Rabbit doe not gathering hay means not pregnant?

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by Moochie, Feb 11, 2014.

  1. Moochie

    Moochie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a doe due soon and I caught her gathering hay 3 days ago, I moved her into her birthing area (nest box, plenty of hay, greens, fresh water, away from her sisters) but now she isn't trying to make a nest anymore. This is my first time with rabbits so I'm wondering if this is normal with rabbits? I'm just worried is all, she did start creating a nest but the second day in her birthing area she stopped and just lounges on top of her nest box, eats the hay, eats everything else, regular rabbit stuff. I do know she growls like crazy at my buck Ferd and will not allow me to gently palpate. This will be her first litter.

    I tried asking this on several other rabbit forums and Facebook groups to no avail, my threads either got locked or I got a warning, and plenty of rude people bickering at me and talking to me like I am stupid. I got two of my rabbits from a show, they are good quality, papered, I'm currently looking for a papered Holland lop doe, hopefully I can mention that here without being lynched. If not could someone link me to a reliable rabbit forum where people (the users) are not crazy animal rights activists? Really, one thread on another forum got over 46 views but no one answered except a moderaror who repeadetly stated I should get my rabbits altered. I wonder if these people use picket signs at rabbit shows too? I respect your right to rescue but please respect my right to a hobby and new found passion. Thank you.
     
  2. Bunnylady

    Bunnylady POOF Goes the Pooka

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    Wilmington, NC
    Hey, Moochie![​IMG]

    IME, a doe that is gathering hay is pregnant, or at least thinks she is. Exactly when she starts nest making varies with the doe, but it's usually within a few days of kindling. Some does constantly rearrange the hay; some seem satisfied with their first efforts and leave it at that. Some does will start fur pulling well before the litter comes, others wait until afterward. Until you have some experience with that particular doe, you can't be sure what her pattern will be.

    If your doe has been gathering hay, she is most likely due to kindle within the next few days. Some people have noticed that their does go off their feed the day before they kindle, but that isn't set in stone either.

    Sometimes doe experience a false pregnancy. They may go through all the actions related to being pregnant, even making a nest and pulling fur, but produce nothing. Hopefully, that's not the case here.

    Fingers crossed for a good litter, and a good mom![​IMG]
     
  3. Dutchgirl

    Dutchgirl Not Dutch!

    Apr 1, 2008
    U.S.A.
    Because she did start gathering hay, it's likely that she is pregnant. She may have stopped because she was moved, but hopefully she will have become accustomed to it by the time she kindles. I know one of my does always scares me and doesn't make a nest until the night she has the babies, but it's almost always been perfect when she finally does make it.
     
  4. Moochie

    Moochie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you so much for answering. :)
    She still has not kindled yet but is showing promise. I put hay into the nest box to encourage her and she goes in re-arranges, takes naps, goes in to re-arrange again.. etc. Lol. She is eating a lot more and growls at the buck. Have never heard a rabbit growl until yesterday.. thought it was the chicken at first.
     
  5. Moochie

    Moochie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    A week and still no babies. False pregnancy? What should I do now?
     
  6. Dutchgirl

    Dutchgirl Not Dutch!

    Apr 1, 2008
    U.S.A.
    Do you mean it's been a week since the due date? If so... I would assume it was a false pregnancy. Did you palpate her at 2 weeks (or anytime) - if so, what were the results?
     
  7. Moochie

    Moochie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    UPDATE : She had 6 kits and now they're a week old. My other two kindled during the weekend! Sorry I couldn't update sooner! Will post pics once the kits open their eyes and start becoming more adventurous. Right now they stay in all the fluff. They're all first time moms and they're doing great. Each pulled their fur, gathered hay, and all babies are healthy! I'm very proud of them.
    My friend's Dutch didn't pull fur and her kits died from the cold, she was a first time mother so I was nervous about my does. Glad they're all good moms though!
    Is there anything I should be feeding them for good milk or are they okay with pellets and hay? They're also fed kale and purple lettuce as treats.
     
  8. SA Farm

    SA Farm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Congrats on the babies! What you're already feeding is great. [​IMG]
     
  9. Dutchgirl

    Dutchgirl Not Dutch!

    Apr 1, 2008
    U.S.A.

    That's great! So glad it worked out. What you're feeding them now is fine - just don't let the babies get ahold of any! The moms should definitely get all the food they can eat, plus enough treats to keep them healthy and happy. ;)

    As a side note: Some people say to feed rabbits milk (liquid or powdered) but rabbits really aren't supposed to have dairy. (Which is why I really wonder when I see the "Yogies" rabbit treats at TSC that say "made with real yogurt" on them - as if it's a good thing!) Just as an experiment I once tried giving a doe a bowl with just a little milk in it. She didn't really like it too much one way or the other anyway. But I don't recommend milk.
     
  10. Moochie

    Moochie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for the tip! The kits are munching on the pellets, is that okay?
    Also, does anyone know what is a fair rehome/sell fee for them? I was told around $40 to ensure a good home but I thought that was a bit much. I'm not really in it for the money, I just enjoy raising animals. However I don't want to see them become reptile food and I want to make sure anyone who takes them will be able to provide general care including vet care. These guys are mixed (though I really like Holland lops, later on I think I will raise those).
    Also, I said there would be pictures.. [​IMG]

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