Xerocles rabbit thread

promiseacres

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Cruella may need bred...some mellow when bred, but keep your hand high and watch her. Some are very territorial. They seem to born that way and not much you can do to change them. I have a couple...they respect and get thumped if they jump at me...they all are sweet as can be when bred. I don't tolerate nasty bucks...they tend to be less predictable. And since my kids help feed and show the rabbits... not going to tolerate much. One territorial doe is a homebred mini rex who got a BOB for my daughter out of about 35 rabbits. She and I have worked out things for the most part, kids know not to mess with her too much. She's a sweetie when bred... :hu
 

Xerocles

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The rabbits have officially been here for more than a week. So, its time to start working them into the family a little. They're still standoffish. No touching. But the red actually approaches when I open the door, and Cruella seldom charges anymore. The buck? He's just kinda there. No touchy, but otherwise just a laid back rabbit. I start with him. Gotta get mineral oil in those ears. I know he's gotta be miserable, from the head shaking and scratching. Hey, question. How many days do I treat, and is it necessary to dive in with q-tips? This early on, and with them not accustomed to handling, I want to keep it as non-obtrusive as possible while still doing what I need to do. They're all loving the pear tree chew sticks I give them. I'm guessing they haven't had much to keep those teeth worn down with.
But, I said I was gonna talk poop today. One week, and I challenge anyone to find more than 6 bunny berries under my cages. Oh, the rabbits are doing their part. But, as I said, they're there for poop, meat is a byproduct. I'm starting from less than scratch on my garden, and wish I had a literal ton of rabbit manure.
NYX. (The dog, for those who don't know) VERY quickly caught on that the rabbits belong and are not to be bothered. She has adopted them as "her" pets. Spends a huge amount of time on the uphill side (which puts her nearly on eye level) just watching them. She learned they were "good" really quickly, but I'm kinda paranoid so I spend a lot of time watching her watching them. She's a dog, and in spite of what I think she knows, better safe than sorry. So, I noticed from time to time, she would go under the hutch and stand there staring up. I wouldn't correct until she overtly misbehaved (made a move on the rabbits). She never did, but I observed occasional quick head bobs from her. Working closer so I could see better, I finally figured it out. She was catching poo in mid drop! She keeps the ground vacuumed of poop.
Some of you have ridden me pretty hard about fencing or enclosing the shed to prevent predation. Well, you win, but in this case to prevent predation ON THE POOP by my own dog. Oh, lest you think "poor dog she must be starving". She's on free food. I dump it in the bin, and she uses her nose to open a flap and feed at will. She just likes the taste of rabbit pills. Has cut down on the dog food consumption, but I'd rather have the fertilizer!
And tomorrow's another day. Bring it on!
 

Xerocles

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Cruela is improving. Don't get me wrong. I'm not ready to change her name to "cuddles" or anything. But maybe I'll have to forgo hassenpfeffer for Christmas. 10 days in. She has stopped charging the cage whenever I approach. She even hops (HOPS, not charges) to the front of the cage when I walk up. I even reached my ungloved hand in to the midpoint of her cage to retrieve her water dish (still can't figure why she won't use the bottle) without a growl or attack. And I'm sure it's my charm, and not the fresh violets, pear limbs, hay or bananas I've been bribing her with (in very small amounts since her system isn't used to it).
We'll see. I know one day I'll have to have the confrontation to decide just who is the head rabbit, but since she's doing so well, I think I'll put it off a bit longer.
Other two are doing fine. Still no touchy feely, but the NZ is sniffing my hand routinely....until I extend a finger to touch her.
 

Duckfarmerpa1

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Good stuff! I knew I kept you around for some reason!
And maybe I'll slide a piece of pvc over the cord from the cage top to the light fixture "just in case".
Thanks... For thinking FOR me.
Don’t you think if he’s going to do that he’d be better
I started breeding rabbits in September through April. Summer time was no-breed time. Heat kills. Fat, pregnant, wearing a fur coat, 90+ to 100 degrees guarantees a heat stroke dead doe.

No flack, you did good. You did your homework and yes, breeding her at 6 months was the right thing to do. I know you don't have electricity to your rabbit barn. Can you run an outdoor extension cord to it? Go up a post, over, then drop down over the nest box. Use a 60 or 100 watt regular light bulb and place the aluminum shield over the nest box on freezing cold nights. Just keep the cord UP off the cage or you'll get fried rabbit sooner than you wanted, but you already know that.


