Can my bunny possibly be pregnant?

by Bunny Lover

My four year old "accidental" lop/dwarf mix was with my friend's bunny last night. The bunny is a six week old male. They exhibited mating behavior, but the male was young so I thought mating would be impossible. But this morning I was petting my bunny this morning and accidentally squeezed one of her teats and milk came out. Does this mean my bunny is pregnant?

***** Karen Sez *****
You're right - a 6-week-old kit is just too young to be siring litters. I'm pretty sure you can put your mind at ease relative to a pregnancy.

But frankly, I'm not quite sure what the presence of milk from the teats means in a non-pregnant 4-year-old doe. Can you feel any hard lumps or unusual swellings in the mammary tissue around the teats? Was it milk or something else, like (shudder!) pus? Can you express milk from all the teats or just one of them?

It could be that your doe was experiencing some physiological changes due to a false pregnancy, which in a hormonally ready rabbit can be triggered by something as inoccuous as getting stroked along the back by you. I am not sure if those changes extend all the way to milk production.

I hope others with experience will share their understanding with us!

In the meantime, if you continue with concerns, you may wish to take your female to a rabbit-savvy vet for a check-up.

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Sep 23, 2015
can a six week old female get pregnant?
by: lana

Hi. I am a newish breeder and today something concerned me.

I have a wonderful doe who has four kits, six weeks old.

I put my buck (the kits father) back into the hutch with the whole family (mama gets worried without them there) this morning with the intent to breed the mother as she is in great condition and got the go ahead from the vet.

But the buck jumped straight onto the back of a baby doe and tried to breed her! I grabbed him off- no grunt and fall over. But feel very worried that maybe I have inadvertently killed this baby doe by letting her father get her pregnant.

Everywhere I have read states that females are possible to breed with from 12 weeks but should be held off til 6 months.

Clearly this buck hasn't done any reading! Do you think we are pretty safe or that I need to take her to a vet?

***** Karen Sez *****

Yeah, you're pretty safe. I've heard rumors of a kit or two of a small rabbit breed getting pregnant at around 10.5 - 11 weeks old. For most breeds around 12.5 - 14 weeks would be the absolutely youngest a kit could get pregnant. Nevertheless, most breeders are careful to get their kits separated by sex by 9-10 weeks of age. (They're pretty big by then, anyway. Time to give them more room.)

If you intend to house the doe and buck together, you might consider a couple new cages for the youngsters already - one for the females and one for the bucklings.

Enjoy your rabbits!

Dec 05, 2013
by: Anonymous

The doe is going thru a false pregnancy. I've known my rabbits (even when purposely bred) to build the most beautiful nests and display all the characteristics of being pregnant and then nada. I've even heard of human women producing milk to nurse a baby they adopted. It's mother nature at work. While 6 weeks may be too young for the male to breed, the female still goes thru the hormonal changes even though it's false.

***** Karen Sez *****
Yes, agreed. I've just never noticed the milk during those hormonal changes. But, now I'm sure gonna look for it!!

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