I'm so nervous that things won't go well for my pregnant rabbit

by Maggie
(Valley City, ND, USA)

I have a planned to be (first time) pregnant doe. On day 25 (it is now day 26) she started carrying hay in her mouth (quite a bit). I weighed her a couple days ago, she has gone from 5.8 lb to 6.4 lb. I'm ready to put the nest box in on day 28, and to expect kits on day 31. I am still very nervous and anxious, that the kits will either die or I'll do something wrong. Any suggestions for my nervousness.

p.s. Thank you so much for all you do for rabbits and rabbit lovers. I will try to post a picture of the little kits. Again thank you!

***** Karen Sez *****
You're welcome! I love providing folks with all the information they need to be successful with breeding and raising rabbits. Sounds like you've been using this information wisely. Your rabbit has gained weight, you're watching the signs of pregnancy, and you're prepared for the birth.

After that, nothing I can do, eh? And nothing you can do either, except wait patiently. Being prepared and on time is your best gift to the doe. After this, her instincts will make it all happen. All will be well.

But we know that things sometimes don't go right.

In the off chance that things go horribly awry, say, the doe eats the babies or scatters the kits across the wire floor, it will help if you are willing to recognize the possibility that the doe got gypped on the maternal instincts. Rabbits are rabbits, not people, and if she doesn't know how to raise a litter to weaning, you can be sure that in the wild, Nature eliminates rabbits with faulty instincts. Sometimes the rabbit breeder has to do the same thing.

But, breeders usually give their first-time does 2 or even 3 chances to get it right. Even when the doe messes up once, she may still turn out to be a fine breeding animal in the future.

So, let happen what will happen. And then let what happens guide your next rabbit husbandry choices.

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Aug 27, 2013
Things going well for pregnant rabbit
by: Kristy

I understand your concerns, we just went through this with 2 maiden Holland Lops. We prepared for the worst, and we kind of got it. First doe had 3 dead kits, one a day over 3 days! Second doe had 2 dead kits, 1 in nest, 1 outside. We did find 1 kit warm and wiggly and alive down in the corner of the nest box and she is doing well! Mama is taking great care of it! So you just don't know what to expect.

I think with only 3 kits each, the babies were big and hard to deliver. Most seemed stretched, kind of long, so I think the mamas struggled. But we are following Karen's advice and trying again with the first doe with no kits. We are all learning together! Hope all went well for you!

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