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Should I....

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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Should I....

Post Number:#1  Unread postby Maleficent » Sun Oct 22, 2017 6:15 pm


Change my Netherland doe out of the dog kennel she is in where the only entrance in a single opening on the front to an actual cage? I'm only asking because is near impossible to get to her in her current set up. I practically have to climb in after her to reach her and would like to be able to access the babies easier as well. Or would changing her up only stress her out?

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Re: Should I....

Post Number:#2  Unread postby MaggieJ » Sun Oct 22, 2017 6:28 pm


When is she due? Is she a first-timer? Does she have a relaxed temperament or is she high-strung? These all would be considerations for me under the circumstances. But I do agree she would be better off in a cage where you can get at her and the kits.

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Re: Should I....

Post Number:#3  Unread postby Maleficent » Sun Oct 22, 2017 6:34 pm


She is an older experienced silver marten ND, this is her first litter with me. She is due this Friday so about 3wks along. She is friendly but a tiny bit skittish.

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Re: Should I....

Post Number:#4  Unread postby MaggieJ » Sun Oct 22, 2017 7:28 pm


In your place, I'd get her new cage all ready, right down to food and water, and then drape something (something she can't chew on) over part of the cage so she doesn't feel totally exposed after being in a closed environment. Then I'd move her and give her a special treat in the new cage. Then I'd leave her alone and keep things around her quiet for a number of hours at least. She'll have a week to adjust and should be fine, though there are never any guarantees.

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Re: Should I....

Post Number:#5  Unread postby LittleFluffyBunnies » Mon Oct 23, 2017 4:34 am


I agree with MaggieJ. I often move my preggo moms around so I can have them in my best cages. I move them at 3 weeks along, making sure they have as close to the original setup as possible in their new cage, and I've never had issues.
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Re: Should I....

Post Number:#6  Unread postby faiththequeen » Mon Oct 23, 2017 9:30 am


MaggieJ wrote:In your place, I'd get her new cage all ready, right down to food and water, and then drape something (something she can't chew on) over part of the cage so she doesn't feel totally exposed after being in a closed environment. Then I'd move her and give her a special treat in the new cage. Then I'd leave her alone and keep things around her quiet for a number of hours at least. She'll have a week to adjust and should be fine, though there are never any guarantees.


I agree. I think itll be better over all to put her in an easier access cage.
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Re: Should I....

Post Number:#7  Unread postby Ozarkansas » Mon Oct 23, 2017 9:40 am


Half the time I move my does in to a larger cage before they give birth. I always move them with at least 4 days until there due date, after that I wait until the babies are at least 10 days old to move them. Somehow I feel my does get more anxious about a new cage after the babies are born than right before birth. One time I had a doe I didn't know was pregnant, and I found her nesting on the floor of a cage I didn't want her to have babies in, I moved her and gave her a box in the new cage. 5 hours later I had 4 babies in a very nice nest. I would say definitely move her, and do it before the babies are born. :D :bunnyhop:
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Re: Should I....

Post Number:#8  Unread postby Maleficent » Mon Oct 23, 2017 4:52 pm


I got her moved, if anything she seemed more interested in her new cage vs stressed out. I grabbed a small handful of her old bedding and threw it in to give her a familiar scent then gave her a big handful of apple leaves, grasses, and dandelions mixed as I ran out of pellets until my feed I ordered comes back in stock and ships. I even threw in a nest box in to keep her entertained.

-- Mon Oct 23, 2017 3:52 pm --

Did a quick health assessment on her after she settled in to her cage. Wanted to make sure I had her nails trimmed and she has no interest in the nest box. Not to concerned as the cage is one of those solid plastic bottom ones so if she desires to nest in her fresh clean bedding she can. While doing her health assessment I felt flutter kicks from babies! Question, its not to unusual for rabbits (Netherland at least) to birth on day 28 right?

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Re: Should I....

Post Number:#9  Unread postby akane » Mon Oct 23, 2017 7:44 pm


Mine never went early and plenty of dwarf still go longer than typical but it's a little more common for small rabbits to go earlier and larger rabbits to go later than the general population average.

If she's experienced and not nesting yet I wouldn't expect an issue moving her. She may be less likely to use a nest box in a solid bottom cage with bedding because it's unnecessary and it's a bit unnatural to go up into a nest when they would burrow in the wild. Ones that have used a nestbox often recognize it and will still use it more often no matter what conditions you put it in but I found it very common in solid bottom, bedded cages for does to just pick a corner or cram them next to the box so they could dig down to the bottom for their nesting hole. Inexperienced does almost never chose a typical nest box without an open wire floor being the only other option. It does present a problem with the kits wandering easier even in a solid cage where they don't chill as easy on the wire. In colonies where I had more space side opening items worked best. Long wood boxes with hinged lids and removable about 4" high material in the door opening so kits were stopped but it could easily be scraped out worked well. I also had some covered cat boxes and while the jump was higher they still were side opening so they were similar enough for several. The only actual half top open typical nest box used was an experienced doe and a giant flemish box she would just pack and bury with 3' deep of bedding and straw so it helped form a cave in the mound. Technically she used the box....
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Re: Should I....

Post Number:#10  Unread postby Maleficent » Fri Oct 27, 2017 8:25 am


Yeah went out to check on her real quick just to see how she was settling in and she was hard core nesting. I gave her handfuls of hay to nest with and she just kept stuffing her mouthful. Either I can expect popples in the morning or I can hopefully expect them on Fri

-- Fri Oct 27, 2017 7:25 am --

Babies were born this morning! I'm thinking one may be a fail to thrive though. It doesn't have a milk belly like the rest and shows no interest in nursing when shown mom's nipple. :cry:

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Re: Should I....

Post Number:#11  Unread postby MaggieJ » Fri Oct 27, 2017 6:27 pm


:congratulations:

Glad most of the popples are doing well. Even if you lose the weak one (as sometimes happens despite everything one tries to help), I think you made the right decision moving her.

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Re: Should I....

Post Number:#12  Unread postby Maleficent » Fri Oct 27, 2017 9:40 pm


Well I have good news! All were enthusiastically nursing tonight and had fat bellies! The smallest might also be either a blue otter or a blue marten! :o

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Re: Should I....

Post Number:#13  Unread postby KimitsuKouseki » Fri Oct 27, 2017 10:51 pm


gratz ^^

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Re: Should I....

Post Number:#14  Unread postby Ozarkansas » Fri Oct 27, 2017 10:59 pm


Congrats on your popples!!! :lilbunny: :lilbunny: The smaller one does look a little lighter but definitely not blue. I get a lot of blue kits, and you can tell they are blue! Pics for reference:
2017-10-27 22.51.32.jpg
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2017-10-27 22.51.32.jpg (282.45 KiB) Viewed 46 times
2017-10-27 22.51.07.jpg
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2017-10-27 22.50.52.jpg
Blue Americans (lighter ones)
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Re: Should I....

Post Number:#15  Unread postby Maleficent » Sat Oct 28, 2017 3:42 am


Thank you guys! I honestly don't think that the camera did the little guy justice. I think it dulled them a bit and made them look more like their siblings. In person they definitely look more blue-grey. If they aren't blue what could they be then? :hmm:

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