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Thursday, November 22, 2012

Handling and General Care

Handling and General Care

Rabbits can be messy, so you’ll need to clean your pet’s cage once or twice weekly. Put your rabbit in a safe room or alternate cage as you sweep out the cage and scrub the floor with warm, soapy water.
Pick up your rabbit by supporting his forequarters with one hand and his hindquarters with the other—failure to do so can result in spinal injuries to the rabbit. Never pick up a rabbit by his ears; this can cause very serious injury.
Brush your rabbit regularly with a soft brush to remove excess hair and keep his coat in good condition. Brush from the back of the head down to the tail. Ask your veterinarian how to clip your pet’s nails. 

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Rs's Noka and RS's Godiva

Like other domestic rabbits, dwarf rabbits have a sensitive digestive system that is less hardy than their wild rabbit cousins. Leafy vegetables such as lettuces, cabbages, and greens (collard greens, mustard greens, beet greens, spinach, and kale) are crucial. Young rabbits, up until about eight weeks of age, should not be given vegetables due to the lack of development in their digestive system. Adults can be fed safe veggies daily, and should be given four heaping cups of varied vegetables (three or more) per five pounds of rabbit. In addition, sudden changes to a dwarf rabbit's diet can cause digestive problems, but it generally only lasts a few days and usually causes no real harm/lasting damage.
A very important aspect of rabbit care is proper diet. Many owners unintentionally fail at this point and that often spells disaster for their pet. Netherland Dwarfs have a digestive system even more sensitive than most breeds. The best diet consists of fresh, good quality rabbit pellets fed in limited amounts. It is crucial that the pellets be fresh and stored for no longer than eight weeks, do not use pellets which are moldy or have been contaminated. As pellets age they lose important nutrients, and a rabbit’s system will become susceptible to disease. The owner should also check the label for the percentages of protein, fiber, and fat. The National Research Council lists minimum rabbit nutrient requirements for a maintenance diet as 14% crude fiber, 2% fat, and 12% protein. It is best to feed a pellet that is higher in fiber (18-20%) and lower in protein (14-15%) and fat (2-3%) to a pet rabbit. Once you find a good brand, stick with it; frequent changes in diet can cause digestive problems. If you need to change brands, be sure to mix the new feed in with the old and increase the amount of new to old over a week's time so the rabbit can adjust.
Netherland Dwarfs generally don't require much feed. A small handful each day is usually enough, but it is important to adjust for each individual to avoid malnourishment/obesity. It is also important not to overfeed a Netherland Dwarf. Hay, however, can be given in unlimited amounts. A traditional ramekin dish full of complementary food and free access to water is always required.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Chocolate Program (chocolate and Chocolate Carrier)





Chocolate and Chocolate Carrier

Chromosomes and Genes
Chromosomes are strings of DNA. They act as blueprints or programs by which an organism builds itself. A chromosome is made up of individual points (or loci) called genes. An individual gene determines either the appearance or function of a body part. This gene may act alone or, usually, in concert with other genes to determine a particular appearance or function.
A chromosome string is linked together with one other chromosome string of the same type having the same gene locations. Thus, chromosomes and the genes on them occur in pairs in most of the cells of the body. There are 22 different chromosome pairs existing in each cell of the rabbit except the sex cells and red blood cells. Each chromosome pair controls different functions. For instance, the X and Y chromosomes determine sexual characteristics.
The same location on each chromosome of the pair controls the same characteristic. There are thus two genes involved - one on each chromosome at the same location. A particular gene location may allow only one type of gene to be present there; whereas, another location may allow different types of genes to occupy it. Those locations that allow only one type of gene on both chromosomes do so because any other type would cause either deleterious or fatal effects. An example of this would be the genes that control the shape of the teeth. If any other than the expected gene type is present at this location, the teeth would not grow in right, which could cause starvation.
Some locations allow different types of genes to stay there, causing different expressions of the same characteristic without deleterious effects. For instance, a hair color gene location may allow 2 genes of different types to occupy that location. One type of gene may be the gene that produces black hair, the other brown. Each chromosome may house either the black or the brown gene.
Some of the genes match their counterparts on the other chromosome exactly and some do not. When two genes match, such as, two black genes, this is called a homozygous pairing (homo- meaning the same). When the genes are not the same, such as one black and one brown gene, this is called heterozygous pairing (hetero- meaning different). Another name for heterozygous is hybrid. You've heard this term used in such common language as hybrid corn or hybrid tomatoes. These vegetables have one type of gene on one of the chromosomes, and a different gene on its companion chromosome.
When we speak of a gene location, we're really talking about two points - one on chromosome A and one on its companion chromosome B. Since there are two chromosomes involved, there are two genes involved - one from each chromosome. The points on each chromosome match up perfectly with the points on its companion chromosome. Thus, a location is made up of two genes.