Bayco Sl-300 8.5 Inch Clamp Light with Aluminum Reflector, Size: 8.5 inch, Silver
if he’s going to do that....don’t you think he’d be better, putting it a tad further away from the nest but using an actual heat lamp bulb? The red one? I have a very very sick duck. He’s been in the house barn for three weeks...for the first two I thought I had the heat lamp on him and I kept asking Chris to make sure it wasn’t too close to his hay, the blanket, etc...he kept saying it was fine. Then the other day he comes in and called me a moron because that was our grower bulb for plants...not heat...but I said you were supposed to check it..so he’s the moron! :lol: but..anyways...those give off more heat, but you have to just back it up..since it’s not an inside coop, etc..there’s not much risk for fire. Just a thought...I’ve never needed to use anything besides the mother’s warm fur
 

Duckfarmerpa1

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Good job on the love birds!

I'm of two minds on the heat lamp issue... use them with my goats kid and it is cold but have not used a heat lamp with the rabbits. Usually the moms pull enough fur to make a very cozy warm nest and I try to have extra fur stashed away for the few times I though she needed more fur in the nest.

I save fur from the summer time when I brush the rabbits... put the brushed out fur in a ziplock type bag. When the rabbits molt I grab fur by the handful and add it to the bag. Occasionally a doe will pull tons of fur and I grab some of the extra and pop it in the bag. Comes in handy.

Regarding free feeding... the only time I free feed (keeping feed, which I define as rabbit pellets in the food dish 24/7) is 3 or 4 days after the doe kindles. This gives her the time for her milk to come in before you ramp up the groceries. Otherwise my Calis get fed in the late afternoon and get about 1/2 each... unless the night is going to be in the 20-30's then I give them another 1/4 cup.

Now about Cruella... poor thing, find her a better name, something cheerful and nice like Jessica. You want her to be a good bunny, a nice bunny, a pleasure to have around and that may be difficult with her current name. Just saying. She apparently has had no contact with nice people, does not know about the nice things in life and has a bad attitude. She is in self-defense mode. Start with just talking to her kindly, work up to finding something she reallllllly likes to eat and treating her with a little piece in the morning. For example, if you find out she likes apple then save her a little piece in the morning just for her. I have some rabbits that go crazy for grapefruit peel, some are junkies for bananas or melon rind. She needs to feel safe. You can do this... you already care about her welfare. 1,000 Bravos for getting her out of that environment. Given time she will be a calmer bunny. She may retain a degree of alertness but she is a bunny and prey and prey is always alert.

I have some rabbits that love being touched at any time, some like it on their own terms but I have never had a rabbit that did not get to the point of greeting me at the front of the cage any time I was near... in expectation of something nice.

I think you are doing just fine.
ive. never had to fiddle around with the hat much in the nesting boxes. I try to treat it a sacred for the kits. I feel through...if it’s damp..I clean it..I smell it, I clean..but if it’s ok...I leave it be. You need a lot of hay, though. That’s how she makes her nest and keeps them safe..then they dig all through it. I agree with herd master...if you give care and a new name to Cruella..she will be a new rabbit. Many of my animals are rescues that had no contact with humans. Now..they have a great life!!
Hmmmm. Food for thought. Cardboard will absorb the moisture pretty fast, and also dry pretty fast. But amonia fumes are still amonia fumes. But the same could be said of the hay. Did you change hay much when they were tiny?
The cardboard is only for winter. Remember I have an open shed. (BTW. will have the tarps installed by mid-week. Just had to wait for justification for a trip to Harbor Freight. Going Monday.) Help to protect from chilling wind. Summertime, no cardboard. Maximum air circulation.
You've given me something to ponder. Easy enough to omit the floor cardboard.
 

Duckfarmerpa1

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Cruela is improving. Don't get me wrong. I'm not ready to change her name to "cuddles" or anything. But maybe I'll have to forgo hassenpfeffer for Christmas. 10 days in. She has stopped charging the cage whenever I approach. She even hops (HOPS, not charges) to the front of the cage when I walk up. I even reached my ungloved hand in to the midpoint of her cage to retrieve her water dish (still can't figure why she won't use the bottle) without a growl or attack. And I'm sure it's my charm, and not the fresh violets, pear limbs, hay or bananas I've been bribing her with (in very small amounts since her system isn't used to it).
We'll see. I know one day I'll have to have the confrontation to decide just who is the head rabbit, but since she's doing so well, I think I'll put it off a bit longer.
Other two are doing fine. Still no touchy feely, but the NZ is sniffing my hand routinely....until I extend a finger to touch her.
Do you pick them up and hold them? That puts you as the one in charge
 

Baymule

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The lamp may not be needed, but if there is a sudden cold snap, better safe than sorry. His rabbitry is open with no solid sides. He is in the south, so can go from 80* to freezing in a day/night. Like we just did, it was 82* on Sunday, 28* Monday morning. LOL He is a good Bunny Grand Daddy and wants his kits to be warm and cozy.

I never used a heat lamp, just a 60 or 100 watt light bulb. When I had rabbits, I lived in Baytown, right on Trinity Bay, which emptied into the Gulf of Mexico. While warm and balmy most of the time, temps would drop and I kept those aluminum drop lights on top of the cage, over the nest box.
 

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