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Doe rabbit may be absorbing babies???

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Doe rabbit may be absorbing babies???

Post Number:#1  Unread postby Zena » Sun Nov 29, 2020 5:01 am


I am a hobby breeder. I have successfully brought up 2 litters of kits with my Male and one of our does. However, I have another doe that has been mated twice, is currently 28 days and I am worried that she has absorbed her babies?

I know that there is no issue with the buck as I said I have another doe who is currently raising some.
I think she absorbed her last litter and upon checking her yesterday I am worried she has done it again.

Any advice as to what might be wrong?

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Re: Doe rabbit may be absorbing babies???

Post Number:#2  Unread postby Green2Rabbits » Tue Dec 08, 2020 9:40 pm


Is she stressed out from any predators? Maybe a neighbors dog or something loud and that goes on a long time?

Did you try to feel for kits by feeling her stomach for any lumps?

Maybe some people with more experience can help more but if you didn't try feeling for kits I would start there. YouTube has a few good videos on how to do it.
Last edited by Green2Rabbits on Sat Dec 12, 2020 9:50 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Doe rabbit may be absorbing babies???

Post Number:#3  Unread postby Preitler » Fri Dec 11, 2020 1:16 pm


In my opinion, if there is nothing really wrong with the doe, absorbing a litter is very, very rare. And a result of immense stress or almost starvation. It's more of a theoretical issue, maybe happening in overcrowded warrens and dwindling food supply.
Much more likely is that she wasn't pregnant anyway.

If your doe never takes there can be something wrong with her.
Was she willing to mate? How many fall-offs did you get? This year I kept the buck with the does most of the time for 3 weeks to get the deed done, boy was a first timer though.
If I'm not sure if a doe took or she refuses to breed I keep her with the buck for some days, when she gets quite vocal with the buck around for me that is a sign she's pregnant.

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Re: Doe rabbit may be absorbing babies???

Post Number:#4  Unread postby Zena » Fri Dec 11, 2020 1:37 pm


Thanks both for your replies. I think is is in fact highly likely that she was not pregnant both times. It may have been due to her ageage, she may not have been quite ready?
She lives in a pretty street free environment, so I'm guessing if she did in fact absorb them is was not due to stress and her diet has been checked by a vet and I was told it was perfect.
I mated her again with my buck this week. I noticed that she was far more willing to mate this time and ended up having 6 or 7 successful meetings where the buck fell off.
I am also going to palate this time, I am relatively inexperienced with this so hopefully it works ok.
I am hoping it is 3rd time lucky!! :)

Thanks for your help!

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Re: Doe rabbit may be absorbing babies???

Post Number:#5  Unread postby Green2Rabbits » Sat Dec 12, 2020 9:57 am


Like Preitler said probably wasn't pregnant then. Good luck! ;)

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Re: Doe rabbit may be absorbing babies???

Post Number:#6  Unread postby Teddy2511 » Sat Dec 12, 2020 8:49 pm


Zena wrote:I am also going to palate this time, I am relatively inexperienced with this so hopefully it works ok.


Back when I first started, I was surprised to find out how simple palpating actually is. :)

A few tips that may help you have better success:

1. Practice palpating on a doe that you know is open in order to get a feel for how to do it and an idea of what "normal" feels like.

2. Palpate between days 10-14; perhaps on each one of those days until you get a feel for which day works best for you and your bunnies. I found that it was difficult for me to recognize kits on anything but day 14. And outside of this date range, people tend to have a harder time feeling the babies.

3. Don't stress about hurting the doe/kits and end up palpating too gently. You really want to reach your fingers around and feel firmly or you may struggle to recognize/locate the babies.
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