Dominant and Recessive Genes
When two different genes occupy the same location, one of the genes expresses itself in the characteristic and the other either doesn't or does so to a lesser extent, modifying the effects of the other gene. When one gene expresses itself more than the other, it is called the dominant gene. The other gene is called the recessive gene. When the dominant gene expresses itself completely, to the exclusion of the recessive gene, this is calledcomplete dominance. Most dominant genes express themselves completely. When the recessive gene modifies the expression of the dominant gene in some way, the relationship of the dominant gene to the recesive gene is called incomplete dominance.
When a buck produces sperm or a doe produces eggs (both of these cell types are called gametes), the chromosome pairs in the cells that create these gametes divide, putting one chromosome of each type into the gamete. When the doe's egg is fertilized by the buck's sperm, the chromosome from the sperm unites with the same chromosome type in the egg and the chromosome pairing is once again restored. Whatever genes that came from the buck are now matched up with the genes of the doe. The expression of these genes in the resulting offspring depends on their dominance and how the other genes relate to each other.

The Mathematics of Genetics
Genetic determination is based on the law of probability. Without getting into the complicated aspects of gene mapping distance and linkage, I will present a simple concept of how you can figure what your offspring will look like.
It is common to represent a dominant gene by a capital letter and its recessive counterpart(s) as uncapitalized. Let's take the black/brown color location. This location is called B. The black gene, which is completely dominant, is represented as 'B'. The only known recessive gene that can occupy this location is brown, represented as 'b'. Since a location has two genes, there are 4 possibilities at this location: BB, bb, Bb, bB. Since black is completely dominant, if you have a rabbit that has at least one B at this location, the rabbit will have black in its fur. Thus, rabbits having the combination of genes: BB, Bb, or bB will have black in its fur. Rabbits having the combination of bb will have brown.
Note that it usually requires both recessive genes (bb) at a location for that set of genes to express itself. When the dominant gene is not completely dominant, the recessive gene will modify the expression of the dominant gene in some way. As far as the black/brown location, the black gene is completely dominant and will always express itself, if present, to the exclusion of the brown gene.
There are other genes that work with the B gene to determine that actual color of the rabbit. We will assume in this discussion that the other genes are set up to produce a solid black or a solid brown rabbit.
Let's take a black rabbit and mate it with another black rabbit. What are the possible offspring? We know that a black rabbit has at least one B gene. If we don't know for sure the other gene is B or b, we can represent that other gene as '_' (unknown). We can thus represent both genes in the black rabbit as: B_.
When it comes to dominant genes, we usually cannot know for absolute certainty that the other gene of the pair is also the same dominant gene. The exception to this is when the recessive gene acts with the dominant gene to produce a certain known characteristic, such as English spotting.
Getting back to our example, we have one black rabbit whose black/brown gene location is represented as B_. Let's assume the other black rabbit we are mating it to is also B_. Breeding the rabbits [B_ x B_], we combine the left gene of #1 with the left gene of #2 , giving BB - a black rabbit. Then we combine the left gene of #1 with the right gene of #2, giving B_ - another black rabbit. Then we combine the right gene of #1 with the left gene of #2, giving _B - another black rabbit. Then we combine the right gene of #1 with the right gene of #2, giving _ _ -unknown. We thus have:
B_ x B_ = (BB, B_, _B, _ _)
Let's fill in the blanks. If one of the rabbits had both black genes (BB) all of the litter would be black, without exception, even if the other rabbit had one brown gene. It wouldn't matter how many times you bred these two rabbits together, you would always have black offspring.
BB x B_ = (BB, B_, BB, B_)Remember, if at least one black gene is present, the rabbit will be black.
Only if both rabbits had one brown gene would a brown rabbit (bb) be produced. It may take two or more breedings to see a brown rabbit because the probability is only 25%.
Bb x Bb = (BB, Bb, bB, bb)
How can we test to see if one of the black rabbits has a brown gene in it? Simply mate the black rabbit with a brown rabbit. If you get any offspring that are brown, you know for a fact that the black rabbit has a brown gene in it. The probability is that you should get about 50% brown offspring. Here is the formula:
B_ x bb = (Bb, Bb, _b, _b)
Filling the blanks, if the unknown gene is B, all of the litter will be black. If the unknown gene is b, about half should be brown. Since we are talking about probability here, the litter could still be all black or could be all brown. If you get an all black litter, you may still have to breed one or more times to see if at least one brown rabbit is produced. If a brown rabbit is produced, you know for a certainty that the black rabbit has one black gene and one brown gene. If you get all black rabbits from matings all the time, it is probable, but not certain, that the black rabbit has both of its genes black.
In summary, to test for the presence of a recessive gene when only the dominant is showing, mate it with a rabbit that shows the recessive gene. If at least one of the offspring shows that recessive gene, you know positively that the rabbit you were testing has the recessive gene along with the dominant gene. If you do not get any offspring showing the recessive trait after several litters, the odds are that the rabbit in question does not have the recessive gene (but you can never know with absolute certainty). Remember that about half of the offspring should show the recessive trait. But if no rabbits in the litter expresses the recessive gene, we're still talking probabilities here. The failure of the recessive gene showing up in all of the litters does not prove the tested rabbit does not have the recessive gene, just that the probability of its having it is low. But if any rabbits in the litter show the recessive gene, it is proof positive that the tested rabbit has the recessive gene along with the dominant.

