Any Tips For first time breeders

Discussion in 'The Rabbitry and Show Room' started by Athena, Apr 9, 2018.

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  1. Apr 9, 2018 #1

    Athena

    Athena

    Athena

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    Hello, so I was just wondering if anyone who has experience breeding Rabbits can give me some tips on breeding them and what to look for after the babies are born?
    I’ve done plenty of research (A whole binder full of information about breeding and taking care of the bunnies) but would like to hear what more experienced breeders have to say. Any main reasons I shouldn’t breed?

    My two bunnies are sweethearts
    IMG_8507.jpg

    This is Everest he’s the buck
    IMG_8446.jpg

    This is Jupiter The doe
    IMG_8512.jpg
     
  2. Apr 9, 2018 #2

    Cookiemonster

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    KEEP RECORDS!!!!
     
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  3. Apr 9, 2018 #3

    Aki

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    Considering you ask, I think here are a few questions one should ask themselves before breeding : Why are you breeding? Are those rabbits well-bred by serious breeders and do you have background infos about their ancestors and their health? Are you going to provide good quality representants of a particular breed with this pairing? Have those rabbits been shown and received good appreciation from judges?
    If the answer to even one of those questions is 'no', I don't think you should. Frankly speaking, there are more than enough mutts (cats, dogs, rats... anything most people breed for fun, really) with possible hidden health problems already. So much so that we kill a lot of them each and every year in shelters. I'm not saying tha mixed breed rabbits are bad or anything, one of mine is. I love her to death, but I would never have considered breeding her before spaying. Breeding should only be done to better a particular breed chosen after careful consideration by building thought out pairings with the help of experienced breeders and by going to shows to learn how to recognize nice subjects, meet a lot of breeders and nicely bred rabbits, and be able to pick out rabbits that will nicely balance each other out. I suggest you read those articles and think long and hard about this:
    https://rabbit.org/category/breeding/

    (also, just checking but... you know why it would be better for your female to be spayed quickly and why, right? Considering the amount of research you say you've done, I suppose you do but... please, think about this too)
     
  4. Apr 9, 2018 #4

    Jojo and chocolate

    Jojo and chocolate

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    Before the babies are born make sure to take out the dad or they will mate again and kill the babies while matting and never touch the babies until they don't need milk anymore or she will kill them or stop feeding them also make her a nest or put things she can make a nest with and if the room or the cage has holes fix the hole or for cage git wire and make sure the babies can not get through it.
     
  5. Apr 9, 2018 #5

    Preitler

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    The first thing you should have before breeding is a plan for what to do with the offspring. Most likely, you cant keep them.

    Finding a new home can be difficult, even if they weren't some mutts (all my rabbits are mutts, I don't care to breed for a special appearance, but for other traits, like health and character).
    Don't be too sure that people who say "Sure, I would like a pet bunny" don't get wiser when it comes to actually taking on a 10 year responsibility, I wouldn't ask anyone to take a rabbit to do me a favour.
    Although any rabbit is meat too, imho with this small breeds it isn't worth the bother, and I don't think you want to advertise free snake food on the internet.

    Other than that, keeping records (of every breeding, maybe also behaviour changes, appetite...) got already mentioned. More Info helps later on - my does lose some appetite 1-2 days prior kindling.
    Be ready to get up every other hour and check on her when she's due, it's not always smooth running with first timers, some are somewhat confused and get the the sequence wrong, like pulling the fur too late, or not going into the nestbox in time (or not staying there) etc.

    Put aside some money for a vet visit, better to have it and not need it than the other way round.

    Be sure to have enough space available to keep doe and buck, female and male kits apart. I keep the girls with mom, no problem, with bucks it's another thing after 8-12 weeks (depending on size/breed).

    When sexing the kits, do it several times, and get a second opinion even when you think you are sure.

    Just be sure what and why, since you've read up I don't think you're one of those who get this weird expression on their face whenever thinking about littly, fluffy baby bunnies ;)

    Edit: Yeah - making the cage baby bunny tight is good advise, they are small, and other than adults they can climb pretty well.
    That "don't touch them" is a myth though, maybe true for hares or deer, but rabbits absolutly don't care if you handle the kits. Well, at least they don't care the smell, some might protect the nest aggressivly, simple put those out of sight while handling the kits. But check the nest asap and put any kits that are not in there in.
     
