What is the Rabbit golf game?

This is a simple game for three or four players based on winning holes outright

rabbit
(Image credit: Getty Images)

In this game for three of four players, the players who walk off the 9th and 18th green with the rabbit win equal shares of the stake money

The Rabbit golf game works on much the same principle as the Snake betting game  (opens in new tab)does. However unlike the snake, players want to have possession of the rabbit.

The players who walk off the 9th and 18th green with the rabbit wins equal shares of the stake money. In Snake the person who walks off the final green with the snake has a forfeit.

Rabbit can be played by three- or fourballs. It is probably more popular with threeballs.

Fourballs have more options as to which game they can play. Also with a threeball there is more chance of a hole being won outright, which is the main driver of the game.

There are several variations on the rules. But all versions start from the same point: the rabbit is captured by the first player to win a hole outright.

This player then holds onto the rabbit for as long as no-one else wins a hole outright. What happens when someone else does win a hole outright is where the variations differ.

In one version, the rabbit is set free. In the other, the outright winner of the hole takes possession of the rabbit.

If you are playing the version whereby the rabbit is set free, then it remains free until it is captured by someone wining a hole outright.

The variation of the game that misses out the step of setting the rabbit free does mean that the rabbit is always in someone’s possession once it is first captured.

This is important as one of the purposes of the game is to be holding the rabbit after you exit the 9th green as that wins half the stake money. The other half of the stake money is paid out to the person who has it at the end of the game.

The problem is that the rabbit may be free when the players leave the 9th green. In that case, all the stake money goes to whoever holds the rabbit at the end of the game.

Contributing Writer Golf courses and travel are Roderick’s particular interests and he worked as contributing editor for the first few years of the Golf Monthly Travel Supplement. He writes travel articles and general features for the magazine, travel supplement and website. He is a member of Trevose Golf & Country Club and has played golf in around 20 countries. Cricket is his other main sporting love. He is the author of five books, four of which are still in print: The Novel Life of PG Wodehouse; The Don: Beyond Boundaries; Wally Hammond: Gentleman & Player and England’s Greatest Post-War All Rounder.