I got two bunnies!! My first bunnies ever!

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by BarkerChickens, May 24, 2010.

  1. BarkerChickens

    BarkerChickens Microbrewing Chickenologist

    Nov 25, 2007
    High Desert, CA
    I got two bunnies today. [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] They are Californian crosses...the guy said they are mixed with Rex, but his breeding pair are both Californian crosses as well. They are so cute!!! Right now they are inside, but they will eventually be moved out to the brooder pen, which is 8' x 24', fully covered and has chain link with 1/2" hard wire cloth all around it. The bottom is hard dirt (our dirt here is like concrete), but if they dig, we'll have to extend the hard wire cloth onto the ground (covered with dirt, of course).

    I have never had rabbits. These are two little bucks. Without a female to fight over, will they still have issues with each other? Our vet will see chickens, rabbits, etc., so we can get them neutered if necessary. It just costs $140 per buck. [​IMG] But...I am not oppose to it if the benefits are worth it.

    I need to get pics of them! The little black (with some white) one is calm, but the little gray and white one is one curious little bugger! [​IMG] Both are cuddly, but the little gray one runs around the house checking everything out the second you set it down!

    We heard that hay is good for them, in addition to pellets. We garden, so they'll get lots of veggies too.

    Any tips that you think I should be aware of? [​IMG]

    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    edited to add...we live a desert. Our intention is to give them frozen 2-liter bottles when it is too hot outside. I have read that they will lay on them. Their pen is shaded too by a raised brooder coop and the grapes and blackberries that grow over the pen.

    It's a good day!! We have two baby chicks that our broodies hatched too!! [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 24, 2010
  2. iajewel

    iajewel Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 22, 2008
    Corning IA
    There is a nice group on yahoo for colony rabbits.. which is what you are doing.. and 2 bucks will kill each other.. doe or no does to fight over. I have a 2lb Polish buck that when in the chicken pen ( a very large out door pen HUGE) will try and kill my Muscovy Drake because he has nothing else to attack. Rabbits are not as cute and cuddly as you may think. I raise and show Flemish Giants and some dutch crosses for agility and hopping. I love them, however I know my limits with them. That yahoo group may be a good idea for a first time rabbit owner.
    Good luck with your new friends.. rabbits are awesome!
     
  3. BarkerChickens

    BarkerChickens Microbrewing Chickenologist

    Nov 25, 2007
    High Desert, CA
    Thanks, iajewel! I will check it out. I may just plan on having them neutered then. [​IMG]

    I'd rather neuter two boys at $140 a pop, then 2 girls at $185! [​IMG]
     
  4. LV426

    LV426 Chillin

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    Jul 16, 2008
    You may be able to find it cheaper if you call your local humane society. I was able to get my rabbit neutered for $50.

    My rabbit has a big dog waterer that he drinks out of and most rabbits will drink more out of a dish than they will a water bottle so you may try giving them a watering dish and not a bottle especially when it's hot. They will dig out. Rabbits love to dig so you might want to go ahead and extend that fencing down or put hog wire down on the bottom of your pen. The squares are big enough that grass and weeds can grow through but a rabbit can't get out.

    A good pellet diet and lots of timothy hay is what I use and then I have a foraging area outside with dandelions, fescues, plantains, wheat grasses and clover. You can buy small packets of grazing plant seeds online and sow them in your pen.

    A good website is http://www.raising-rabbits.com/
     
  5. BarkerChickens

    BarkerChickens Microbrewing Chickenologist

    Nov 25, 2007
    High Desert, CA
    LV247, thanks!! How far down should I trench the fencing wire? I think it goes down a few inches now, but not anything significant. I'd rather put in a day of digging trenches, then risking an escaped rabbit (one long side goes into the main chicken pen, so that wouldn't be too bad, but the other long side goes into the garden...rabbits and gardens are a BAD combo!! I don't know much, but that I do know!). I was planning giving them a water dish as well. We already have them, whereas, we'd have to buy a water bottle.

