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Holland Lop Question?

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by quailbrain, Jan 14, 2010.

  1. quailbrain

    quailbrain Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a holland lop doe. We have the oppurtunity to breed her and keep all but one of the kits. She has been breed once before and had the kits on the wire instead of her nest box around 9 months old. I am being pressed to breed her again but wonder if she should be breed again or not. I'm not worried about the kits needing homes as we would be able to keep them properly but how does this breeding back thing work with rabbits? If she didn't do well with her first would she be OK with a second litter?
     
  2. Bunnylady

    Bunnylady POOF Goes the Pooka

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    Your doe, your decision on whether you want to breed her. I assume the owner of the buck wants a baby as a "stud fee?" As the person who will be caring for the prospective litter, I think you should be the one who wants the breeding, not the other way 'round!


    As you found out, breeding rabbits isn't quite as easy as some people think it is.[​IMG] If it makes you feel any better about your doe, I usually consider anything that you get from a first litter as "gravy," because most does manage to mess up the first time. If she were my doe, I'd have bred her within a couple of days of that lost litter. I'd have watched her like a hawk when the kits were due, probably even brought her cage into the house so I could really keep an eye on her. Some does seem determined to make a nest in some other place than the nestbox. If she's one of those, I'd stuff her cage with hay, so there wouldn't be any place where the babies wouldn't be cushioned and surrounded with hay. I've had quite a few out-of-box litters survive when these precautions were taken. If the doe does kindle outside her nestbox, I would just wait until she's done, then move the litter and as much of her nest as I could into the nestbox. Some does figure out what to do on their own, but some need a little help. I have even had a few does that didn't seem to understand that they have to nurse those kiddos, but even they eventually got the hang of the motherhood thing!
     
  3. quailbrain

    quailbrain Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I kinda want babies (who doesn't!) and would be fine with keeping the litter. She is a beautiful tri-colored holland lop rabbit and if she only had one and the stud fee went to them then I would be fine with raising a baby for 8 weeks too. I have two concerns.... one the kits and two her. I don't want to do this in a manner that her health wont be jeopardized and kits wont suffer.

    It sounds as though breeding her again would be ok on her physically and she will learn ...possibly.... to take care of them this time. So I guess that answers one of my concerns.

    Last time she made an elaborate nest (I was very impressed actually) in the box just didn't birth in it and I missed the birth just a bit short. The kit of 4 that was alive was very cold. I warmed him up and put a warm jar of water in the box when he started to move around but he died within the next 5 hours.

    So if I were to breed her this time and watched her, and lined the entire cage too (great idea as dumb as I feel for not considering that first off) maybe it would work out better this time.

    How do you know when a doe should not be breed again? Is there a sign that tells you that she will never be a good mum? How many times do you try a doe at a litter before you reach the point of removing her from ever being a mum? I have learned a lot from reading and have been told much but I want to make sure the answers I have are right and the best for her not for the best of the person wanting to get a kit from her.
     
  4. NewHopePoultry

    NewHopePoultry Overrun With Chickens

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    I will try a doe twice, if she fails being a good mom the 2nd time,then she is done.
    Alot of does do have problems with the 1st litter and its not uncommon for them to die,but if she fails the 2nd time,then I wouldnt risk doing it again.
    If your heart isnt in it 100% then dont breed.
     
  5. Bunnylady

    Bunnylady POOF Goes the Pooka

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    Breeding is not without risk. While most litters are raised without any problem at all, I have lost a few does to problems specifically related to pregnancy or nursing. Of course, I have lost rabbits to many causes that had nothing to do with breeding, too!

    As to how many times to try with a doe, I would ask, how badly do you want babies from her? Someone who is breeding for meat wouldn't want to waste time on an unproductive animal, whereas someone who is breeding a pet or for show rabbits might be keeping her in any case, so it isn't as big a deal if she doesn't "pull her weight."If dead bunnies are just a disappointment to you, I'd say, let her try until she gets it right. If dead kits are heartbreak and tragedy to you, maybe you'd be better off not putting yourself (and her) through it!

    I had a Jersey Wooly that I had to re-breed several times before she raised a litter. If she had made total hash of things twice, I'd have quit at two, but each time she got closer to getting it right, so I kept thinking "next time will be the one!" When she finally had "warm and wigglies" in her nestbox, I could have cheered!

    There are many reasons for removing a doe from the gene pool. I had a Mini Rex doe that would kindle a nice litter of 6 or7, but only manage to raise 1 or 2. After this had happened a couple of times, I got really, intensively involved with the next litter, to see if I could figure out what was going on. It turned out that this doe only had 2 functional teats, the rest of her udder wasn't producing any milk at all. After all that "interference" from me, the doe abandoned her litter, and I wound up having to foster them on another doe. I bred her only a couple times after that, always at the same time as several other does, and let someone else raise her babies. Fortunately, this doe had a friendly personality. Once I had gotten "the keeper" from her, I gave her away to a pet home.
     
  6. Angelic Vampyre

    Angelic Vampyre Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I personally would not breed her but that is me, I think there are enough rabbits out there that need homes without adding more. However at someone else said you doe your choice.

    A few things, how old is she? I know breeders who say do no breed after the 3 year age mark. Also I don't like wire cages floors for rabbits, nice for you to clean horrible for her feet and hocks and if she was unsure that she was going into labour then manybe she did not know that she was going to deliver so that is why she had them on the wire.

    Also if you keep them please don't breedback, I know breeders who do it but my rabbit vet is shocked by it and says that it causes alot of issues. You will then have to keep and bucks away from any does and even if they are all raised together there might be fighting between the does themselves or the bucks last thing you want is to come out and find animals passed away.
     

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