loin. Add the characteristics of fast growth, being easy keepers, and good mothering ability, and you have nearly the whole picture. What else can be left to describe?
Why personality, of course! Any rabbit that receives a little extra in the way of attention is soon perceived to have some sort of personality, but in the Cinnamon it seems to take the form of a very gentle disposition. There are exceptions in every breed of rabbit, but the Cinnamon rabbit seems to have an exceptional tolerance to handling by inexperienced people. Adult bucks and does are easy for youth to handle and are fine animals for use in showmanship classes. The new mothers don’t seem to get as excited as some young does of other breeds, and the youngsters exploring the new world from the safety of the nest box are typically cute, friendly bunnies who readily learn to look forward to the coming of their caretaker.
Litters are born with their shadings already marked out on their skin, and as soon as the baby fur grows in, they develop gloriously looking coloring that makes them a delight to visitors to your rabbitry. They lack the ticking over the back, and their soft baby fur is quite a different texture which shows off the color in a soft glow.
The presence or lack of ticking is a point which some spectators and even some judges do not seem to understand. Occasionally the exhibitor will show under a judge unfamiliar with this breed, and the judge may penalize the older animals for not having the clear color of the juveniles. Or he may penalize the younger rabbits for failing to show as much ticking as the adults. As a promoter of the Cinnamon breed, here is a change to educate some new people about this breed. Accept the judge’s ruling without argument, but courteously and with good humor explain the special characteristics of your breed afterwards. Judges and other spectators are always willing to learn more about the lesser-known breeds, and you will help increase the popularity of Cinnamons by sharing the information about them.
Cinnamons attract attention because they are a bit of an unusual sight in most show rooms. For that reason they appeal to many breeders, and quite often this will result in interested youths. Everyone wants to have what is new and different. It is up to the Cinnamon breeder to insure that only the best examples of the breed represent it in public. Choose animals which will do you proud on the show table, and cull your herd with the idea of improving the commercial qualities of the breed. The more people who have a chance to raise these rabbits, the easier it is to display just how dandy they are!