Culling aggressive doe

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KelleyBee

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Question follows back story: So, in addition to my blue silver fox doe not wanting to lift when presented to a buck, this same doe now after having her first litter, has become aggressive and has drawn blood from me several times. Although I corrected her aggression as my rabbit books described to assert my dominance, I accepted her aggression while her litter was with her as somewhat understandable. But they’ve now been separated from her for a better part of the week and her aggression has not abated. She will bite my fingers if I allow them through her cage bars….in the normal course of caring for her, if I put my hand inside to give treats, if my fingers slip through while changing out her water bottle she’s forever attacking and lunging at me. I have responded with the rabbit language the books tell us to assert my dominance, but it doesn’t seem to matter to her. I just bred her again earlier this week. She’s almost 10 months old. I got her when she was 7 months old and she has never warmed up to me the way my other rabbits have whom I got at 8 weeks. Thus, after her attacks today, my decision is final. I am going to cull her once she’s weaned the litter she currently carrying. She’ll be about 12 to 13 months by then. Since she’s going to be much Oder than fryer age, what is she best used for? Roaster? Dog food?
thank you!
 

Ducklove74

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I used my last doe who was almost 3 years for rabbit noodle soup...cooked her in crockpot with a little chicken bouillon just like homemade chicken noodle soup..I've also done like this with dumplings as well. Slow cooked or in a stew will be your best bet...and if after cooking if you find it isn't to your liking the dogs will still eat it 😅
 

MaggieJ

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An older rabbit is perfect for rabbit pie. It's a bit of work, but worth it!

 

KelleyBee

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An older rabbit is perfect for rabbit pie. It's a bit of work, but worth it!

Thank you. I have copied and printed out the recipe. Did I make a mistake? I’m wondering how i managed to make this thread in the wrong forum.
 

MaggieJ

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KelleyBee, I don't know how it happened, but your original post was in General Rabbit Discussions. Some pet rabbit people don't want to read about using rabbits for meat. (I'd feel the same about cats, though I know in some places they are eaten.) So as a matter of consideration and politeness we keep all the meat rabbit talk in the Meat Rabbit forum and in Rabbit Recipes. This allows people to avoid these topics if that is their preference. This is why I moved the thread and sent you the reminder. But it's not a problem just this once, so don't worry.
 

RabbitsOfTheCreek

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I don't want to interrupt and I know that there's meat rabbits but I always think it's weird when people make food with their rabbits they grew up
 

MaggieJ

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I don't want to interrupt and I know that there's meat rabbits but I always think it's weird when people make food with their rabbits they grew up
Some rabbits are pets and some are livestock. It's important to make that distinction. Eating rabbit is no different from eating chicken or any other meat if it comes from rabbits raised for that purpose. Most people raising meat rabbits give them a good life and a humane death. They take pleasure in their rabbits, but they are definitely livestock. Sometimes a favourite breeder will attain "pet status" and be kept on even when it is beyond practical breeding.

Your feelings on this and many other members' feelings are important. We don't feel you need to be faced with this issue when you come here to discuss pet rabbits. This is why we do our best to keep meat rabbit discussions separate from general topics.
 

KelleyBee

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I don't want to interrupt and I know that there's meat rabbits but I always think it's weird when people make food with their rabbits they grew up
My apologies for placing my question in the wrong place. I don’t know what I did wrong because I thought I was in the correct forum. I’ll be more careful moving forward. Just to give you a peek into my head regarding your concern. For me, I’ve come to a place in my life where I need to know that the food I am consuming is raised humanely, is clean (free from artificial hormones, antibiotics and other drugs and chemicals) and that I am as self-sufficient as possible in obtaining my food. It’s a lot of work to raise one’s own food: vegetables, fruits and meat, alike. I’m no different than most people in that I would prefer the ease of just getting my food from the grocer or the local farm markets. I’m soon to be 60, so I have been trusting other people to raise my food for a very long time. But now, relying 100 percent upon others for one of our most basic needs is no longer an option for me. I don’t live on a farm, so I can’t raise chickens, beef cows and pigs, otherwise I would. Instead, I’m in a neighborhood and rabbits are perfect in such a situation because they are quiet and clean. Even more clean when you have a diligent owner like myself. I’m not at all happy that my doe spoken about here must be culled. It wasn’t an easy decision for me, but she draws my blood on a regular basis. None of my other rabbits do this, so it’s not because of something to do with me as a caregiver, but some anomaly with her. Because of this behavior I cannot offer her as a pet to anyone. That would be irresponsible of me and could end her up in a very bad situation due to her behavior. The most humane thing to do is care well for her until the time comes to cull her. Because rabbit meat is such high quality protein, I will not allow her loss as part of my herd to go to complete waste when she can at least provide a couple of decent, clean meals to my family. She’s been fed clean fresh greens from my gardens and yard for many months, all lovingly grown and hand picked for her by me. I also provide a quality pellet, black oil sunflower seeds, oats, fresh water twice daily and have gone to great expense and effort to provide her with a clean living environment. Even with all the love and care I’ve given her, just as Maggie has explained, in the end she is livestock and has never been a pet. She doesn’t even have the qualities necessary to be a pet because of her aggression.
 