Hair Color
Hair color in rabbits is controlled by genes at several locations on the chromosomes. These genes act in conjunction with each other to produce quite a variety of different colors and patterns. Hair texture and length is controlled at other locations.
In this section, I intend to touch on only some of the basic color genes and their combinations. For a larger list and a thorough discussion, refer to the book, The ABC's of Rabbit Coat Colors, mentioned before.
The basic color genes in the rabbit are A through E, En, Du, Si, V, and W. Other genes act as color modifiers controlling the intensity of certain colors or patterns. They include the rufus modifiers, the plus/minus (blanket/spot) modifiers, and the color intensifiers. These modifiers are not single genes, but multiple ones that pool their effects.
A rabbit has two possible pigments that can be expressed in its hair - dark brown and yellow. The absence of both pigments results in white fur. All of the colors possible in rabbit fur are simply combinations of these pigments or lack thereof. The expression can appear on the same or different hairs, in certain patterns, and in different intensities.
In general, rabbits that have long hair, such as Angoras, have diluted color expression. Rabbits that have short hair, such as Rex, have more intense color expression. This is because, given the same genetic background, the number of pigment granules in the hair is the same. In long hair the pigment granules are spread further apart from each other, giving a pastel color. In short hair, the pigment granules are packed more closely together, making a more intense color.
Rabbits in the wild have a brownish fur color called agouti. Looking closely at this fur, you can see that it is made up of 3 to 5 bands of color. The hair closest to its skin is gray. This is followed by yellow, followed by black on the tips of the fur. These rabbits also have white bellies. This agouti pattern is found in some domestic rabbits today. They call this color chestnut. There are several variations of this agouti pattern in domestic rabbits. These variations are caused by the other genes and modifiers working together.
We can classify the color genes in two groups. First, the color pattern genes. These genes determine which pattern will be expressed: agouti, tan, or no pattern. All of the other genes are the color genes. These genes determine the placement and intensity of the color pigments on the hair.
The following table represents a list of the known genes, how they affect hair color, and some examples of rabbits having these genes. These genes are listed in the order of dominance within each group. Taking all of the genes together, there are thousands of color patterns possible. The American Rabbit Breeders Association has limited the number of color patterns it will accept for each breed in their Standard of Perfection..
Rabbit Hair Color Genetics
AAgouti pattern of banded hairHas tan, fawn, or white at eye circles, triangle at nape of neck, feet, legs, and inside of ears. Has white belly.Chestnut,
and Chinchilla
Netherland Dwarfs
atTan patternSolid color instead of banded hair. Has tan, fawn, or white at eye circles, triangle at nape of neck, feet, legs, inside of ears, and belly.Silver Marten,
