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Yozer245
28-01-2009, 02:06 AM
Hey everybody,

As you know, I'm new here. But first I need your help please!

In late May or so, I will be getting 2 Show Quality Dwarf Hotots for $25 CAN each. One kit female (7 weeks old at that time) and an older male. I have decided I want to breed some Dwarf Hotots and sell them.
After asking so many people and going to forums for rabbit breeding, I found out that it is not very easy. I also found that I need a nest box and two cages (for the male after mating). Usually Dwarf Hotots should eat 1/4 cup per day. So, I have questions for you guys to answer please:

What items do I have to have for breeding?

Do I put anything (hay, wood shavings, etc.) in the nest box?

Do I double the food for the mother when she is pregnant?

Do I seperate the male right after he mates with the mother?

When do they mate?

How many times do they mate?

What if I was away when they are mating?

How long does it take for the mother to be pregnant?

What kind of bedding should I use and what is the best and cheapest?

So, these are the questions. BUT PLEASE, TELL ME EVERYTHING (WHAT TO DO) FROM WHEN I GET THE BUNNIES 'TIL THE KITS GROW UP (6 WEEKS OLD OR SO) AND WHAT ITEMS I NEED FOR BREEDING

Please reply ASAP,

Yozer245

Hugbut
28-01-2009, 10:29 AM
Hey everybody,

As you know, I'm new here. But first I need your help please!

In late May or so, I will be getting 2 Show Quality Dwarf Hotots for $25 CAN each. One kit female (7 weeks old at that time) and an older male. I have decided I want to breed some Dwarf Hotots and sell them.
After asking so many people and going to forums for rabbit breeding, I found out that it is not very easy. I also found that I need a nest box and two cages (for the male after mating). Usually Dwarf Hotots should eat 1/4 cup per day. So, I have questions for you guys to answer please:

What items do I have to have for breeding?

Do I put anything (hay, wood shavings, etc.) in the nest box?

Do I double the food for the mother when she is pregnant?

Do I seperate the male right after he mates with the mother?

When do they mate?

How many times do they mate?

What if I was away when they are mating?

How long does it take for the mother to be pregnant?

What kind of bedding should I use and what is the best and cheapest?

So, these are the questions. BUT PLEASE, TELL ME EVERYTHING (WHAT TO DO) FROM WHEN I GET THE BUNNIES 'TIL THE KITS GROW UP (6 WEEKS OLD OR SO) AND WHAT ITEMS I NEED FOR BREEDING

Please reply ASAP,

Yozer245

I don't agreee with breeding rabbits when there are so many unwanted buns in the world.If you do not know anything about rabbits you should not even consider getting one, let alone breeding from them. Sounds to me like you want to make a quick buck. :roll:

Bunshine
28-01-2009, 10:44 AM
I kind of agree with hugbut, but will say that you can get loads of advice about rabbits on here. I'm new and the people here are really helpful and friendly. Try searching through the forums.

I was just wondering where you'd got the idea to breed rabbits from and if you were planning on selling them for showing? What about the ones that aren't showable? Maybe it would be best if you just did some research and got a couple of rabbits as pets first? They are lovely and you can have so much fun with them without breeding or or making money.

devoted2buns
28-01-2009, 10:47 AM
I agree, many rabbits die of neglect because there are just too many of them being sold to anyone and everyone. Why do you want to breed rabbits? Its not something that should be taken up as a hobby. There are so many rabbits in rescues looking for homes, your just be adding to the problem. :roll:

ZakuraRabbit
28-01-2009, 01:40 PM
I don't think you're gonna get a lot of help on this forum as its mostly a rescue based and some are against breeding... I'm against unserious breeding too, so you should give this A LOT of thought before you even consider breeding them, both because its not as easy as some may think and because of the rabbits in rescues that need good homes.

As for the questions:


Do I put anything (hay, wood shavings, etc.) in the nest box?
I put hay or straw in the box, but the female will make her own nest even if you don't.

