What makes this bunny so special is his huge size. He’s nearly as large as his human siblings, weighing in at a hefty 19.8 pounds (approx. 9 kg).
Rivaling his best buddy, 4-year-old Macy Smith, in size, Cocoa Puff belongs to a breed of rabbit known as the continental giant, also called the German giant, which was originally bred for food.
The Smith family, speaking to Australia’s 7 News on June 1, explained that they had initially decided to bring a rabbit into their home in 2017 because they were renting; they were not allowed a dog or a cat. Macy, the biggest animal-lover of the family, had been hankering after a pet for some time.
“[W]e discovered that giant rabbits are very good with kids,” Macy’s mom, Lindsay, explained.
Cocoa Puff is a free-range house rabbit that also occasionally enjoys walks in the great outdoors with Macy, her older brother Hunter, 7, and their parents, Lindsay and Patrick. Incredibly, Cocoa Puff stays close to the family and never requires a leash.
Lindsay maintained that rabbits are incredibly smart, adding that she doesn’t think they get enough credit. “It doesn’t take [Cocoa Puff] long to learn a trick,” she said, adding that regular treats are the key to success.
Cocoa Puff’s sizeable heft is typical of his breed. The continental giant enjoys a healthy diet of two large plates of greens, hay, and rabbit food pellets per day, with occasional snacks of dried banana and mango.
His favorite activities of all are playing with the kids and cuddling with Macy; the two are inseparable.
There are a few minor drawbacks to having a house rabbit, Lindsay admitted. “It’s a longer process than a cat,” she said, speaking of litter training. “They don’t know how to do it automatically, so you have to train them in small chunks of the house.”
Nonetheless, the Smiths managed to train Cocoa Puff to use a litter tray within six to seven months. The rabbit also doesn’t chew furniture or other household items, a fact for which the parents are grateful.
According to the Humane Society, rabbits are the third most popular pets in America behind dogs and cats. However, they are also the third most likely to be abandoned; Lindsay urges other potential pet owners to do thorough research before committing to adopting a rabbit.
Rabbits need a lot of attention, and food bills can be substantial. However, in a responsible, loving home, the rewards are plenty; house rabbits are good with children and are typically tolerant and calm, traits exemplified in Cocoa Puff’s loving relationship with his pint-sized companion, Macy.
“From day one, Macy and Cocoa Puff had a really special relationship,” Lindsay told Inside Edition. “She would follow him around everywhere and he would let her cuddle with him and use him as a pillow.”
“It brightened our home,” the mom of two added. “The love and interaction I see between Cocoa Puff and my kids is just priceless and you can’t take that away. He’s a part of our family.”