I didn’t know what to do for the letter G so I asked people on the homeschool review crew forum for suggestions.
They suggested: Gestation, Giant Breeds, Grooming. They also suggested other posts like “buying your first bunny and Growing bunnies” but those are posts for another day. So today I talk about the G’s of rabbits
Most rabbits, I’d say 90% in my experience, will kindle (have babies) 31 days after mating. Gestation is very easy on rabbits and rarely do you see any sort of strain on the momma. The earliest I’ve had them come in is 28 days the latest was 38 days.
Sometimes you will see hormonal differences, momma rabbit either become more mellow or becoming more space protective.
Breeders will sometimes, between day 11-14, palpate to see if the doe is bred. I choose not to do this, figuring 30 days is nothing to wait and I normally have bunnies on a schedule and why mess with it?
People have this misconception that rabbits can have two pregnancies at one time. This is WRONG. Although rabbits have two tubes, they only have one pregnancy at a time. The misconception is due to the fact that rabbits can reabsorb their kits. If they start to do that, and then deliver their babies, the size difference and seemingly different developmental stage causes people to think separate pregnancies.
Most rabbits need very little in the way of grooming. Like many animals, rabbits groom themselves quite handily. They occasionally need help, like baby bunnies as they are learning to care for themselves, or injured rabbits needing support.
The main time they need help is during their moult. Just like with dogs, rabbits sometimes need a good brush out when moulting. This is really easy to do. Just dampen your hands and run them through your bunnies coat against the grain. Rub off the gathered hair and repeat until all the loose hair is out of the coat. Sometimes you will need to actually pluck the loose hair out, especially around the tail/rear end area.
In the picture above I have Horatio sitting on a plank over my compost big. Horatio was in a very heavy moult and was miserable. I brought him out every day for about 8 days and plucked out the loose fur on his back end as well and running my hands backwards over this body. He was so much happier when we finished everyday. Took about 5 minutes daily. The hair you see sticking out is a tuff that needs to be plucked.
The most common giant breed in North America the Flemish Giant. These are a lovely breed of rabbit. Miss Wafer pictured below is the largest rabbit I have at 16 lbs. Her dad was a Flemish Giant. She’s a big girl but not nearly the biggest rabbit I’ve ever seen. They are known as the gentle giant, but mind you… they aren’t all docile or gentle. Wafer can be bossy. I’ve known others that nippy. On average they make excellent pets or breeding animals. They aren’t great as meat animals due to their large boney frames and slow maturation..
Just for Fun! Guinea Pigs!!!!
Others in this Series
Letter G Link Up
Each week we will be linking up with the hosts of Blogging Through the Alphabet. Please visit some of these other blogs to get things like book lists, vegan recipes, and wonderful places to visit, just to name the topics I can think of off the top of my head.