Do I double the food for the mother when she is pregnant?
No. She shouldn't be fed a lot extra while pregnant because if she gets overweight the birth can be difficult.

Do I seperate the male right after he mates with the mother?
Yes. And I cannot stress this enough. DON'T KEEP THE MALE AND FEMALE TOGETHER! If the father is there after the birth he will most likely mate her again soon after the birth which is very unhealthy and causes unnecessary stress. I even had to separate a breeding pair at work today because the female had been bitten...and they came together yesterday.

When do they mate?
Immediately after you put them together.

How many times do they mate?
As much as they can.

What if I was away when they are mating?
You shouldn't. As I said you should never keep them together unless you are there to watch them!

How long does it take for the mother o be pregnant?
Ridiculously fast.

What kind of bedding should I use and what is the best and cheapest?
I have no idea what's available where you live. I just use shavings.


Personally I don't think you are ready to start breeding.
What DO you know about rabbits? They are not toys, and if this isn't done correctly it can end disastrous.

Do you know when they become fertile? When the female should be bred?
Baby bunnies can become fertile as soon as 10-12 weeks, but breeding them at this time is like allowing a 11-year old child to become pregnant. Also your doe is a tad bit too young to be sold... she should be 8 weeks (7 weeks is "okay" but just a head's up as you should know this if you're gonna breed them)

Rabbits shouldn't be bred before they are 6-8 months. You just need to put them together for a few minutes for her to become pregnant, they need not, and SHOULD not be together any longer.

What will you do with the babies? Think they're easy to sell? Think again!
I had 12 baby rabbits in one litter. 8 of them died shortly after birth because their mother couldn't feed them. 4 survived, and they were all male. I had two reserved...I sold those two and got stuck with the others. Because of a shortage of cages I kept them with their mother till they were 10 weeks before taking her out. Then they stayed together until they turned 4 months before they could start fighting.
I only just managed to find a home for the one I planned to sell, and he was 7 months old at the time. Many young rabbits get put to sleep because no one can find a home for them, because of above mentioned reasons: too many rabbits in need of home.

Personally if these are your first rabbits at least, I recommend getting them neutered and keep them as pets. Don't breed before you're sure you know enough about them to take care of them please. :wave:

William
28-01-2009, 01:46 PM
You sound like a complete noob to rabbits so my advice is to not breed. Or even get any rabbits if all you care about is the money. they'll end up costing more than what you sell the babies for, if you do it right so there's really no point.

applebed
28-01-2009, 01:50 PM
ZakuraRabbit's post is very good. I will also say that even if you do find homes for the kits, I've heard it's very difficult to make a profit...
Ah, I see that William has posted the same thing!

ZakuraRabbit
28-01-2009, 01:58 PM
ZakuraRabbit's post is very good. I will also say that even if you do find homes for the kits, I've heard it's very difficult to make a profit...
Ah, I see that William has posted the same thing!

Yeah, profit...I didn't even think about that when I bred mine.
After all I spent a lot of food trying to make the babies make it (which as mentioned all did not) one was sold, one was given to the school as payment for letting me have the babies at school, and the last one..the one I had till he was 7 months, I gave away from free. I didn't make money at all. :roll:
Sure I got 200 NOK for that one rabbit... which is about the same as one bag of my rabbit food costs... :roll:

Sky-O
29-01-2009, 09:39 AM
I think ZakuraRabbits post is excellent too, but I am also going to reply.

I think you are not knowledgable enough right now to start breeding. You need to learn more about it and look into it more. You need to talk to Hotot breeders specifically and find out about the problems they have as a specific breed.

What items do I have to have for breeding? You need separate accommodation before they breed. You need a nest box. You need to be ready to deal with any emergencies that arise (be that by taking them to the vet, helping mum, whatever is needed for that).

