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Mom just sits in the nest box?

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Mom just sits in the nest box?

Post Number:#1  Unread postby Havana » Thu Jul 05, 2018 7:49 am


Hey guys!
I had 2 does Kindle Tuesday, and they are all happy and healthy, but the one mom just sits in the box. I can't tell if she is picking them or just sitting there. The hay in the box is very flat in the front, and don't know if I should add more, or what. This is her first litter, and she has 2!
Thanks in advance! :pancake:

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Re: Mom just sits in the nest box?

Post Number:#2  Unread postby SableSteel » Thu Jul 05, 2018 11:22 am


That often means the nest box is too big. You want to get her out of there as she can start to soil the nestbox or trample kits. You can try to add more hay
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Re: Mom just sits in the nest box?

Post Number:#3  Unread postby Havana » Thu Jul 05, 2018 11:30 am


The nest box isnt too big, she barely fits in there! I'll try adding more hay, I'm wondering if it isn't that she's trying to protect them?

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Re: Mom just sits in the nest box?

Post Number:#4  Unread postby shazza » Thu Jul 05, 2018 11:48 am


in that case, i would take the box out and keep it inside in a safe place and give it to her to nurse the kits in the mornings then take it out again. some people do this for all litters, because it lessens the likelihood of predators eating kits, or mom stomping them, or other such accidents.
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Re: Mom just sits in the nest box?

Post Number:#5  Unread postby SixGun » Thu Jul 05, 2018 3:10 pm


I agree with SableSteel, I just cant imagine the kits letting her sit in there, as they would nurse, or try to, if she was nearby. Its pretty much the only thing they do for the first week and some. If she has enough space to get away from them, then the box is too big.
Shazza has a very good point. I "shelve" almost all of my litters as I just like to know they're safe during the day, and in my case, out of the heat. I give them back to the moms at dusk, and bring them back in after dawn. Now, I have loose dogs around my hutches so I dont worry too much aout night predators, but in a different set up I would also take them back in at night after they've had a chance to nurse. I do that until its too difficult to keep them in the box.

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Re: Mom just sits in the nest box?

Post Number:#6  Unread postby Nymphadora » Fri Jul 06, 2018 10:12 am


While I agree with most of the suggestions you are being given... I have a doe that will sit in her nest from time to time. Only until the kits are about 2 weeks old, usually, but she sits on them like a mother hen any time I get near. She's also one of the most fastidiously clean does I've ever had, and there's never poop or pee collected in her nestbox. Honestly, I think she hops in anytime she sees people as a way to "protect" her babies... but she'll hop out as soon as I start shifting the box around, so she's not mean or aggressive about it, and I let her do what she feels is best. :oops:

Note, my doe is not a new mother by any stretch, she has had quite a few litters under her belt (successfully), so I don't regard her behavior as damaging... I'd be worried if it was a first-timer though, as they usually do make more of a mess as they adjust to the learning-curve of motherhood.

Taking the nest box out and giving it to her only during feeding times will likely help her associate the box strictly with feeding, rather than having a little hidey-hole that just happens to also house her brood. :roll: :lol:

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