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Netherland Dwarf Breeding

Discussion of specific breeds, breed standards and selection criteria for purebreds.
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Netherland Dwarf Breeding

Post Number:#1  Unread postby ms2rt » Sun Sep 04, 2016 2:02 pm


I have a ND buck, just shy of a year old that we are trying to breed to a couple does we have. The first time we tried, he mounted the doe twice, put her back in 12 hours later, he mounted her twice again. Put her back in 14 days later and she aggressively resisted him so we took that as confirmation she was pregnant. 30 days after initial breeding....nothing. Evidently was not pregnant. We tried to breed them again and now the buck doesn't act interested. Tried a different doe, same thing...not interested. Looked at his testicles and whereas they were pretty large at first, now it seems they've shrunk. Should I try a different buck?

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Re: Netherland Dwarf Breeding

Post Number:#2  Unread postby SixGun » Sun Sep 04, 2016 2:34 pm


In my experience anything less than full healthy testicles can indicate a problem, and an infertile (for any multitude of reasons) buck.

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Have you had any recent high temperatures? Is he off his feed or acting differently in any other way? When you say shrunk do they still look full in the skin (but smaller), or are they wrinkled?

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Re: Netherland Dwarf Breeding

Post Number:#3  Unread postby ms2rt » Sun Sep 04, 2016 3:19 pm


That's how they looked when we first tried breeding. Now it almost looks like they never dropped at all. We did have all the rabbits in our air conditioned basement, but I thought the lack of daylight might be the problem so I moved them all out the garage. Weather just broke to cooler temps.

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Re: Netherland Dwarf Breeding

Post Number:#4  Unread postby SixGun » Sun Sep 04, 2016 3:33 pm


It's possible the movement may have upset him, and I couldn't predict if or when he will return to fertile status.

If you have another buck to use, I'd do so. In my experience any buck that had issues, had reoccurring issues, and was an expense I wasn't willing to work with.

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Re: Netherland Dwarf Breeding

Post Number:#5  Unread postby ms2rt » Sun Sep 04, 2016 8:27 pm


He wasn't interested before I moved him, that's why I moved him.

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Re: Netherland Dwarf Breeding

Post Number:#6  Unread postby SixGun » Tue Sep 06, 2016 1:29 pm


Well, darn it.
Try a good quality food, maybe some probiotics and vitamins, a cooling pad to lie on, and give him thirty days.

I'm not familiar with this particular brand, but these vitamins are always a good idea through times of stress.
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Re: Netherland Dwarf Breeding

Post Number:#7  Unread postby FourRingCircus » Tue Sep 06, 2016 1:58 pm


The testicles can change appearance - and I know in stressful situations they can even be pulled in closer to the body (my instinct says for protection)... a very good design implement for a male mammal ;) :lol:

Heat is also a big factor depending on where you live, and it doesn't take long for it to zap those little swimmers and a while to get them going again (if you could put your location in your profile on the left... doesn't have to be specific, but it helps the community answer/troubleshoot a bit more accurately).

Did he have a good fall off, or just mount and lose interest? Being young and inexperienced it might just take him time to figure out the mechanics of it all. If you have wire cages you can look underneath and get a better idea if the doe is lifting or has her butt planted, if he is hitting the mark or just flailing away, etc.

When you say 30 days after initial breeding, is that now? If so there is still plenty of time for her to have kits. It's not always easy to tell if they are PG. Keep a nest box in for at least another week. If she is a first time mom she might not get it figured out exactly right.

Also, how aggressive was she toward him? He might be a bit afraid to approach now (which would explain the suck in testicles). Or he could be over weight and lazy ;) What time of day are you trying? They are most active at night and in the AM, by afternoon it's siesta time!

Lots to think about - just trying to think through all the scenarios based on the info provided.
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Re: Netherland Dwarf Breeding

Post Number:#8  Unread postby SixGun » Tue Sep 06, 2016 2:49 pm


Heritage,
You are so right! I had forgotten the doe's reaction and that he was new to the idea. ms2rt, I would also suggest placing them in adjacent cages, and introducing her to him a few more times. Exposure to a doe may also pique his interest and get the hormones flowing. You said you had a few does, what is the behavior with the other one?

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Re: Netherland Dwarf Breeding

Post Number:#9  Unread postby ms2rt » Tue Sep 06, 2016 9:11 pm


His behavior is the same with all does I put in his cage. I have one doe next to him and one doe below him at the moment. I've increased the lighting in the garage to mimic daylight hours. First mating he had a good fall off, squealed and dropped to the side. I feed Manna Pro to my show rabbits. I'll give him another month and see what happens.

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Re: Netherland Dwarf Breeding

Post Number:#10  Unread postby akane » Tue Sep 06, 2016 11:45 pm


The average due date of a rabbit is up to day 31 but you should wait until at least day 35 to be certain of no pregnancy and many leave a box in until day 40 because kits have come that late. Their odds of a live, healthy litter start to go down when they hold out that late though. Even if they agree to breed later you should act as if they bred on the original date until enough time has passed you are sure they didn't take that breeding and then go to the next date you attempted. Does may choose to breed or not breed separate from their state of pregnancy. Not breeding or allowing it is not proof of anything

Rabbits retain the ability to pull testicles back up in to the body. The ring of muscle does not close like it does in many other animals. This is one reason neutering them is more complex instead of just removing the testes from the sack around them like you can do with other livestock. It should not impact fertility except they are quite sensitive to heat and may take a month or so to recover fertility after being exposed to hot temps. Also, if they don't breed for awhile they can have trouble getting does pregnant or for does getting them in the mood to breed again. Always expect more problems if your rabbits have not been used for breeding consistently. It may just take repeated attempts to get things going again. Especially when heat sterility is a factor.
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