Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Raising Rabbits Developing Countries

For information about raising rabbits in developing countries you should read "The Rabbit: Husbandry, Health and Production" published Food and Ag Organization of the UN. It's written by French authors though translated into English. You can view it online at

Download PDF document (14.5MB)

Have a good day!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

ARBA Care of Rabbits and Cavies Doc

From American Rabbit Breeders Association
ARBA Recommendations for the Care of Rabbits and Cavies
This document is being created in order to provide guidance to all individuals who care for rabbits and cavies for the  purposes of pets, show animals, commercial uses (i.e. food, fiber,and exhibition) and laboratory uses. This document is also meant to serve as a guide for individuals who serve in animal welfare and regulatory organizations. These recommendations provide a general guidance on the best practices in caring for rabbits and cavies. These recommendations are meant to work in conjunction with the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) giving more concrete definition to the AWA and are not meant to supersede the AWA for those who are bound to follow the AWA for regulatory compliance.

You can download the complete document at this link

Share this document  on your website!
Have a good day!

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Mission statement

*re-post from July 21 2005*
This is my response to the bogus reporter. Slightly edited for
coherency. Message follows:

I can tell that you are very passionate about your
rabbit rescue project.

You look at rabbits differently than I do.

I look at the rabbit in our culture and in world
culture. Have you read the myth/story about the
rabbit in the moon? You can read it at the following

Did you know there was a rabbit in the moon story in
Mayan mythology?

And that wonderful book "Watership Down" is one of my
favorites, because I can see the different
personalities in my rabbits.

I look at rabbits in the historical sense. Did you
know that in the 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s there were
millions of rabbits in hundreds of farms around the
USA providing food, fur, and employment to people? Did
you know that the Angora rabbits with their wool
production provided nations with income and provides
handspinners with a premium wool product even to this

I look at rabbits in the preservation sense. Did you
know there are many rabbits breeds that were developed
in the USA that have now almost disappeared? The
American Blue and White, the American Chinchilla, the
American Sable?

These heritage breeds are almost gone except for
handfuls of rabbit breeders who keep the bloodlines
going and prevent extinction. Did you know the
American Livestock Breeds Conservancy will be adding
rabbits to their preservation project this year?

I look at rabbits in the natural sense. The rabbits
are the natural food source for many wild animals.
As a former wildlife re-habber I genuinely appreciate
the little rabbits and their contribution to saving
other animals lives. They also provide a premium protein
for zoo animals, like at the San Francisco zoo.

I look at rabbits in a worldwide view, where rabbits
are not only pets, but also an economical food source
for people.

As a food source for people, did you know that Heifer
International project includes rabbits as a food animal
in developing nations besides goats, cows, sheep, etc?

Did you know I protest those governments who release
deadly VHD into the environment to wage biological
warefare on the rabbits in their countries? I protest
the import of rabbit products from China which is a
known source of infectious rabbit disease and
represents a danger to our domestic rabbit population.

You are narrowly focused on one aspect of the rabbit
world. You are focused on the rabbits in the shelters
which are a tiny percentage of all the rabbits in the

While you are trying to save one life a time, I am
working to preserve breeds that may become extinct, I
am working to preserve an industry and a way of life.
I am trying to promote appreciation of rabbits on a
worldwide basis.

And thank you for the pictures of the rescued dogs and
rabbits that you saved. They look very nice and I hope
you found them nice homes with good people who meet
your standards.

You have already judged me and convicted me in your
mind so I don't know why you would continue to write
to me.

*** End of message quoted ****

So there is my view of the rabbit world. I must keep a realistic point
of view or my worldview will crumble when it bumps up against reality.

I think I have the basis for some kind of mission statement related to
my rabbit activities. And I do like pet bunnies. We have rabbits here
that other people would have taken to the shelter because they are no
longer good for rabbits shows, but they were good rabbits for us so we
offer them a good home if we cannot find them a good home.

Our first bunny, Snowflake, was a Red Eyed White Netherland Dwarf we
bought from a feed store, but he had the heart of a champion. He won
blue ribbons at the County Fair three years in a row! Big Autumn was
a shelter bunny we brought home. We loved taking him to the 4H
meetings and rabbits shows to have the judges try to guess what kind
of rabbit he was. Our best guess was that he was a New Zealand
Chestnut Agouti, which is the color you often get when you breed a NZ
White and NZ Black.

Blue Berry Bonds is a Grand Champion Dutch bunny who lives in my son's
room. He is no longer taken to shows, he has a chronic respiratory
problem that cause him to wheeze when he breathes. But otherwise, he
is active and healthy.

Rabbits not only live one life at a time, they live on in their
bloodlines. Blue Berry Bonds was born here and has daughters and other
grandchildren that will live on after him. I look at pedigrees, which
are the family trees of rabbits, and I smile when I see a rabbit's
name referenced from a long time ago. Jake the REW, Twinkle the Black
Dutch doe, Scooter and Skater the Harlequin Dutch bucks, Squirt,
Jefferson, Madison, Dolly, Chinkilla, Batgirl, and on and on.

One last note, all of my experience with using rabbit meat for
wildlife rehabilitation involved rabbits that were put to sleep
humanely before being offered as food to rescued carnivores. I have
not and would not give a live rabbit to another animal as food. That
is too scary for the rabbit and totally unnecessary! :(

Have a good day!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Feed your rabbit this much

How to know how much  to feed the rabbit. The trick is to weigh the feed. Weigh an empty tuna can. Weigh the tuna can full of feed. Subtract weight of empty tuna can. Say it holds 4 ounces of feed. The rule of thumb used to be that you would feed each day one ounce of feed per pound of rabbit. 8 lb rabbit gets 8 oz of feed per day. Now you can calculate two cans of feed per day. Some feeds are more or less dense so weight can vary. Lately the research shows that rabbit can be healthy on less feed than 1 oz per lb per day. So if rabbit has left over feed the next day, make a note and cut back on feed until you know how much rabbit eats each day. Your mileage may vary.

Havea good day!