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New kits got too cold after kindling

Addressing the special needs of the breeding doe and her kits. Includes nutrition, gestation, nest boxes and materials, and tips to ensure survival of the young.
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New kits got too cold after kindling

Post Number:#1  Unread postby KHoward » Fri Feb 09, 2018 12:07 pm


Hello,

My doe kindled last night and didn't cover up the kits. It is 24 degrees here so I brought them into the house to try and save them. I was able to save 7 of 10.

The doe pulled some fur but not enough. I collected as much as I could and covered them now that they are warm again.

So, what do I do from here?

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Re: New kits got too cold after kindling

Post Number:#2  Unread postby shazza » Fri Feb 09, 2018 12:52 pm


if they are warm and she is feeding them, you don't need to do much else at this point! good job on saving so many!

if you are concerned about there not being enough fur, you can brush some off of mom (or really any other rabbit, they aren't too picky) and stuff it in the nest. you may want to get a small container and start hoarding fur from grooming sessions or if another doe pulls exorbitant amounts of fur, you can take a handful or so and put it in the container in case this situation comes up again!
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Re: New kits got too cold after kindling

Post Number:#3  Unread postby KHoward » Fri Feb 09, 2018 1:00 pm


I am worried about them staying warm from now on. Would dryer lint help, or any other material besides fur (which I will gather as I can).

Will the doe pull more fur if they need it, or is it a one time thing?

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Re: New kits got too cold after kindling

Post Number:#4  Unread postby shazza » Fri Feb 09, 2018 1:48 pm


she may pull more, she may not, some do but some don't. i would groom her (or another rabbit if you have more,) and see if you can get some fur that way.

if they are warm in the nest now, they should stay warm pretty well, though. if you're concerned about outside temps, you can bring the nest box inside and put it back every morning for mom to feed them. she only feeds them once or twice a day anyway :)

fyi, adding your location (just the state/province/growing zone if you don't want to give a specific place!) will help us give you more specific advice, since the climate in different areas really makes a difference when it comes to rabbit care!
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Re: New kits got too cold after kindling

Post Number:#5  Unread postby AmberRae » Fri Feb 09, 2018 1:56 pm


You can always pull some fur from the mom's belly area. It should come out very easily with no pain to her. I just had a doe kindle and she didn't pull any fur. It's cold out so I pulled some from the mom and put it in the nest. She didn't seem to mind at all. She is a very docile bun though.
Also I don't know about the dryer lint. I would think it would be too dusty.

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Re: New kits got too cold after kindling

Post Number:#6  Unread postby KHoward » Fri Feb 09, 2018 3:09 pm


I tried pulling the fur from her belly but it was hard to do, I barely got anything. I was pulling around her teats and surrounding areas. I will try later.

She jumped in the box and sniffed the kits for a few minutes but didn't feed them. I'll keep a close eye on the situation.

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Re: New kits got too cold after kindling

Post Number:#7  Unread postby MaggieJ » Fri Feb 09, 2018 6:31 pm


Please be aware that kits can only digest the doe's milk if they are nice and warm. Best to bring them in between feeding attempts.

Many people use dryer lint as extra bedding. If it is heavily scented you might want to avoid it.

My preference is feathers if you can't get fur. The ones from a pillow are suitable. I always used the small half-down body feathers that I saved from a mean gander years ago. They worked very well. It's a very good idea to have something in reserve for times like this.

The doe's milk may not have come in yet, but it should come in soon. Is she a first time momma? You may have to help her along if she is clueless, but if she can figure it out herself, that is better.

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Re: New kits got too cold after kindling

Post Number:#8  Unread postby Marinea » Fri Feb 09, 2018 10:29 pm


With the weather headed you way the next few days, I would probably bring in the kits. When the weather here is bad, I take them out in the morning, watch the doe nurse them,and when she is done, I bring them back in. I repeat this in the evening.
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Re: New kits got too cold after kindling

Post Number:#9  Unread postby Preitler » Sat Feb 10, 2018 12:11 pm


I use closed, solid wood nestboxes, and when it's cold I put an electric heating element under one corner, about 5-10 Watt or so, the kits are pretty good in finding their goldilocks zone when one corner is warm, another cold. I have wired the hutches anyway because I heat their water crocks in winter.

I gather spare fur from false pregnancies, but mine pluck enough anyway.
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Re: New kits got too cold after kindling

Post Number:#10  Unread postby Sagebrush » Sat Feb 10, 2018 1:30 pm


I just want to add that rabbits only nurse their babies for a very short time about 5-6 minutes versus a dog or cat that will nurse pups and kittens up to 30 minutes.

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Re: New kits got too cold after kindling

Post Number:#11  Unread postby UFCreel » Mon Feb 12, 2018 8:54 am


One thing i do when it is really cold is to get a heat lamp. Plug it in and the kits should all stay warm. The only down side is you have to keep using it. After they have grown up some. Just make sure it will not over heat them. Once they come out of the nest box they will all pile up in the light and move away if they get to warm. Good luck.

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