Advice on Mini-Rex bunnies please!

kellyjo8437

Songster
8 Years
Sep 19, 2011
102
74
151
Dunnellon
I have a neighbor who has given me 2 unwanted 7-9 week mini-rex bunnies. One is male, one female. Problem is neither are altered and this person was housing them in the same dog crate together hoping they would of sold by now.
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They are brother and sister as well. I have a few fears now. I may have just accepted a very young, pregnant female. Any safe ways to tell if they have paired? I do not have the money to take these to a Vet given Christmas has just passed. I have placed both bunnies in a cage with a divider so they can still see and hear each other at least. If this little girl is pregnant I am worried about her tiny little body. Also is incest acceptable in rabbits? I think it's called line-breeding in poultry. The bunnies are pure bred and parents have papers so I doubt seriously I'll have any trouble rehoming cute free little winter bunnies I'm just worried about genetic problems and the young mama. Any advice? Thanks and Happy Holidays
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erinszoo

Songster
8 Years
Jun 28, 2011
1,923
105
178
North Central Oklahoma
The only thing you can do is wait and see if she is preggers. It's pretty doubtful though as she isn't mature yet and probably won't be able to reproduce for a couple of months still. Rabbits breeding to siblings isn't a problem until it's done over and over for a few generations as far as I know, then you can get some genetic problems showing up. They should be fine in separate cages. And if she is pregnant somehow if her body isn't big enough to support the babies, they won't grow and she will reabsorb them. Can you ask the person you got them from for more information on keeping them?
 

Kevin565

Crowing
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Dec 22, 2009
43,520
713
486
It's a good thing you separated them. I believe she is still to young to be pregnant but not for much longer. Also to clarify brothers and sisters are not commonly used in line breeding. It often ruins the gene pool. It's more often parent to offspring or cousins.
 

Baymule

Crowing
11 Years
Jul 1, 2010
2,146
505
326
Northeast Texas
A first generation brother/sister cross shouldn't give any hereditary problems. Constant inbreeding does produce undesirable defects. your bunnies should be ok and just put a nest box in for her and treat like any other momma bunny to be.
 

kellyjo8437

Songster
8 Years
Sep 19, 2011
102
74
151
Dunnellon
The previous owner did not give me much advice or information. I think he viewed me as preachy or overzealous since I am considerably younger. I dunno. I may be overzealous but I feel bad for unwanted animals that are just cast aside cause they did not sell well or fast enough.... I got some food from Walmart. I also gave them a leaf from the collard greens I feed my Dragon. I'll look at making a box this weekend. Would the male like one as well? He just had them in a small dog crate without the pan so the poo fell through to the grass. I put some hay in each cage so they could stay warm. I have googled some things and listed the male on the local give away site
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Thanks everyone.
 

Bunnylady

POOF Goes the Pooka
12 Years
Nov 27, 2009
18,762
9,796
661
Wilmington, NC
Rabbit does usually aren't capable of conceiving before 12 weeks of age. Bucks typically become fertile a little later, at about 14 weeks. As long as they get separated by the time they are 10 weeks old, there shouldn't be any problems with an unwanted pregnancy. However (isn't there always a "however"?), rabbits are capable of breeding through wire - don't ask me how they do it, but I know from experience that they can - so a solid divider or some space between the cages may be necessary to prevent future surprises of that sort. And as others have said, full-sibling crosses aren't the usual thing, but it shouldn't be a problem unless carried on for more than one generation.

I'm less than thrilled at the idea of a breeder that thinks that bunnies that are still around at 7 - 9 weeks old have been there too long. Most of the breeders I know won't sell a pet rabbit younger than 8 weeks. While rabbits younger than that may be eating very well, they are much more susceptible to stress, and more likely to die without the new owner ever noticing that something was wrong. You can't imagine how many times I've heard "we bought a rabbit for the kids at Easter, but it died a week later."
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chickbea

Songster
13 Years
Jan 18, 2007
2,181
21
201
Vermont
Is your neighbor a breeder? In my humble and non-solicited opinion, he needs to stop breeding his buns!
There are great bunny websites out there - I'm not going to list any because there are some fanatical bunny breeders on this site who have attacked me in the past, but if you look you'll find them. There is a great difference of opinion in the handling/feeding of pet rabbits and house rabbits as opposed to meat and show rabbits, so gear your search towards whatever role you plan the buns to fill.
Bunnies love toys, so try to be creative in keeping them entertained, especially if they are caged. Commercially produced bunny toys are expensive and not always entertaining, but things like old catalogs and newspapers to rip and strip are good, and they also love little things they can pick up in their mouths and throw around - small tin cans, lids, sticks, rings, etc. Bunnies are active - if you don't entertain them, they will entertain themselves, generally by destroying something near and dear to your heart!
There are a million and one opinions and articles about rabbit diets, so you'll have some reading to do there as well.
 

kellyjo8437

Songster
8 Years
Sep 19, 2011
102
74
151
Dunnellon
This neighbor sells rabbits and fowl, he has two sets of mini rexes and I have been told he has been doing it since I was in diapers. He does not however like to feed extra animals. He and I have butted heads in the past. He culls rooster as they are a waste of feed and it breaks my heart so we have a deal, I take them and house them and list them on the free give away sites here. Now I know for a fact that a few of these roosters ended up in a pot, but to me it's better then just wasting them and saying they are totally worthless. I do understand that some folks feel this way, that the boys waste feeds etc, but since I have the time and space I try and collect any unwanteds before they are destroyed by him. These are the first thing I have taken that is non chicken related though. He has been grumbling about the waste of food they have caused him so I offered to take them and said I would be more then willing to feed them and rehome them. I have noticed they do like toys!!! I read online to give them some pine cones and they fling them around like tennis balls
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I'm not sure what kind of "role" they will have truthfully. I was planning on rehoming the male asap. The female I was going to wait a month to see if in fact she is preggers as I don't want to drop that on to someone. I may keep the doe, but it's doubtful as I don't feel I have the time to give her. She has a great personality, they both do, they're very sweet.
 

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