Long post....but I’m new to rabbits and need some guidance!!

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Chubbybunnies

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Hello everyone,

I have long dreamed about breeding rabbits, and have done some research over the past few years, but decided to jump on in up to my neck one Friday night at a livestock auction. I know, probably not the best place to find quality stock, but I wanted to experiment and learn before investing large amounts of money and hating it! We ended up with one white buck, a calico looking buck, a calico doe, a black doe (all more mature) and 2 white and 2 grey young does.

I had all the adults together, and the young ones in a separate cage. My wife likes the idea of the rabbits living on the ground, but after reading through many pages on here, may change that.

Surprise to us, the black doe was pregnant and had 3 kits 11 days ago. That’s when I found RT! Had no clue what to do, but they all survived and she seems to be a good mom! They are gaining weight around 2 ounces at one week. Is that good?

We moved the other three that were with her to their own cage.

Also, one of the young grey kits seemed to have a large (both long and thick) few spots on her hind quarters. Upon sexing them again to make sure they were all still what we thought they were, we noticed some other weird abnormalities about her, so I called her immediately. I did not want to, because I liked the color, but I figured it was the best for the stock. No redness around the vent, or sores on the nose.

I will try to get pictures up as soon as possible. If everything goes well with this stock, I may be looking intobgetting better stock! Fingers crossed!

ANY HELP, GUIDANCE, OR FOLLOW UP QUESTIONS TO HELP ME OUT WOULD BE HIGHLY ENCOURAGED!!

Thank you all for your wealth of knowledge and looking forward to this adventure!

Also, I live in south Florida, so heat will play a large factor in breeding.
 

michaels4gardens

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welcome to the world of Rabbits..
It will be a learning curve... so learn with what you got.. and enjoy the ride...
beware of the Florida heat...[you mentioned that]
best of luck, ...
 

Dood

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:welcome:

Sounds like you have jumped right into the deep end ;) but you'll learn a lot very quickly

Strict quarantine is usually recommended for at least 30 days as the stress of moving can cause suppressed diseases to rear their head. Upper respiratory infections and enteritis (diarrhea) are the two biggest concerns

Watch out for snot and/or crusty patches on the thumb area, which are left overs from rabbits wiping their noses. Neurological issues could indicate E. cuninculi infection and vent disease could also flare up during this time. I had to cull a buck I purchased as vent disease became apparent after 22 days of quarantine :( but better than getting my whole herd infected :)

I tried rabbits on the ground, but hepatic coccidia was was too rampant in my pastures from the wild cotton tail rabbits so I harvest "weeds" from the fields instead
 

dfr1973

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Chubbybunnies":1u0os02q said:
Also, I live in south Florida, so heat will play a large factor in breeding.
I'm a bit north of you, a transplant from even milder climate, and one lesson *learned the hard way* last year when I finally got bunnies breeding like rabbits was that in Florida, not all shade is equal. Have your bunnies under trees if at all possible, as trees' "breathing"/transpiration does actually make a difference. Also, keep as much air movement/flow for them in the really hot months, and I also do mineralized salt block in the summer.
 

Chubbybunnies

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Thanks for the encouraging words!

Dood, I did not know about quarantine until after I had them all mix together briefly at various points. Any new stock will be strictly quarantined for at least 30 days! Luckily, in the three years I have lived in my house, I have never seen a wild rabbit around. We are looking to move further out of town to a few acres, so that would be the reason for raising the rabbits off the ground.

Dfr1973, thanks for the heads up from someone raising rabbits in the same environment. I am worried about the heat this summer, but will keep a close eye on them. I will try to get a few picture up here in a little bit.

Any other words of wisdom is greatly encouraged.
 

LittleFluffyBunnies

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I wish you good luck with your new bunny adventure! Rabbits are a lot of fun and I'm sure you'll enjoy them a lot.

A tip for the heat.

If you know it's going to be a very hot day you can freeze water in soda bottles/milk jugs and put those in the cage/pen. The rabbits will lie against them to cool down.

If you see a rabbit overheating, get it in the shade and spray it's ears with cool(not cold) water. The blood vessels in the ears are near to the skin so they help cool the body down.
 

Chubbybunnies

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LittleFluffyBunnies":3foxfhpr said:
I wish you good luck with your new bunny adventure! Rabbits are a lot of fun and I'm sure you'll enjoy them a lot.

A tip for the heat.

If you know it's going to be a very hot day you can freeze water in soda bottles/milk jugs and put those in the cage/pen. The rabbits will lie against them to cool down.

If you see a rabbit overheating, get it in the shade and spray it's ears with cool(not cold) water. The blood vessels in the ears are near to the skin so they help cool the body down.

Thanks for the tip! That is something I have not seen on here before, but makes sense.
 

GBov

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Central Florida here, HI!!!

Shade shade shade, very important. Living shade, as already stated, is the best. I have mine at the east side of my house that has several huge oaks and even then, some of the cages get too much sun.

So my best friend is STYROFOAM!!! :lol: If you can get it, 5 inches thick is my favorite, 4 ft by 4 ft. My cages look really trashy but the buns are comfortable. It also works as sun breaks on the side of the cages because the sun moves round through the year.

WARNING, chickens eat styrofoam.

If you have the money, the bunker system for allowing the rabbits underground space is brilliant but I have moved too much to do it yet. Be sure to mix borax into your soil/sand fill though, and perhaps sulfur as well. Fireants don't like either. Somewhere on RT there is a thread about underground housing but I am sick today so shall not go searching for it, instead I shall have more tea and fret about not having enough cage space.

Oh, fans are good, they are very good BUT the fur tends to build up on them so keep them clean, otherwise, they are a fire hazard.

My rabbits hated ice bottles but many people use them.
 

WhiteRabbitFarm

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I'm in a similar situation in So. Alabama - just like So. Florida but less breeze! If your buns chew up the water bottles [as some do], there are other options. 1. Go to the dollar store and get a small metal loaf pan, punch a hole or two in one side near the rim at the top, add water and freeze overnight. Next day when it gets hot zip tie or string it tightly to the cage through the hole you made earlier. They can lay up against it to get cool and drink the cold water as it melts. At the end of the day snip the tie or string and freeze more for the next day. Also, 2. Go to your nearest big box home improvement store and get some large el-cheapo floor tiles, the ones that are like 78 cents a piece, and freeze those. They stay cold for quite a while and, even after they loose their cold are still cooler that the ambient temperature. If you do both you can put the tile under the loaf pan with some sticking out and they seem to keep each other colder longer. God bless you on your journey - buns are the best, and you're in for an adventure.
 

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