Sister does living together, both pregnant

by Jodi
(Pelham, MA USA)

These are the 2 who are most likely pregnant now

These are the 2 who are most likely pregnant now

These are the 2 who are most likely pregnant now
This is how bonded these girls are!
Their indoor housing, buck on the left & does on the right (wooden divider in between)

Well, we seem to have a surprise on our hands! Apparently while we were away all 3 of our rabbits, an Angora male & 2 mini-lop females, all got out together when the caretaker didn't latch their hutches properly :( We suspect both of the lops are pregnant. We're about day 25 now & they're showing all the signs.


Here's the question: The 2 females, sisters, are VERY bonded with each other. They're so inseparable that they sit with their ears flopped over each other and if we take one out without the other the one left behind gets agitated. We've been advised that allowing them to kindle in the same hutch might not be a good idea because one or both might become aggressive & kill the other one's babies but so far they are still as close as ever.

I'm afraid if we separate them for the birth they might become distraught. What do you think? And if we do separate them when is it safe to put them back together? Thanks!!


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

The answer very much depends upon the individual rabbits. The one who advised you about aggressive rabbits certainly has a point, and sometimes leaving two hormonal does together, even if sisters, ends disastrously.

But I've also heard many stories of tightly bonded does who actually kindle their kits in the same box and then share maternal duties such as nursing the kits.

It is of course impossible for me to know how things will turn out with your rabbits. Nevertheless, given what you say, I'd be very tempted to leave them together, provide 2 nest boxes, and supervise frequently and if necessary, surreptitiously.

Have at the ready a second cage if it should turn out to be needed. I suspect all will be well....

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