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2018
  6. Apr 9, 2018 #6

    Cookiemonster

    Cookiemonster

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    Do you have any specific questions you need answers to??
     
  7. Apr 9, 2018 #7

    Blue eyes

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    " Any main reasons I shouldn’t breed? "

    Aki and Prietler already mentioned some things to consider before breeding. The following article is also packed with relevant information as well. I've quoted part of the article below but please read the full article before even considering breeding.
    http://www.rabbitadoption.org/breed.html

    There are reasons to breed, very valid ones such as breeding because you want to better a particular breed. If you are going to breed to make money, don't waste your time. Breeding is done because of a love of the breed, not for profit.
    You should not breed rabbits from a pet store or from a person who allowed their mixed breed rabbits have young. Quality rabbits come with a pedigree, were you given one? Have you researched the genetics of the parent's colors so you are going to get "showable" colors? Excellent quality rabbits cost money and can take time to find, can you spend the money and time? Have you researched your area so that you know that the breed you are considering is one that owners in your area actually are interested in? Are you willing to spay or neuter any pet quality rabbits or rabbits with genetic problems before selling so they do not reproduce? How will you place these rabbits, what does it cost to advertise, are you set up to keep any babies that don't sell, etc...? (A pet store should not be an option in 99.9% of the cases!)


    Again, I'd strongly encourage you to read the full article. I'd also encourage you to check with some local vets and see if any are truly rabbit-savvy. Check the prices for a spay and a neuter. Is that something you're willing to pay for any of those rabbits whose genetics aren't up to par (to prevent them from breeding) even if sold for a pet?

    ...just some things worthy of consideration.
     
  8. Apr 15, 2018 #8

    woahlookitsme

    woahlookitsme

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    I agree with all of the above. You have to have a reason for why you want to breed and you have to be responsible about it.

    You need to make sure you will also be mentally prepared if the babies die or even if Mom dies. It does happen and my mom and I have had it happen to us.

    I really appreciate that you have come here to ask and it says a lot that you would ask for opinions. We are not anti breeder because I myself showed and bred rabbits for over 8 years but we just want those choosing to breed to do it for the right reasons and to have a plan and even more backup plans.
     
  9. Apr 15, 2018 #9

    Bribble

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    Your breeding pair is adorable! The people above have made some very good points. One thing I didn't see people mention is if the mother doesn't accept the kits. This has happened a few times, so I try and always have at least 2 does kindling around the same time. That way if one doe for some reason won't accept the kits (can happen to first time mothers), there's always a foster mom around. Or if you have any friends that breed rabbits, you could possibly get a foster mom from them too.

    Definitely be a responsible breeder, and remember that some pairs just aren't meant to be. I had a friend get a new buck for her breeding program and he was show quality, but the babies he produced were, for lack of better words, terrible. Within one litter there was a fully blind rabbit and one who's ear lopped across the top of his head instead of down. If anything odd like this happens I wouldn't continue to breed them.

    Like others have said, breed for a reason. If you just want more fluffy rabbits running around, there's plenty in the shelters. I wouldn't get my hopes up if you're breeding for profit either. There's only so many people in an area that want rabbits, and most don't want more than one or two.
     
  10. Apr 15, 2018 #10

    Cookiemonster

    Cookiemonster

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    if you have any specific questions feel free to message me!!
     
  11. Apr 20, 2018 #11

    bluebird

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    No you shouldnt breed them ,they are two different breeds.mixed breeds are much harder to find homes for.and if the people who took them dont want them anymore be pepared to take them back.if the mother decides not to feed them you will have to.its very difficult to bottle feed rabbits.there is a risk in breeding a doe.sometimes the babies die,sometimes the mother has trouble.stuck babies ,intetnal bleeding.milk fever,mastitis.even death.
     
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  12. Apr 20, 2018 #12

    bluebird

    bluebird

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    Some does have a personailty change after they give birth ,your sweet pet may become unfrienfly aggresive and protective of her bsbies.
     
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  13. Apr 20, 2018 #13

    bluebird

    bluebird

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    Im not against breeding,just informing you of the many things that can go wrong.
     
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  14. May 10, 2018 #14

    LionheadRabbitLover

    LionheadRabbitLover

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    They’re beautiful! I think they’ll make great babies. I had a mixed breed litter once by accident (Lionhead X Dwarf Hotot) and all of them found great homes. Make sure you start advertising them before they’re ready to go. That way they find homes quickly once they’re ready to go.
     
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