Rabbit Breeding Questions

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by PioneerPrincess, Nov 7, 2009.

  1. PioneerPrincess

    PioneerPrincess Chillin' With My Peeps

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    How do we tell if our female rabbit is pregnant? She is about 2 yrs old and she is a Californian/New Zealand cross. It has been thirty-one days since we have gotten and bred her. We keep her with our male. We put a nesting box in their filled with hay about a week ago. Both rabbits eat all the hay in a couple days and we fill it up again. What are signs that she would be ready to have her babies? Our male is a Dutch rabbit that our neighbors found. If she had babies is it true that he would eat them? We are breeding for meat and need to know as much as possible! Thank you for your help. [​IMG]
     
  2. texasgal

    texasgal Brood with an Attitude

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    In my experience, it is best if they are seperated. Not only can you control breeding dates better, there is NO chance he'll hurt the babies if he's NOT in the cage. [​IMG]

    Experienced breeders can palpate (feel) a rabbits belly and usually tell if there are babies in there.. If there are ALOT of babies, it's pretty obvious, but usually not until the last week or so.

    Have you seen them breed? Not just him TRYING, but have you actually seen them breed .. with the male usually squeeling and falling off to the side?

    If she were mine, I would remove the male, wait another 30 days .. and if no babies, then put her in his cage, watch them breed .. remove her .. repeat for several days or until she refuses .. and then count 28 days and place a box in her cage.

    Age may be a factor also .. if she's never bred, it might take a while to get a 2 year old rabbit to breed.

    Good luck!

    I'm sure you'll get more advise on here .. there are several rabbit breeders..
     
  3. ThePamperedPullet

    ThePamperedPullet Chillin' With My Peeps

    When your doe is about ready to have her litter she will pull fur out to line her nest. It is best to seperate your doe to give her the least amount of stress as some does will kill and eat their babies as a defense. I would take the buck out and put him in his own cage. If you hold your doe with its head toward your body and your hand under its belly many times you can feel the babies moving around. Only breed your doe a maximum of 3 times per year. More than that and it over stresses their bodies. With your buck and doe together, how often do they try to mate? Most of my does would not want to be prego in the winter so I would seperate them from about October until about February. With a good breeding pair, you could be over run with rabbits pretty quickly. My best doe would throw litters of 12 to 14 consistently. I just got tired of what to do with all the pelts.
     
  4. Okay...

    If she is 2 years old and this is her first litter she may not be able to concieve or deliver. The pelvis of rabbits is said to fuse after 1 year of age thus why breeders breed prior to then.

    When breeding rabbits you always bring the doe to the bucks cage, never the other way around. You place doe with buck, usually if she is in the mood and fancies him she will lay flat out and lift her tail, ear back in submission, etc. He will mount her, probe around a couple of times, thrust once or twice really hard and then fall off the doe onto his side, like he had a heart attack and died, just bloomp off he goes. Some squeal, some do not. All I have had immeadiately get up and stomp their back feet repeatedly for several minutes. I then pick up my does and hold them in the crook of my arm to prevent them from urinating and washing away the semen. I hold them for 15 minutes.

    In an hour or two I do the same thing all over again. I mark my calendar that she was bred on this day. I then put the doe back into her cage alone for the next 12 hours.

    Usually the next morning, I will bring doe back to buck to see if she is still receptive to him.
    If she tries to attack him flat out and makes all sort of noises, she has usually taken and is pregnant. Back to her cage and I now count 31 days on my barn calendar and mark it for the day she will be due. On day 28 I give a nest box.

    If I bring her back to the buck the next morning and she does not attack him, I have two options. I can bring her back to her cage and palpate her at 10 days to be certain she is not pregnant or I can let him breed her again right then and repeat everything all over.

    You do not want to breed you doe over several days, there should be no more than 12 hours between breedings as then the doe can get pregnant with TWO LITTERS in BOTH HORNS of her uterus which is not good at all.
    To understand this, you have to think that rabbits are induced ovulators. They do not go into heat, the very presence of the bucks semen is what makes them ovulate, within 12 hours of the first successful mating.
     
  5. PioneerPrincess

    PioneerPrincess Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you for all the info! We were wondering why our buck did that when breeding. We thought the doe was somehow kicking him off. [​IMG] Yes, we did put the doe into the buck's pen. We actually have had our male for about two and a half years. Our friends gave us the doe. The doe doesn't like to be held so when we grab her and try to feel, she stiffens up making it harder to tell. Once we get rabbit cages we'll be able to do better. Thank you again!!! [​IMG]
     
  6. mekasmom

    mekasmom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:You do need to separate them. She will either bite the male or kill the babies if they are together at the birth. It works in a colony, but only if there is sufficient room and lots of hiding areas (nest boxes) for the does/bunnies. I have never had a male hurt the bunnies, but the females don't like males close to them. And if a female gets too nervous, she will eat her own babies.
     
  7. PioneerPrincess

    PioneerPrincess Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Our female rabbit has had a major attitude change today. Every time she sees us, she runs around her pen crazily, dodging from one side of their house to the other. She doesn't grunt while doing this. Does it mean she is going to kindle soon? She hasn't pulled any fur. Also, she is still with our male. We'll take him or her out if need be. Why would she change her attitude so suddenly? Thanks for your help!! [​IMG]
     
  8. millebantam

    millebantam Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Little Rhody
    If she is in fact, due to kindle soon, the change in behavior that you now notice will soon be transfered to that innocent, unsuspecting buck. Other experienced posters in this thread have advised you to remove the buck but it appears that you have made up your mind not to. I fear that there will be a new topic in this section in the near future that is titled " My doe killed her babies and I have no idea why."
     
  9. chinbunny

    chinbunny In a hutch

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    Did you know a doe can easily castrate a buck when she gets fed up with him trying to breed her. Or he mounts her the wrong way (the head). All it takes is bite from her to do the deed. ' That is something to consider if you chose to keep them together.

    I woul dget him out of there into his own cage. You will find she will breed a lot better when she is away from him.
     
  10. PioneerPrincess

    PioneerPrincess Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We have finally separated our buck and doe. Now we'll wait at least twenty-eight days and see what happens. Thank ya'll for all your advice! [​IMG]
     

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