    As for the humane society suggestion...thank you so much!! I will definitely call them! $50 each would be great!
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2010
  6. iajewel

    iajewel Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 22, 2008
    Corning IA
    Quote:Seriously I don't see how they can charge that much.. if you find someone that does cattle or hogs.. I promise you they can do it cheaper.. for like a 6 pack. I do my own as we do keep colony rabbits only and I have my hoppers and agility buns in the large yard all together so the boys have to be safe with the girls.. Its not that hard to do, however you have to have the stomach for it. If you have never castrated anything before I highly suggest you ask someone who has, to do it for you. If you cut the toe out of a sock then they can't see, or move their front legs when you slip the sock over them. This is how we tattoo etc. Makes life grand.

    This may be more than a pet owner wants to hear? but.. if your up to it, its fast and painless if you do it. They heal really well just cage them for a few days and make sure they are healed pretty well before you turn them out with the group more for infection sake ( they are low to the ground and can get dirt poop etc in there not like a cow or pig or horse that is above ground)

    Im waiting for my boy friend to get back so he can hold my Polish buck who has decided to try and kill my drake. Everyone involved will be so happy when little With changes his tune. It really does make that much difference.
     
  7. iajewel

    iajewel Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 22, 2008
    Corning IA
    Quote:Rabbits can get out of a hog panel or normal fencing wire. Even my huge Flemish can get through a hog panel or fencing wire. I use the 1x3" pheasant wire and have never had a rabbit dig out, nor have I ever buried wire. I also rock the corners and place a box or ground shelter in the center of the pen ( 20x20 pen are my average pens.) so that when they do dig its in the middle not at the fence. I also fill in allot of holes in the spring, they dig allot just before they kit so about 2 weeks into the pregnancy I remove them and put them in a 8x4 hutch. This pretty much eliminates any burrows. I do keep an eye on how deep holes are getting. Normally I can just move the dirt back with my foot. Does dig way way more then bucks. I actually have never seen a buck dig other then to get to a doe, or fight with another buck. We are talking about 18-20lb rabbits here, and the Flemish do have different personalities as well.. My rabbits actually prefer just to lay out in the grass and pretend they are on a beach somewhere. I also rotate pens like you would a cattle pasture. I re-seed and allow the ground to rest so its healthy.

    Here are some pics of the pens if you like
    www.pet-rabbit.net

    We have been colony raising This breed for about 6years now in the pens you see. Other "yards" aren't shown on the site yet.
     
  8. Rainstorm

    Rainstorm Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 25, 2009
    Lake Placid FLorida
    How old are the bucks? If you raise them together or if they have been raised together it is beyond not true that they WILL kill eachother, I house many of my males together (that were raised together) and havnt had even one problem yet
     
  9. iajewel

    iajewel Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 22, 2008
    Corning IA
    how many years have the same bucks been together?
     
  10. LV426

    LV426 Chillin

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    Jul 16, 2008
    Rabbits can dig. I mean they should hire rabbits to dig trenches especially mine because he can dig a 4 foot burrow in no time. I think he just melts the dirt away some days. lol

    I've never had a problem with hog wire but if someone else has then go for something smaller. Mainly you do have to worry about the edges and corners because that's where they like to dig and are more likely to escape.


    As for the person who says you can keep males raised together and have no fighting. Well ok maybe you have had no problems but I've seen what angry bunnies can do to each other and it's not pretty. Unaltered males and females have both attacked their cage mates even when raised together. Maybe yours will be just fine but to me $50 is worth not coming home and finding bloody carnage in my rabbit cage. Not only can your rabbits be vicious to each other but they can be vicious to you. They have teeth and will use them. Intact rabbits have a higher aggression factor than altered rabbits. Now I know someone out there is going to insist that they have hundreds of intact rabbits and they all get along fine with everything and everyone and they don't attack. But since I bear a scar from a doe that got hormonal I'm taking the "neuter/spay" your rabbit if it's a pet. I also think the stink factor goes down for males when you neuter them and since I keep an indoor bunny that's all good for me.
     

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