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Why Won't My Rabbits Breed?

Understand why your rabbits behave the way they do - and what you can do about it.
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Re: Why Won't My Rabbits Breed?

Post Number:#16  Unread postby evankliewer » Fri Mar 14, 2014 5:54 pm


Okay, I've been feeding both of my rabbits parsley for the past few days and I've put apple cider vinegar (a very small amount) in their water. I haven't tried the car ride since last time, but I think I'll do that today. Also, I made a nesting box out of cardboard, put hay in it, and put it in her cage. I'll have to wait to see if she does anything, but she hasn't done anything quite yet.

Also, when I went to visit the feed store around where I live, and the guy working there said that it's possible for the rabbit to refuse to mate because she doesn't enjoy pregnancy (and therefore, the birthing process and maternal role). Is it possible for their little bunny minds to link mating with pregnancy, dislike pregnancy, and therefore refuse to mate?

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Re: Why Won't My Rabbits Breed?

Post Number:#17  Unread postby Zass » Fri Mar 14, 2014 7:38 pm


They can come to dislike the act of mating itself.
A rough buck jumping on top of them, and biting or pulling fur.
Lots of bucks seem to hump the wrong end too. :roll:
Some girls just seem really threatened the whole process.

All my does are good moms, so I can't say I've ever met one who didn't like having babies. I won't say it's impossible though, just totally outside of my realm of experience.

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Re: Why Won't My Rabbits Breed?

Post Number:#18  Unread postby RothsRabbits » Fri Mar 14, 2014 9:05 pm


give them light!! 16 plus hours the doe for sure! sounds like some bs from the store guy, i have heard everything now!!! good laugh.

acv just rusts the cages, you never hear commercial producers using any of the wives tale stuff to breed rabbits, just light the only proven thing.

i use the little solar spot lights if i have a doe that wont breed, works in 2-5 days if they aren't normally on a breeding light schedule.

some people dont feed rabbits enough also, they wont breed if they are in poor condition

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Re: Why Won't My Rabbits Breed?

Post Number:#19  Unread postby Comet007 » Sat Mar 15, 2014 1:04 am


RothsRabbits wrote:acv just rusts the cages, you never hear commercial producers using any of the wives tale stuff to breed rabbits, just light the only proven thing.


In the course of all my rabbit research, I actually came across two or three larger scale rabbit breeders who DO use OACV, as well as some other "wives tale" herbal remedies and even natural preventatives. These things have been around for a long time and many natural remedies have proven health benefits - and rabbits in the wild are able to naturally seek out various herbs that help to keep them healthy. Of course, they probably are NOT finding OACV - but it's entirely possible that they could access some naturally partially fermented apples…

I have read a few people who say it causes rust - and many who say they use the OACV with no rust. Maybe the rust is caused by using plain vinegar vs. the apple cider vinegar? They aren't the same thing at all. I'll be watching my GAW cages with interest to see if we have any rust issues.

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Re: Why Won't My Rabbits Breed?

Post Number:#20  Unread postby squidpop » Sat Mar 15, 2014 6:13 am


After reading all the posts, I also think maybe she is already been bred by the way she is acting- when mine have been bred they all start grumbling if they are put with males. Maybe give it a rest for a couple of weeks until you know for sure because you don't want her to beat up on the male and make him afraid of her.

Also, my favorite thing to do to get my females and males going is to swap their cages- let the female run around and smell his cage- and let him smell her cage and get used to her smell. I usually do the cage swap the day before and then next morning I check her vulva to see if she's ready and if she's not ready- I do the cage swap again and check her the next day.

Also, what Grumpy said.... is she fat? I think one of the biggest reasons does can't conceive is being overweight- fat grows around the ovaries and they can't get pregnant. And also if the male is fat it they say it makes them too lazy to breed.

Also, Flaxseed is a good conditioning food with lots of vitamin E and might boost condition if you think they might need extra vitamins. But its also very fattening so only give in small amounts.

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Re: Why Won't My Rabbits Breed?

Post Number:#21  Unread postby evankliewer » Sat Mar 15, 2014 2:12 pm


Just a quick update...as I already said, I put a nesting boxing yesterday, and now she's pulling out her hair, which tells me that she probably is already pregnant. I'm going to give a rest on everything and I'll update you soon if she does give birth.

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Re: Why Won't My Rabbits Breed?

Post Number:#22  Unread postby RothsRabbits » Sat Mar 15, 2014 8:29 pm


Comet007 wrote: I actually came across two or three larger scale rabbit breeders who DO use OACV

Can you provide a link to these I would like to check them out.

