Does Rabbit Breeding Age Matter?
When waiting to breed a virgin doe does age matter? So, would a virgin 9 month old have a better or worse chance than a 7 month old? Thanks I love your site.
Thanks for the kind words!
The main consideration when breeding rabbits is that the doe be mature. This is to give the rabbit's body a chance to be fully ready to carry babies to term, and her instincts a chance to fully kick in (so she'll know what to do, like build her nest and kindle the litter IN the nest).
The size of the rabbit breed will play a role in when the rabbit reaches maturity. The average rabbit weighing 7 - 11 pounds will reach maturity at around 6 months. The giant breeds might not reach maturity until somewhere around 9 months or a little older, while the smaller breeds may do fine at 5 - 5 1/2 months.
Depending, then, on the size of the rabbits in question, a difference between 7 and 9 months is probably negligible.
Does will frequently 'tell' you when they're ready. Open the cage and touch her back. Does she flatten herself and lift her hiney? Yep, ready. If not, you can still flip her over - purple privates means probably ready. No? Put her in with a buck. If she cooperates with him, she was ready, heheh. No? Reintroduce her again to the buck in a couple days.
When in doubt, just give her a bit more time, but not too long. Does do best when bred before they turn 1 year old.