When my husband and I were first wed, he bought me a Siamese Satin rabbit. She was a beautiful rabbit with very soft fur, softer then most other bunnies. She was a very expensive breed.
Several of my friends found out about my rabbit. Because she was litter box trained, and leash trained, and Easter was near- they decided to get their kids a rabbit.
After several months, they became bored with taking care of their kids pet, and the things the rabbit would do, and the smell of its urine, from not changing the cage often enough. So, they gave their rabbits to me.
Through this, I became a rabbit breeder.
As with anything, there are pros and cons. It takes a lot of time, and of course money. You’ve got the cost of food, the cage changing, the feeding, to say the least.
Rabbits are just like dogs and cats, they too- can be trained. They can learn to walk on leashes, and be litter trained, to use the litter box. It depends on you, the trainer, as well as the temperament of your rabbit.
Please note, to walk your rabbit on a leash, use a harness NOT a collar. The harness goes under the and behind the front legs and makes it safer on the rabbit. If you use a typical collar, you can easily snap the rabbits neck.
Rabbits can and will bond with their owner. This will help you in the taming process, as well as breeding. Even if you are intending to breed your rabbits for food, you will still want to make a relationship with them, just like you- the animal needs kept happy.
The way to determine the sex of your rabbit, is just like with any other animal. A female, has what is referred to as, a “rosebud.” A Male of course, has the typical male genitalia. Just like any other female breed, the female rabbit does menstruate.
If a female rabbit is ready to be bred, and there are several different males around, do not put them together, because they will fight to the death. When breeding your female, only one male is needed at a time. Rabbits can have many, many litters a year, and can give birth to many rabbits per litter. Sometimes the female may choose to stomp several of the babies, for a multiple of reasons. Including if the rabbit didn’t want to have babies, if it didn’t want bred, if it doesn’t like its living conditions, or if it feels it is being neglected.
A rabbit can run around your house just like a dog or cat. But be forewarned, the urine smell from it; is very strong smelling. It has a strong acid content to it. Also be aware, rabbits like to nibble, and this will include electric wires, walls, and clothing. Especially once bred and seeking to make a nest, the female will want softness in her nest, such as clothing.
When your rabbit does make its nest, it will pull out large quantities of its fur. This is normal. This is to protect the young, and keep them warm and safe.
Rabbits eat greens, such as lettuce, celery, grass, and carrots. But you cannot have them survive on greens alone. They also need solids, such as store bought rabbit pellets, and occasionally bread is a good choice.
When your baby bunnies start to move around and investigate the food dish, along with the greens and pellets, oats is a nice and healthy touch. Not cooked, dry. Oats help with the digestive track, so yes- even the adult rabbits will like this too.
When I was breeding, and taking tips from another breeder, he told me never ever to feed your rabbits cabbage and corn. He told me that corn is not good for any animal, including humans. Because no one can digest it properly. As for the cabbage, he proceeded to tell me that it causes “gas” and that rabbits cannot “fart”. Whether or not it is true, I never tested the theory and avoided both cabbage and corn for my pets.
But! On the same token, I did have a garden, and the wild rabbits ate from it, including the cabbage. They did however avoid several ivy plants near the garden, that are known poisonous. To me, that proved the mans theory wrong, because the animal knew what was good for it, and what wasn’t.
If you raise your rabbits with cats and dogs, they will all get along. One of my females liked to pretend she was a dog, and even made a barking noise when the dogs barked!
Rabbits do like to dig on occasion, and sometimes they will even eat the dirt. This is normal, there are nutrients in the dirt that rabbit needs.
Rabbits, because they have fur, can get fleas just like dogs and cats. If you feel the need to give them a flea bath, do not get anything in their ears. Sure a rabbit can shake and kick its ears, but it will never get all of the water out, and chances are high it will end up with an infection.
When breeding, it is highly suggested to breed with the same breed. For example, the lop eared rabbits have ears that hang down. Breeding it with a rabbit with up right ears, can cause you to produce a rabbit (or two even!) with one ear lop and the other ear up right.
If you ever want to “show” your rabbits in a contest, they will not allow rabbits with deformities, and mix breeding. And if you actually get your rabbit into the show, chances are slim you will win any type of award, because of the way your rabbit looks when bred wrong.
When you have a rabbit whereas it is divided down the middle of the back with coloration, and the two sides look identical, this is a good show rabbit. When you have a rabbit that has a divide in the middle of its back, and the sides are not the same, this is not a good show rabbit, this is better of being a domestic pet.
Rabbits, just like your dogs and cats, will need its nails trimmed from time to time, and sometimes even their teeth can be known to get out of hand and grow extensively long. The teeth, is something you will definitely need a veterinarian to do. The nails you can do yourself with nail clippers.
A pet rabbit is not a good choice for a young child. The reason being, is because children will try to put their fingers in the rabbits mouth, and the rabbit may in turn nibble, thinking it is food.
Clean your cages on a daily basis, because the odor can and will get out of hand. And even if you are a breeder, you still need to talk to your pets, even if it is just when you are feeding them. This will help to calm your rabbit, and build a trust. Rabbits have feelings too!
Rabbits can be used for food, and for fur. Many people I know personally, myself included have tasted rabbit, and say- it tastes just like chicken!
There are many different breeds of rabbits out there. I strongly advise doing more research if you are considering a rabbit for a pet, or even considering becoming a breeder.