Any one keep rabbits and can offer advice?

deja224

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help! took on some rescuse rabbits they have a 6 foot run loads of stuff to do hay ball ect and yet one keeps making burrows there not tiny! wonder if she is thinking of giving birth (lived with a male) but she doesnt look like it be great for some advice as the lawn is full of craters!!!
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rabbit in question
 

Ellies_mum2

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If she's pulling fur out of her chest and making a nest then you probably have a lot of babies on the way rather soon.

However rabbits are burrowing creatures so maybe she's doing what comes naturally?
 

deja224

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no shes not spayed as far as i no as i say i rescued them yea pulling hair out not sure where from but its over the run can put mesh over bottom as woods no thick enough to nail it on
 

missshell

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I think a trip to the vets is in order to see if shes pregnant. Spayed rabbits can show signs of nesting so she may not be, but if she had been in with an un neutered male then chances are she is.
 

Toby_Zaphod

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You'll need to have her spayed wether she's paired up or not. If you don't there is a high likelihood that she will get cancer of the ovaries & that is extremely serious.

Regarding the diging of holes.....well that's what bunnies do! Wire netting on the floor will probably lead to injuries & vet bills. Ours have the hutches & the run of the patio & are out in the garden for several hours each day. Ensure that your fences etc are all secure & bunny proof though. (We've kept bunnies for many years)
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Henbug

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I had a female rabbit that did exactly the same. I had here since she was baby, she was never kept with a male but she wasn't spayed. She did it because she was trying to make a nest and wanted to have a litter(????). I would say a trip to the vet was a good idea to check if she is pregnant and if not then to get her spayed.
 

deja224

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shes not handled no the people i rescued her from let there rabbits breed and didnt bother handling them im trying to but they bite and kick well end up with blood every where (frome me!)
 

missshell

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Ah right. well if the previous owners bred then I would say she is pregnant. You'll have to shoo her into a carrier or something (however you got her home) and take her to the vets. They can confirm if shes pregnant and advise you what to do next. Good luck!
 

Lottyhorse

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My two female rabbits who are both spayed dig quite impressive burrows, it's what bunnies do. It seems to lessen if that have plenty of grass/dandilions pulled up and put in the run (assuming you have no grass left where they currently are). I often think it's the call of the luscious greens a whisker away that drives them to it. Like with horses, make sure they have readily available hay too. They don't hardly do it as we go into Autumn though, must be to do with hormones too as come Spring, they're back at it.
 

merlinsquest

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I thought it was ferrets that had to be mated or spayed..... I have never heard of 'having' to have a female rabbit spayed.... but I stand to be corrected on that one....

She is burrowing because she is a rabbit
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Faro

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Rabbits will dig - both bucks and does. It's natural for them - partly home (burrow) building, partly exercise and partly to keep their claws down (although a domestic rabbit will still need to have it's claws clipped regularly).

How long ago did you rescue these rabbits? The gestation period for a rabbit is 30 days, so if you have had them for a shorter time than this - or if the buck has been with them during the last 30 days, then your doe(s) may well be pregnant. When she is ready to give birth, the doe will start nest building for up to about 4 days before the birth (although some will leave it right to the last minute - literally - to build their nest). The doe will pluck fur from her chest and flanks, she will also carry bedding round in her mouth - making it look as if she has a moustache made of hay.

However, it is quite frequent for does to have phantom pregnancies also. This occurs approximately 17 days after a mating. So if you know the day your doe has been with the buck - and the nest building and plucking starts 17 days afterwards, you can pretty much guarantee the doe is not pregnant.

I can say this from a lifetime's experience with rabbits - I used to show them regularly and succesfully for over 20 years and was a very well known judge (unfortunately, with 5 horses as well, my commitments became too much and something had to go, so I stopped breeding rabbits several years ago now).

Good luck with your bunnies.

Oh and by the way, I don't know if you already know, but the rabbit is your picture is a Seal Point Dwarf or Mini Lop. (Can't tell if it's Dwarf or Minifrom the picture because the only difference is in the size and weight). Seal Point is the name for the actual colour - not the breed - same colour as a seal point Siamese cat.
 

Swift08

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My old female dug all the time she was out (was a house rabbit). She had the whole of our small front garden to run about in that was fenced. We ended up using tent pegs to secure the mesh and it worked fine. She unfortunatley died after 2 months (aged a year) of having her because of cancer:( we wanted her spayed but the vet said there was no need because she was not with a male. She was a rescue rabbit too and hated being handled, it took alot of patience to get her to be stroked.
I now have 2 male french lop bunnies that don't dig but they can jump the 3ft garden fence.
 

wench

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Female rabbits dig burrows, as thats what they do in the wild when the are going to have a litter. (thats not to say yours is pregnant.)
 

Jericho

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I think faros answer is pretty spot on - I have had up to 20 rabbits at one point after acquiring 2 pregnant females (unbeknown to me) and then a vet sexing them wrongly them resulting in more. All the mummies pulled chest fur to make nests when they were due but some still do it now even though definitely not pregnant - I think its just a home making thing! Digging is natural for rabbits - the only way I have stopped them digging huge burrows in my paddock is by completely covering their 10 ft by 15ft run in wire and then put sand and turf over the top of the wire to protect torn claws and then putting big heaps of soil and boxes to dig in. Seems to keep them happy...You need to spay females as they inevitably get ovarian cancer which cuts short their life. Good luck - rabbits are lovely pets if handled lots and they are very intelligent but left unhandled they quickly revert to their wild ways!
 
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