by Michele Green
(Malvern AR )
We bought our New Zealands with the intentions on raising them for meat. I was told that they could not have kits until they were 8 to 10 months old. About 3 weeks ago when ever I would feed her she would bite me and I didn't know why. Well, my husband went out to feed her and he came back in and said I needed to do something with the babies in the rabbit cage, much to my surprise she had had 5 babies in the night. And she is only 6 months old. They are so cute that I don't know if I can raise them for meat. My grand kids just adore them. Our female's name is AnnaGrace and our male is Smoky.
So if someone tells you oh don't worry she can't have babies at 6 months I'm here to tell you they can.****Karen Sez****
Yep, you're right! They sure can have babies by 6 months. You didn't get that 8-10 month statement from this website, right?
The cuteness factor is a tough one, isn't it. Problem is...we're way too separated from our food sources, and the thought of death and blood is hard to deal with, when food comes so conveniently in packages from the fast food joint or the supermarket.
Homesteaders do it this way:
AnnaGrace and Smokey are understood to be forever-pets. Their babies are predestined to be meat. The kids know this up front. Nobody gets to name the meatrabbits and the kids know the offspring will soon have a date with a butcher.
Then, when the butcher transitions the rabbits from rabbit to meat, the homesteaders take the time to thank the animal as do the Native Americans. And/or they thank the Creator above for His provisions. It is somewhat comforting to the kids and grandkids to know that AnnaGrace and Smokey will always be pets, and won't ever become meat. (That's an agreement you must never renege on - never kill the pet rabbits.)