FILIPINO BAGS RABBIT AWARD 

BY RICH BRIONES

Not too long ago, the American Rabbit Breeders Association, Inc. (ARBA) gave acknowledgment to a Filipino: Jaime “Jimi” Lim of Sugar N’ Spice Rabbitry and Caviary has successfully raised all 49 rabbit breeds recognized by the association.

“It’s really an achievement to be given the recognition,” said Lim. It did not come easy; it took time and effort before he could complete the list. Getting access was already a difficult task, but what he found even more challenging was ensuring that the rabbits remained healthy and cared for so that they could continue mating and reproducing.

Lim shared that at first, he had no plans of fulfilling the tally. But he realized that he already had half of the rabbits recognized by the association, so he might as well push through with the rest.

He had been caring for animals since the ‘80s – first, he raised pigeons, then he went on toe care for fancy chickens. 

RECOGNIZED RABBITS
Curious what the 49 recognized breeds are? Here they are in alphabetical order.

American, American Fuzzy Lop, American Sable, English Angora, French Angora, Giant Angora, Satin Angora, Argente Brun, Belgian Hare, Beveren, Blanc de Hotot, Britannia Petite, Californian, Champagne D’Argent, Checkered Giant, American Chinchilla, Giant Chinchilla, Standard Chinchilla, Cinnamon, Crème D’Argent, Dutch, Dwarf Hotot, English Spot, Flemish Giant, Florida White, Harlequin, Havana, Himalayan, Holland Lop, Jersey Wooly, Lilac, Lionhead, English Lop, French Lop, Mini Lop, Mini Rex, Mini Satin, Netherland Dwarf, New Zealand, Palomino, Polish, Rex, Rhinelander, Satin, Silver, Silver Fox, Silver Marten, Tan, and Thrianta.

Jimi Lim’s brother Amy with some of Sugar N’ Spice Rabbitry and Caviary’s awards during the RabbitConPH in 2019.

SMALL BEGINNINGS
Lim started with the smaller rabbits, such as Holland Lops, Netherland Dwarfs, and Lionheads. More recently, he welcomed the Argente Brun and Britannia Petite.

Lim also has other rabbits not included in the ARBA list, such as Saarland, Vienna White, Black and Tan, Schow Polish, Czech Frosty, Belgian Giant, and Harlequin Dwarf. Out of all of these, he mentioned that his favorite is the Flemish Giant, which he found challenging to raise – he initially thought that smaller rabbits would be more challenging.

Awarding of certificates in November 2020.

NEWEST ADDITION 
The Dwarf Papillon is the newest breed to be recognized by ARBA. This rabbit is small with a stocky build, weighing 1.3 to 1.9 kilograms. With a distinct marking, the Dwarf Papillon is also the 50th rabbit to be included in the ARBA list.

Lim already has a couple of Dwarf Papillons before they were added to the ARBA register. However, the rabbit was yet to be recognized when Lim received his award, so this particular breed was not included in his recog-nition. 

When asked about the best part of his current achievement, Lim answered that it was being able to share his interest with various people. “I can share [my interest and passion] with more people and more groups.”

He also said, “Kailangan [ng] tiyaga (Patience is necessary).” His advice was to focus on one type of rabbit at a time to ensure that one would be able to give them the best possible care.

Jimi Lim with one of his Belgian Giant Rabbits weighing over 5 kilograms.

SHOWCASING RABBITS
Lim does not want to just care for all types of recognized rabbits, but also to give them the best of care so that they’re of show quality. Every year, he has been joining RabbitConPH, the only rabbit show in the country that has been sanctioned by ARBA.

In 2017, Lim won both Best in Show and Reserve in Show, as well as ten Best of Breeds and seven Best Opposite Sex of Breeds. The year after, he once again bagged Best in Show, together with 14 Best of Breeds and five Best Opposite Sex of Breeds. In 2019, he won 24 Best of Breeds and 17 Best Opposite Sex of Breeds.

Asked about his plans for Sugar N’ Spice Rabbitry and Caviary, he said he would “focus on two to three breeds, like Champagne D’ Argent and French Lop.”