Can I move my doe and her kits? Double pregnancy

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Mini Lop Mama

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Hello, I recently had a surprise litter of Mini Lops. The doe is an INCREDIBLE mama, but she isn't in the cage I want her in when the babies start hoping about or start moving out of the nest even the littlest bit. When is it safe to move her? She's been an awesome mum and has 7 kits. The kits are 4 days old.

Also she was bred successfully by a proven buck and will be due the 21st. Is it possible she could have a double pregnancy? Are those very common?
TIA
 

Preitler

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No double pregnancy if she was pregnant at the time, I don't think that's anything other than either freak accidents or misinterpretation of inconsistent kit development, which can happen, also that does give birth days apart.

I did move nests on several occasions, When I do it I keep the doe in that hutch for 1-2 days, then during feeding time for some more (they normally get to roam the garden during daytime and live in complexes of connected hutches with at least another doe), block off the region where the nest was previously and show her the nest 2-3 times by shoving her nose into the nest, then give her lots of privacy and as little distraction as possible.
 

Robochelle

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Rabbit does have 2 uteruses... uteri? Uterus(plural). If successfully bred, don't breed again any later than 1 week, or earlier than 2 weeks. Double pregnancy is possible but definitely not desirable; second litter is born at the same time as the first, and usually dies because they are underdeveloped. The doe is under more stress as well.

As long as the doe is an experienced or naturally skilled mother, she's comfortable with you, familiar with the cage, and the cage doesn't smell like other rabbits, she should have no problem with the nest being moved.

I've had to move a nest the day of kindle, from the floor to a box, in a new cage, from the barn to the house, with a first time mom. I wouldn't recommend that, it was an emergency (who gives birth a week late, in freezing conditions, on a wire floor? Beanie, that's who!) But all the kits survived, and she was happy to see them safe
 
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ladysown

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I have opened up lots of rabbits. I have NEVER seen a double uterus in a rabbit. They have two horns for sure, but not a double uterus.

The whole "rabbits can have two pregnancies at the same time" has some believers, and lots of skeptics. BUT honestly, I do not know what to believe.
 

MsTemeraire

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Rabbit does have 2 uteruses... uteri? Uterus(plural).
They have two cervices(cervixes). All animals that have multiple young have two horns, in order for there to be enough surface area for the whole litter to successfully attach to the uterine wall. The difference is that rabbits have separate cervixes for each horn.

The 'double pregnancy' thing is so rare that I'd put it down to an anomaly, possibly a hormone issue. If it were more common, it would be seen a lot in those cases where "We thought they were both female".

Rabbits are induced ovulators, so they only ovulate as a response to having been mated. Once released, eggs don't survive more than a few days. So to carry two separate litters of different ages, several things would have to occur in conjunction - The doe has to ovulate again; there has to be viable sperm waiting to fertilise the eggs; and one of the horns has to be free an empty to receive the ovulated eggs.

If the postulated 'second litter' joined those already growing in the uterine horns, they would be pushed out by the contractions and born at the same time as the older litter, and it would be obvious they were more than a week premature. Therefore one of the horns must be empty and ready for them, but it would be unusual for the first litter to be occupying only one horn - they are usually spread across both.
 

hotzcatz

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If the reason you want the doe in a different cage is for when the little ones come out of the nest, you've got about ten days or so before that would happen, wouldn't it? Would it be good to wait a bit so she can settle into being a mum bun? Maybe if all the nesting materials were shifted along with the babies, then it would all smell right to her when they moved?

The buns here wouldn't mind, but they get shifted around a lot and are used to all the different hutches. If your doe has only been in one space and isn't used to a variety of places, she may not be overly enthused about moving.
 

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