I have two pet rabbits, one male and one female. They are mixed breed and about 5 months old,
I wanted to breed them before I get them fixed. Today I put them together for an hour to see what happened, the female was very willing to mate and the male had about 6 fall offs with loud grunts. They are currently living in separate pens and are doing well. Here’s my questions:
Will she definitely be pregnant?
Do I need to put them together again? And what will happen if they breed again while she’s pregnant?
Should I breed them again on day fourteen to be sure she’s pregnant? I’ve heard this is dangerous though, what do you guys think?
It will be her first litter, is they’re anything bad that might happen that I should be prepared for?
thanks to everyone who reads this and answers my questions
First, I'd like to suggest that you make a plan right now for the offspring. Generic mixed pet rabbits are a dime a dozen here on Craigslist - people can't give them away. Rabbits are the third most abandoned animal in the USA and most live their lives in shelters. I'm an "eat my rabbits and feed them to snakes" kinda person, but the last thing I want is a rabbit going to some kid, getting paid attention to for 1-2 months, then living alone in an undersized cage or in a shelter for the next 6-10 years. Breed with intention, not just because.
Soapbox suggestion over, for your questions.
Will she definately be pregnant? Not necessarily. But she very likely is, depending on the ages of the rabbits.
Do you need to put them together again? Only if you're within about 30 hours of the first breeding. generally if a buck is successful a few times there's no need but it can help make sure you get a big successful litter.
What will happen if you breed while pregnant/on day 14? Well this can result in two pregnancies at the same time and cause major complications because rabbits have two very large uterine horns for holding kits and get pregnant in both at different times. At best it does nothing. At worst you lose both litters to early abortion. On day 14 you're only a week away from finding out if she's gonna nest anyhow - why wouldn't you just wait the 7-10 days for the litter?
Things going wrong on her first litter? Yeah, everything goes wrong on their first litters. About half of all first litters fail miserably. Be prepared for;
Kits to be stillborn, too few to stay warm outdoors or oversized.
No nest and/or kits scattered all over in the cage.
No pulled fur in the nest so the kits chill
Half eaten cannibalized or seriously mauled-injured kits.
Mom to just not feed them.
Mom to produce enough milk for only about half of them.
Mom to pull kits out of the nest box at meal times by hopping out before they're full.
Usually by their third successful pregnancy (as in, their third time they reach full term) they have being a mom figured out and most litters are smooth. And yet lots of these still on the list of things to watch for.
And do remember if it's still cold where you are (we had snow 3 days ago) that a kit isn't dead unless it's WARM and dead. Hypothermia looks a lot like death.
Hello, please call me Mouse. Talk to me about rabbits, chickens, and gardens. Starting an intentional community in Ohio.
I am unclear WHY you are breeding these rabbits; where I live they actually are the most common dumped animal (cats and dogs are all pretty much speutered, no such thing as at large dogs here; cats too now must be confined to owner property in cities), and by dumped I mean turned loose. You say they are mixed breed, pet rabbits, so it makes no sense to me to breed them, especially when they are a dime a dozen. IF you were raising meat rabbits, or purebreds I would get it, but generic pet bunnies, at least here, would be a nightmare to get good, quality homes for who would not lose interest and ignore them or dump them. Off MY soapbox now.
Rabbits are unlike humans or dogs; they are spontaneous ovulators - males jumps her, she drops eggs, bam.
She can literally conceive, the day she gives birth, and will, if the male has access!!!
As mentioned, first litters are commonly disastrous whether due to inexperience or what I do not know, but they commonly do not prepare for them, ignore them, refuse to feed them, care for them or out and out eat them. They are notoriously difficult to bottle feed, aspirating formula, or refusing. How do I know? I get the call to "save" another litter of generic bunny babies, that I tube feed every few hours for weeks, slowly get them large enough to wean, socialize them, get them on solids, and independent, only to have the original caller refuse to take them back because in the interim, the Mum bunny has popped a second litter, and now they do not want these babies I spent the last six weeks hand raising for free!!!
Anyhow, keep them apart, WELL apart, not next door to each other, not even with wire between them; and make sure both cages have securely locking lids. I cannot tell you how many accidental litters somehow occur with rabbits in separate cages until the male is neutered and the female spayed - and don't forget to check if Rabbit Hemorrhagic Fever is prevalent in your area, if so they will need annual vaccinations.
Lorinne Anderson: Specializing in sick, injured, orphaned and problem wildlife for over 20 years.
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