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Re: Why Won't My Rabbits Breed?

Post Number:#23  Unread postby evankliewer » Mon Mar 17, 2014 10:01 am


Okay, I'm pretty sure that she did give birth because I can see you small movements in her cardboard box. I can't quite see the actual kits, but I'm pretty sure that they're in there because I keep hearing movement. Now, I have another question. Will she take care of them? I never see her in the box when I come out and I've been told that she won't feed her kits unless she's alone. Can she be trusted alone? Not like I have any other choice...

-- Mon Mar 17, 2014 7:01 am --

Okay, I'm pretty sure that she did give birth because I can see you small movements in her cardboard box. I can't quite see the actual kits, but I'm pretty sure that they're in there because I keep hearing movement. Now, I have another question. Will she take care of them? I never see her in the box when I come out and I've been told that she won't feed her kits unless she's alone. Can she be trusted alone? Not like I have any other choice...

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Re: Why Won't My Rabbits Breed?

Post Number:#24  Unread postby Zass » Mon Mar 17, 2014 9:07 pm


Congratulations!
If she built a nest, pulled hair, and had the babies where she was supposed to, then everything is going good so far.

She will only nurse them once or twice a day, and will not lay with them in between, so don't worry if you never see them together. Just check for fat bellies.

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Re: Why Won't My Rabbits Breed?

Post Number:#25  Unread postby evankliewer » Wed Mar 19, 2014 2:40 am


Thank you very much! I'll make sure to check for fat bellies. I think they're okay right now, but I can't exactly tell what would be fat and healthy.
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Re: Why Won't My Rabbits Breed?

Post Number:#26  Unread postby michaels4gardens » Wed Mar 19, 2014 8:05 am


from what I can see from here-- they look just fine--
meat-mutt rabbits, a few laying hens.

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Re: Why Won't My Rabbits Breed?

Post Number:#27  Unread postby macksmom98 » Thu Feb 26, 2015 2:02 pm


My male seems uninterested (he was a few days ago now he just sits when I put her with him) and my female seems grouchy. They have been together but I am almost positive they haven't bred. I watched them twice and I never saw her lift (the 2nd time I was watching from the front) and didn't see a dramatic fall off from him. Her fur above her tail was wet so it seems the sperm may have landed there than where it was supposed to. He is new to us and could be getting used to his new cage and food, but was excited and aggressive to mate the day after we brought him home, and now a few days later shows no interest. I am going to try apple cider vinegar and switching cages, but has anyone had this problem with their buck? Congrats on your past success Evan-they look great and I hope you have had more since then:)

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Re: Why Won't My Rabbits Breed?

Post Number:#28  Unread postby akane » Thu Feb 26, 2015 4:16 pm


Usually lack of interest by a buck who previously tries to breed just means that buck is smart enough to know that doe is not ready to be bred. Already pregnant or not in breeding condition. Occasionally a doe does get bred without the usual signs. I used to use a netherland dwarf buck to test some does. If he went after them they would likely get bred by the buck I wanted and if not then it was a waste of time to try. He was very good with the does except some of the more aggressive ones but that was partially his size. Even dwarf does could be too big for him to push back because he weighed like 1lb. Sometimes I did let him breed mini rex instead of just netherlands. I had a doe that was terrified of bucks and would even scream about being with other mini rex bucks. So I put her with the ND buck and after a minute she realized the buck was not dangerous and even humped him a bit before he bred her. Bred fine with the mini rex bucks after that.

I know some people who raised rabbits in nearly 24 hour darkness and here in the northern US I've never used light and bred year round. Maybe some lines of rabbit are used to light but most of the rabbits that come from this area don't need it. They have been bred for many generations in northern light patterns.
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Re: Why Won't My Rabbits Breed?

Post Number:#29  Unread postby macksmom98 » Thu Feb 26, 2015 7:43 pm


Yes just like anything they are all different. I just need to decide of I'm operating under the assumption she is already pregnant or not. I have read about palpitation and will try that but have never done it before and understand it can be tricky.......so I do not feel like that's going to be a great indicator as well. May just need to keep checking things and see if they regain interest in each other....

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Re: Why Won't My Rabbits Breed?

Post Number:#30  Unread postby Susie570 » Fri Feb 27, 2015 7:36 am


evankliewer wrote:Thank you very much! I'll make sure to check for fat bellies. I think they're okay right now, but I can't exactly tell what would be fat and healthy.


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