Champagne d'Argent Rabbits
champagne dargent

champagne dargent
Champagne d'Argent.
This beautifully silvered rabbit breed provides the foundation genetics for related breeds, such as the Argente Bleu, Argente Brun, Argente Crème, and Argente St. Hubert.

While not the oldest breed ever, the Champagne d’Argent is recognizable in history clear back to 1631. Undoubtedly the breed predates this reference by untold years.

Sponsored Links

In 1631, Gervaise Marrkham advised rabbit breeders to use the largest "conies," or rabbits, they could find for breeding stock, and then offered, in the King’s English, a description of the fur color and qualities in a silvered rabbit: champagne dargent

"For the richnesse of the skin, that is accounted the richest which hath the equallest mixture of blacke and white haire together, yet the blacke rather shadowing the white; the furre should be thicke, deepe, smooth, and shining..."

Yep, perfect description of the Champagne d'Argent. 

Champagne d'Argent (Argente Champagne) rabbit breed

France’s Encyclopaedia of Science, dated 1765, describes a silvered rabbit such as the Champagne d’Argent and the Argente Brun, but under the name of a Riche Rabbit, possibly because, again in the ancient words of Marrkham, "When another skin is worth two or three pence, they are worth two shillings."

Champagnes first arrived in the USA in 1912 under the name of Champagne or French Silver. The Champagne d’Argent Rabbit Federation formed in 1932. 

In the UK, the breed is known as Argente de Champagne.

The Silvering Process
champagne dargent

Champagne d’Argent rabbits are born pitch black. It is not until their first junior coat, at around 7-8 weeks old, that the silvering effect begins to show itself. champagne dargent

Champagne d'Argent fur shaft revealed

As the new coat begins to come in, the "secondary" guard hairs are white-tipped. The "primary" guard hairs and the undercoat, however, are still fully pigmented. The effect this gives is that of "old silver." The darkness of the still-pigmented guard hairs and the undercoat, where they show through, "tarnishes" the overall silveriness of the rabbit. This is very striking and attractive, and is the reason why over the ages, the pelt of the rabbit we know today as the Champagne d'Argent commanded huge premiums over the value of a standard rabbit pelt.

With each successive molt, more of the pigment is lost, extending even to the primary guard hairs and the undercoat, although we’ve never seen a Champagne d'Argent that looks completely white.

The degree of silvering is heritable. The Silver rabbit, and the Silver Fox rabbit are both silvered breeds, examples of minor silvering. champagne dargent

Domestic Rabbit Breeds E-book

Are you trying to decide which breed is best for you?

Do you see a bunny available, but haven't heard of that kind before?

Are you curious about the different types of rabbits?

Check out our ebook, Domestic Rabbit Breeds. We also have lots of other great books with everything you need to know about rabbits, from housing to healthcare. Check out our BOOKSTORE.

Summer Sale! All of our ebooks are ON SALE, 30% off!
BUY NOW for $12.99 $8.99!

Belgian Silvers champagne dargent

The French like their Argente de Champagnes fifty-fifty, or moderately silvered, while breeders in Belgium prefer heavily silvered Champagne d'Argent rabbits. In fact, they could not compete fairly in European shows due to the fact that their Argente de Champagnes didn't correctly match the official French standard.

But no problem. They renamed their rabbits Belgian Silvers, and wrote a new standard for the "new" breed.

Go to this Champagne d'Argent Facebook page for some additional great pictures of Champagne d'Argents.

The national club is Champagne d'Argent Rabbit Federation.
champagne dargent

Champagne d'Argents and Argentes in the USA vs UK

Well silvered Champagne d'Argent rabbitWell-silvered Champagne d'Argent rabbit

The Argente de Champagne of the UK weighs approximately 3.62 kg (8 pounds). Its coat is at least an inch long, and glossy and dense. The density causes the coat to not lay flat, meaning you can see through the silvering to the shadowy dark underfur. In the words of the BRC Standard of Excellence, the coat color gives the effect of "old silver." champagne dargent

The Champagne d’Argent in the USA is a substantially larger animal, tipping the scales at up to 12 pounds. It exemplifies a commercial, meat rabbit type, being full in the shoulders and deep in the hindquarters.