RabbitsOfTheCreek

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I have a new question about this particular doe. Although she continues to be aggressive in her cage, once I have her out and in my arms, she is fine, has never bitten me, responds exactly like all of my other rabbits. Your thought
I've had that same problem with Taffy.I think it's because they want to spend more time with their person and don't like being in a cage/hutch
 

Ducklove74

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I have a new question about this particular doe. Although she continues to be aggressive in her cage, once I have her out and in my arms, she is fine, has never bitten me, responds exactly like all of my other rabbits. Your thoughts
Rabbits are territorial animals, especially does. This is why we always take girls to boys hutch or neutral ground when breeding. I would just continue working with her on getting to see you are positive experience on neutral ground. You could also spend time at her hutch just talking to her opening cage door and such without trying to reach in for her. Usually, they will eventually warm up and start to come to you...not always but I do find this works majority of the time. It's a slow process not rushed.
 
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KelleyBee

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Rabbits are territorial animals, especially does. This is why we always take girls to boys hutch or neutral ground when breeding. I would just continue working with her on getting to see you are positive experience on neutral ground. You could also spend time at her hutch just talking to her opening cage door and such without trying to reach in for her. Usually, they will eventually warm up and start to come to you...not always but I do find this works majority of the time. It's a slow process not rushed.
I will give this a try. I got her at 8 months, rather than at 8 weeks. She came with a litter-mate sister and an older brother (he was 1.5 yrs old when he came) who are who is just as stand-offish towards me but they have not been biters. She was not biting until she had her first litter. Her sister has her first litter at the same time and tho protective, she’s never bitten me.
 
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eco2pia

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I have an older doe who is also growly and has bitten my (adult) son once. She was a pet in an adult household with responsible people previously, so I I find her behavior a little baffling, but I suspect they may have opted to send her down the road for just this reason--They still have other pet rabbits. Maybe they were too gentle and passive? I don't know. Some does are just like that.

I have been handling her firmly but gently for about 6 months and she is still a cantankerous stinker. She does not savage the buck, all her offspring are destined for freezer camp, and so in a way, I don't really care. As long as she raises her litters well and does not manage to draw blood again, she can stay. One day I will cheerfully replace her with a daughter from my other doe or an unrelated pedigreed doe. Until then, she doesn't have to be my best friend.

I enjoy my buck and other doe, and of course the kits. It is just that I don't need her to be a pet.

When I do replace her, that rabbit pie recipe looks mighty good. :)
 

MnCanary

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I've had good results with a raisin. One raisin. At first, I made sure she saw me put it in the pellet dish. Eventually, she would come up to me, and soon was eating the raisin out of my hand. Rabbits love raisins. One raisin a day isn't enough to cause issues with their digestion.

Also, it may be that she smells the other rabbits on your hands or clothing. Try working with her before you work with the other rabbits.
 

ladysown

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I would move her to a different cage, or a bigger one. Rabbits are funny. Sometimes a cage change is all it takes. But seriously aggressive does... cull them. It takes just as much effort (or perhaps less) to raise non-aggressive does for the same payout.
 
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Echoing ladysown's statement about culling a seriously aggressive doe. I had a doe from the sweetest mother turn out to be a real brat. She would attack me no matter where she was: in her enclosure, in a new enclosure I built just for her, out in the yard, etc. I tried a litter with her to see if it mellowed her and it did for a bit, but then right back to drawing blood. I replaced her with a doe from her litter, who was the sweetest little girl until right around breeding age. Then she drew blood more than her mother! As others have noted in this forum before, it seems like aggression can be passed onto offspring. It was a shame because they were excellent producers, but I don't need any more scars 😅 The time spent tip-toeing around an aggressive doe definitely made it much more effort compared to her sister who has been nothing but sweet to me.
 

KelleyBee

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Echoing ladysown's statement about culling a seriously aggressive doe. I had a doe from the sweetest mother turn out to be a real brat. She would attack me no matter where she was: in her enclosure, in a new enclosure I built just for her, out in the yard, etc. I tried a litter with her to see if it mellowed her and it did for a bit, but then right back to drawing blood. I replaced her with a doe from her litter, who was the sweetest little girl until right around breeding age. Then she drew blood more than her mother! As others have noted in this forum before, it seems like aggression can be passed onto offspring. It was a shame because they were excellent producers, but I don't need any more scars 😅 The time spent tip-toeing around an aggressive doe definitely made it much more effort compared to her sister who has been nothing but sweet to me.
Thank you for sharing your experience.
 

Softie

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So, it's your choice, of course. My experience with our aggresive Californian was:
1)adopted at a year+and she had kindled. "Bad mother and aggressive" was the warning. I got the Rex trio and this one thrown in. I was going to practice on her (freezer camp). Hubs said he wanted to try and tame her. Farmer who gave her to me said, "She changed totally after her first litter, maybe she saw me harvest them and got mad?" Hubs saw her behavior and strong survival instinct. She lives alone now in a 8X8 pen, digs, enjoys the sun, and had another litter. She had three, over a couple of days I am pretty sure - that was interesting. She buried them in different places. I thought she was killing them. I tried to return them to her but she rejected them. Only, not....because two grew. One baby died very early. It crawled out of the pen and she could not get to it. She would dig them up and feed them, then bury them again. They were wild. They screamed when held. One of them climbed the 4' fence and explored the farm at 3 weeks, and came back for nursing! We caught it a couple times! After that was discovered, I moved them indoors. Hubs went every day to give her a bit of carrot by hand. She stopped attacking. She now goes willingly into her cage at night in her outdoor pen. I sold one kit and the other is tamed enough to be with the other Rex does. FWIW.
 

hotzcatz

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We breed for temperament so don't have any aggressive buns, but the buns here are angoras and get handled a lot.

It sounds perhaps as if your doe is protecting her territory? Switch her to a new space and see if she mellows out. I'm always switching the buns to new spaces so eventually they all seem part of a collective, perhaps? Not too many territorial buns here for whatever reason, I'd guess either from switching them around or from breeding or possibly from both.
 

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