Do I put anything (hay, wood shavings, etc.) in the nest box? You will need to use hay, and different people line their nest boxes with different things.

Do I double the food for the mother when she is pregnant?

Do I seperate the male right after he mates with the mother? No, you keep her on the same amount of food until after she has kindled and then you gradually increase it because she will need to eat more to produce milk.

When do they mate? They will mate when you put them together. You will need to find out what mating procedures work best for Hotots.

How many times do they mate? Again, that depends how many times you put them together. You will need, again, to ask a Hotot breeder how they do it.

What if I was away when they are mating? Well, I would sincerely hope you aren't given they need strict supervision.

How long does it take for the mother to be pregnant? A doe is an induced ovulator so can get pregnant from the first mating. She Will be pregnant for 31 days, ish, but will need the nest box at 28 days/

What kind of bedding should I use and what is the best and cheapest? Hay, I would suggest.

To be honest, you sound very unknowledgable at a very basic level, and you also sound like you are going to be an irresponsible backyard breeder, which no one will condone, not reputable breeders, or anyone else.

You can't keep them together. They need their own space. They each need their own hutch, right from the word go. She, in particular, will not cope with another bun in her territory when she is pregnant. She could attack him, or worse. She would also be likely to attack her babies too. In addition, like ZakuraRabbit said, she would almost immediately get pregnant after kindling, which woiuld put her and the kits at risk.

Something else to think about is that Hotot's are prone to megacolon issues (the same gene that gives them their markings also affects their gut apparently), how will you cope if any of them have this, or the kits are not healthy? You will have to keep any unhealthy kits.

How will you make sure they go to good homes? To be a breeder you will need to educate any potential owners about accommodation, health, diet, behaviour, speutering, the lot. Do you have enough knowledge to be able to do that successfully?

Can you afford an emergency spay or emergency medical attention in the middle of the night? How will you monitor her if she kindles in the middle of the night? If she has a stuck kit, what will you do? Are you prepared to face losing her?

Something else to think about is the genetics of the buns. If the breeder is selling them, does she know you are going to breed. You will need to check these buns have the right genes to breed or else you will be knowingly producing kits that could have complications. Breeders sell rabbits for pet quality when they can't/shouldn't be bred from, so you really need to emphasis what you are doing.

Most decent breeders will breed a proven doe at the same time as a new mum so that they have a foster mum available to them. Will you be able to do that? If not, what will you do if mum dies, or doesn't produce milk, or reduces them, because hand rearing is normally unsuccessful.

Personally, I think you need to find a mentor who already breeds Hotos, and work with them.

I think you really need to think about why you want to breed. Any decent and responsible breeder will do a lot of research first. You say you have done some, but you are lacking in knowledge at the very basic level, and that, as well as specific Hotot info, is what you need to work on.

Lucy
29-01-2009, 09:45 AM
I think you should gain a lot more experience in keeping rabbits before thinking about breeding. If and when you decide to breed, you should do it under guidance of someone that is very experienced and can help you and guide you.

All that said, I feel that there are enough rabbits in the world without adding to them and the problems rescues face rehoming the unwanted ones.

sandygirl
29-01-2009, 10:48 AM
As I have mentioned elsewhere on the forum, I ended up with a litter of 7 nethies (not intentionally)
The runt has cost me a small fortune at the vets but that was nothing compared to the anxious wait to see if a 250g bunny is going to come out of the ga okay.
He has reached a lb now though so he is doing really well :)

Breeding is not for the faint hearted, my bunnies are pets and I take full responsibility for the medical needs of my little runt but I have heard that more serious breeders have to make tough decisions in situations like that. That alone should be enough to make any rabbit lover think twice.

Bunnyaddict
29-01-2009, 11:06 AM
I'm so sorry but I am completely against breeding rabbits - there are far too many around the world that have been neglected, abused or dumped in rescues because of people breeding them irresponsibly & unnecessarily :cry: