As much fat as possible

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eco2pia

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My knee jerk reaction is "they don't". I know they do, a little, sometimes, once they are full adults, but fryers generally are pretty lean.

If you really want fat rabbits you need to feed a lot of high energy foods, like sunflower seeds, root vegetables, and grains, but those are not really good for them in massive quantities, so you would still need to offer hay/forage. I think if I wanted growouts to get fat I would give them free choice of whatever high fat and protein foods that I could get my hands on, I would keep them in smaller enclosures so that they can't run it off, and then I would offer only as much hay as it took to keep them from bloating...and I have just described a factory farm veal operation, which is the opposite of what I want to do.

Really, if you want fat, raise a duck.
 

Cosima

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How about potatoes could I feed them that instead of carrots and sweet potatoes so I can feed them more with out having to worry about them having a sugar overload.
 

eco2pia

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I do think MaggieJ linked an old paper talking about feeding potatoes. It does seem like a good option to help rabbits grow, but I think they probably do best on a variety of foods, like us.

Really though, at best the rabbit is going to have fat on the outside of the meat--so all you want to do is learn to cook them properly for your own tastes, the meat will be more tender if you use younger rabbits, rest the meat after they are killed and cleaned for 24h before cooking, use seasonings you like, and maybe cook them in a sauce, gravy, extra onions with oil, or fry the meat in batter or breading. Basically, the meat will be great but you will want extra fat and seasoning in the other parts of cooking them, and then the "lean" effect will be not so noticeable. If you have ducks, you can save fat from cooking the duck to cook the rabbit in...

You live in indonesia, but you seem to speak mostly english, so do you cook indonesian style at home, or western style? Rabbit would be great in curries, fried rice, etc. Learning to cook rabbit in different styles might make it better for you, plus cooking is fun, and the whole internet is available to help you figure out what you would like.
 

Olbunny

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Hello all. I open feed our friers. Pellets, hay, clean water, forge for natural foods. Dandelions to birch tree limbs. Our rabbits don't eat potatoes. But we give them lots of table trims and garden leftovers. I keep a small mineral lick hanging in there pens. I put larger diameter sticks approximately 1" x 3" long in with them as a chew toy of sort. Gives them something to play with to reduce boredom.
I use a pen. For me it is easier. And they stay nice n clean.
We are averaging a 5 pound live, 2-1/2 pound dressed frier in 12 weeks.
 

Cosima

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You live in indonesia, but you seem to speak mostly english, so do you cook indonesian style at home, or western style? Rabbit would be great in curries, fried rice, etc. Learning to cook rabbit in different styles might make it better for you, plus cooking is fun, and the whole internet is available to help you figure out what you would like.
My parents are german I am not actually Indonesian. And I don’t actually cook I eat raw so raw meat, raw fish, raw fruits and raw vegetables.
 

MaggieJ

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How about potatoes could I feed them that instead of carrots and sweet potatoes so I can feed them more with out having to worry about them having a sugar overload.
Yikes! Don't go feeding potatoes to rabbits without knowing what you are doing!

That article was a study from the WW2 era -- before pellets -- and at a time when grain was rationed. It was experimental and the potatoes were to replace the grain element in their usual diet. The weeds fed were the natural diet of the wild European rabbit from which our domestic rabbits are descended.

Potatoes must be cooked for rabbits. Do not feed the eyes or any green-skinned parts -- they are toxic. I sometimes fed my rabbits leftover baked potato in winter and they liked it, but I would be cautious about it on a regular basis until you have read and understood the article I posted.

Everything was rationed during that era in Britain. If you went to the butcher, you could only buy small amounts of meat for your family. Raising rabbits was a way to get enough protein. But you couldn't feed them grain -- it was rationed too and only for human consumption. People were seeking alternatives and potatoes, combined with weeds seemed a promising choice. That's why studies like this one were done.

In my opinion, the study was faulty. They used only a few species of weeds when there were dozens of species that could have been fed. Proceed with caution and make any changes in your rabbits' diet slowly.

For convenience, I am posting the link again here, but please understand that it was an answer to a desperate need and not "best practices."

 

MaggieJ

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Okay I will not feed my rabbits potato. thanks for the response.
Cosima, perhaps I came on too strong in my last post. It's not that potatoes can't be fed as a part of your rabbits' diet. It's just that you need to be a lot more careful with them than many other kinds of food. Just read up on it and proceed slowly. Make sure to break off any eyes, cut off any green parts, and cook them before feeding.
 