Rabbits love Bunny Branola - 6 delicious flavors!

Other Argente Breeds champagne dargent

Argente Bleu, Argente Brun, Argente Noir, Argente St. Hubert

The Argente Bleu, Argente Brun, Argente Noir and Argente St. Hubert have nearly identical Standards of Excellence in the UK. Each of these four breeds should weigh about 2.72 kg (6 pounds). Coat length is listed at being between 1.9 - 2.54 cm (3/4 - 1 inch).  They differ mainly in color:

  • The Argente Bleu has a well-silvered "lavender blue" under-color
  • The Argente Brun has a "deep brown" under-color (see picture above)
  • The Argente Noir, being of a black undercolor, seems to differ from the Champagne d’Argent in size only.
  • The Argente St. Hubert is a black agouti-based rabbit. Parting the hairs on the silvered pelt reveals grey near the skin, a rich orange or rufous ring and black tips on those hair shafts that have not lost their pigment.

Argente Crème

The Argente Crème is the UK’s small version of the Crème d’Argent in the USA. The rabbits are very similar as to silvering and color, however the main difference between the continents is size. Argente Crèmes should weigh a petite 2.26 kg (5 pounds), while the Crème d’Argent in the USA weighs in at up to 11 pounds (5 kg). In the United States, they have commercial meat rabbit bodies with the delicious creamed orange color - "creamy white with an orange cast carried throughout" (ARBA Standard of Perfection).

Find the UK Breed Standard of excellence at the BRC.

Argente Brun in the USA: champagne dargent

Argente Brun rabbits became the 49th rabbit breed in the USA as of February 1, 2016, after the third showing of the Argente Brun was accepted at the 2015 ARBA National Convention. Senior Bucks should weigh 8-10 pounds; senior does should weigh 8.5 - 10.5 pounds. Color should reveal moderate, even silvering over a chocolate rabbit, with slightly darker muzzle and ears. The full standard of perfection is available through the ARBA.

Rabbits Need  to Chew - Get Them Chewable Rabbit Toys

Go from Champagne d'Argent to Rabbit Breed Descriptions

Explore the Raising-Rabbits Bunny Bazaar Marketplace

Is This Your Rabbit Breed?

Do you have a great story or experience with this breed of rabbits? Feel free to share it!

And while you're at it, you can include up to four photos.

What Other Visitors Have Said

Click below to see contributions from other visitors to this page...

I love rabbits 
I love the breed. I have also cross bred mine to NZ and got a doe that looks like a silver fox. the coat of the mix breed doe is not the same texture as …

Champagne babies 
Champagne babies are pretty funny while they are turning from black to silver and often look like they're wearing a mask. Babies are born all black and …

Champagne d' Argent Not rated yet
I have some of this breed. We have three of them and I love them. I am a young kid and I love to show rabbits. One of the Champagne d'Argent's I have …

Argente Brun Not rated yet
I have the COD for the Argente Brun through the ARBA. My Bruns passed their first showing at the ARBA National Convention last week, the 22 of October. …

Tiffany's Story of Champagne de Argent Not rated yet
When I first saw the Champagne de Argent breed I was fascinated with it. After 4 years my dad finally looked all over and found me some. I named the buck …

Click here to write your own.


  • ARBA Standards of Perfection

Double-Value Guarantee

Our policy is to always OVER-deliver on value,
which is why your purchase is fully covered by our
Double-Value Guarantee.

Go ahead - take any of our e-books for a test drive. Peruse our detailed informational and educational e-books. Examine our plans for building rabbit cages, runs, or metal or PVC hutch frames. Check out the Rabbit Husbandry info e-books.

If you aren't completely satisfied that your e-book purchase is worth at least double, triple or even quadruple the price you paid, just drop us a note within 45 days, and we'll refund you the entire cost. That's our Double-Value Guarantee.

Note: When you purchase your e-books, they will be in PDF format, so you can download them to any device that supports PDF format. We advise making a back-up copy to a drive or cloud account. If the books are lost, you can also purchase another copy from Raising-Rabbits.

New! Comments

Have your say about what you just read! Leave me a comment in the box below.