Signs of a Pregnant Doe

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Sav

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I have just gotten into breeding rabbits. Was wondering if there are any tell-tell signs of pregnancy, besides palpation?

My doe would currently be 29 days pregnant (lifted for my buck several times on July 1st) , however has yet to show any signs. Her stomach can be firm to the touch occasionally, however no other visible signs. No nesting activity and no abdominal increase (I’ve heard they begin this a week - a few days in advance). The only movement I can see in her stomach looks to be digestion (rolling motions).

Being that she’d shown no signs, a breeder friend of mine told me to place her with a buck and see her reaction. Upon doing so, she would squeak and run, although she did lift a few times. I’ve marked down dates just in case but was wondering everyone else’s thoughts?

My other worry was that she may be too young (just coming on 5 months, will be 6 months mid August; breeder told me that she would be ready to breed). She is a Mini Rex; am trying to get into showing and she has incredible fur type and density, so I’m very much so hoping she can produce at least one generation that has improved fur.
 

SableSteel

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There's not really a good way to tell besides palpation. At this age it should be really easy; you don't even need to really put pressure, just hold your hand there long enough and you should be able to feel babies kicking if she is pregnant. My rabbits never really look bigger, and they don't nest until right before labor, so there's no other good way to tell. Test breeding to a buck to see if she will still lift isn't really reliable imo Mini rex do mature faster than some larger breeds but that is still definitely on the young side, the youngest I'd breed a rabbit of mini rex size myself would be 5 and a half months.
 

Out of this world bunnies

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I breed mini rex rabbits as well, and some signs I notice are
Firm sides of her belly
more sensitive in that area and will tense up depending on where you touch
excessive shedding (LIKE A CRAZY AMOUNT)
and mine (this might just be her) but she usually has more accidents (as she is not spayed she isn't fully litter trained but she tries her best <3)
being really loud (with digging and scratching her hides or bedding, she only does this when she is preg)
mood swings sometiems she wants love and will make a TON of noise to get and sometimes she will run far far away and hide from me
i don't feel kicks and i never have in any of her pregnancies (which suprises me) but take advice from everyone and hear all the other opinions! hope this helps a bit <3
 

Sav

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Thank you both for your responses! I’ve deemed it thus far to be a waiting game! Will be waiting at least two months before re-attempting to breed her, if she isnt pregnant this time around!

Will keep this updated though, as the next few days pass. If first breeding took (she was very willing and had 5 fall offs July 1), she’s now on day 30! So within the next 5 days, if no kits, I’ll assume she’s not pregnant but will give two months because of the more recent breeding she lifted for.
 

Sav

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Update!

No babies this morning, on day 32. Her nipples, yesterday, were a bit crusty and she skipped around pellets and only had interest in her oats. Not sure if these could be signs? Will be checking over the next few days and deem her not pregnant on day 35 if nothing shows!
 

Preitler

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I frequently notice that they lose some appetite 1-2 days before kindling.
 

Mackenzie Salm

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She could be to young. Because I know the youngest you really should be breeding is 6 months so she could be to young yet but if she is almost 6 months it shouldn't be to big of a problem usually.
 

Sav

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Thank you all for your advice/input! She’s hit day 34 today and no kits, so guesses are she’s not pregnant. I’ll be leaving her nest box in until August 31 just in case the second breeding took. However there are no plans to rebreed until late September/early October where she’ll hit the 6 month mark!
 

Mackenzie Salm

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Hope she does ok! But I wouldn't leave the nest box in there until day 28 of the second breeding otherwise she might start using it as a litter box. Because you don't want the babies on the ground or her going to the bathroom on the babies. Best wishes!:)
 

Sav

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Ahhh, didn’t think of that! First time breeder, so very new to everything! Should I wait until she hits day 40 of her current “pregnancy” wait, or do you think it would be fine to remove it tomorrow afternoon (Day 35 since breeding #1)?
 
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