Olbunny

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I believe that potatoes are on the list of foods that can not be fed to rabbits. Unless caution is applied as stated.
There are quite a few copies of the can or can't eat list around on the net.
I've been trying to bag dry leaves for a foraged food for over winter.
 

Cosima

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Cosima, perhaps I came on too strong in my last post. It's not that potatoes can't be fed as a part of your rabbits' diet. It's just that you need to be a lot more careful with them than many other kinds of food. Just read up on it and proceed slowly. Make sure to break off any eyes, cut off any green parts, and cook them before feeding.
If I have to cook the potatoes then I don’t what to give my rabbits them because one of the reason me and my family raise rabbits and chicken ourselves is so they don’t eat cooked food so that would be counterproductive.
 

MaggieJ

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If I have to cook the potatoes then I don’t what to give my rabbits them because one of the reason me and my family raise rabbits and chicken ourselves is so they don’t eat cooked food so that would be counterproductive.
Just curious ... What is the objection to cooked food?
 

Cosima

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That is going to be hard to explain…

well wild animal don’t cook so why is it good for us. If a tiger was fed cooked food then that tiger probably will only survive for a year or something like that now probably the reason we don’t die young (some people do) is because we are adapted to it but in my opinion it is not the ideal food. plus, chocolate is bad for your heath (why would people eat something that is bitter?), right? Well in raw food I would smell food and if something smells good then it is what I need and once I have enough then i will have a stop. As a example if you were eating pineapple first if you needed it then it will be sweet but when you have enough it will burn while for cooked food that doesn’t happen if you are eating cheese you can eat and eat with no stop at all. And I have been eating raw ever since I was a baby and I am growing fine so even if it is not better then cooked food it is not worse.

I am not trying to say that raw food is the best and people should only eat it, I am saying that I believe that it is better than cooked food and other people are aloud to have another opinion.
 

Zee-Man

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I understand the desire to eat raw. When the raw food can be had fresh, that is certainly reasonable. Yet with the possibility of parasites, that could be dangerous. Trichinella worms are the main reason we cook pig. I don't recall parasites for beef. Most wild game is at risk for for the many vermicultures, pin, tape, heart, etc. Most worms will exist in the meat then travel to the gut for the bulk of their life cycle. Chicken is cooked because of the high risk of salmonella. Although, free range can be less susceptible to it, even those birds are likely exposed.

Aside from parasites and micrrobes, cooking also makes some nutrients more available. Even though heat destroys some nutrients, they may be locked away when raw. Some compounds, like sapponins, get commuted or destroyed by cooking, thus the food becomes more palatable, ie dandelion.
 

Cosima

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I understand the desire to eat raw. When the raw food can be had fresh, that is certainly reasonable. Yet with the possibility of parasites, that could be dangerous. Trichinella worms are the main reason we cook pig. I don't recall parasites for beef. Most wild game is at risk for for the many vermicultures, pin, tape, heart, etc. Most worms will exist in the meat then travel to the gut for the bulk of their life cycle. Chicken is cooked because of the high risk of salmonella. Although, free range can be less susceptible to it, even those birds are likely exposed.
Thanks for understanding. my family is careful we don’t eat pork that isn’t checked and we don’t eat chicken unless we raise and kill it our selves.
 

eco2pia

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My parents are german I am not actually Indonesian. And I don’t actually cook I eat raw so raw meat, raw fish, raw fruits and raw vegetables.
I figured, from various things you have said that you were not indonesian, but I could not have predicted your family's particular path in a million billion years! You are living a very very unique life, and I think that is pretty fascinating. If your family is not blogging away already, or even if it is, one of you should write a book about how this all arose and what it is like to grow up like this.

Hmm. Raw meat is probably better marinated when it is lean. I think I would go for incorporating a lot of stronger/richer flavors, like salt/soy/fish sauce, oil, nuts, and maybe vinegars and spice.... But then I think maybe that is just what tastes best to me because I grew up on the caramelized flavor of cooked meat. My only real experience with raw meat/fish is sushi, ceviche, and steak tartare. In each case salt and spice were key. Your thoughts about the fat now make a lot more sense.
 

Cosima

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I figured, from various things you have said that you were not indonesian, but I could not have predicted your family's particular path in a million billion years! You are living a very very unique life, and I think that is pretty fascinating. If your family is not blogging away already, or even if it is, one of you should write a book about how this all arose and what it is like to grow up like this.
we are planning to start a youtube channel. I might even start a separate channel to share things about rabbits chicken and cats. I agree we should probably write a book but unfortunately we are currently we are to busy.
 

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