Otter Rex
aSelf-Color (non-agouti)The hair lacks the banding, there is generally one color throughout.New Zealand Black,
American Blue,
Chocolate Havana
BBlackIn agouti (A_), produces the black band.
In self (solids) (aa), produces solid black color.
With A_: Chestnut and Chinchilla Netherland Dwarfs
With at_: Black Silver Marten
With aa: New Zealand Black
bBrown (Chocolate)In agouti (A_), produces a brown band instead of black.
In self (solids) (aa), produces solid chocolate color.
With A_: Chocolate Chestnut Netherland Dwarf.
With at_: Chocolate Silver Marten.
With aa: Chocolate Netherland Dwarf.
CFull color developmentAllows all 4 dark and all 3 yellow pigments to be present. Completely dominant.New Zealand Black
cchdDark ChinchillaAllows all 4 dark and only 1 of the 3 yellow pigments to be present. Area becomes white or pearl. Completely dominant over the following c genes.Chinchilla
cchlLight Chinchilla (Shading)Allows 2 of the 4 dark and none of the 3 yellow pigments to be present. This lightens the color to sepia brown. Causes shading effects. Incompletely dominant over the following c genes. Shading is fine-tuned with the color intensifier genes.Sable and smoke pearl Netherland Dwarfs
chHimalayanCauses dark extremities (points) which include the ears, nose, feet, and tail. Produces red eyes with other ch or c. Incompletely dominant over c.Californian, Seal Point.
cAlbinoBlocks the expression of all other color genes, producing a white rabbit with red eyes.New Zealand White
Ruby-Eyed White (rew)
DDense coat colorProduces the full color shade. Causes the eye to be brown.New Zealand Black
dDiluted coat colorChanges black to blue, chocolate to lilac, chestnut to opal, orange to fawn. Causes eye to be gray-blue.American Blue
EsSteelWith agouti, covers the middle band with dark pigment. Darkens the agouti type landmarks: eye circles, triangle at nape of neck, feet, legs, and inside of ears. Leaves white guard hairs (ticking).Black, Chestnut, and Chinchilla Steel
ENormal Extension of dark pigmentWorking with the C series genes, allows the complete expression of the dark brown pigment.New Zealand Black
ejJapanese brindlingWorks with Agouti gene to cause the black and yellow colors to be arranged in areas instead of individual hairs in a mosaic pattern.Rhinelander (with the Enen genes),
eNon-extension of the dark pigmentWorking with the C gene series and the rufus modifiers, this gene removes all or most of the dark pigment, leaving yellow, orange or white.New Zealand Red,
Sable Point Dwarf,
Frosted Pearl Dwarf
EnEnglish SpottingProduces spots (broken patterns). Enen is normal spotting. EnEn causes spotting only in the head. enen causes no spotting. Works with the plus/minus modifiers to produce more or less spotting. Can also work with Du and V genes.English Spot,
Broken Rex
enSelf-ColoredCauses normal coloring without spotting.New Zealand Red
DuAbsence of Dutch PatternDuDu causes no dutch patterns. Dudu causes partial white/colored patterns. dudu causes white belted dutch pattern. Works with the plus/minus modifiers to produce more or less color pattern. Can also work with the En and V genes.DuDu: Solid color rabbits
Dudu: Hotot (with EnEn and a lot of minus modifiers)
duWhite Belt Dutch PatternSee Du for descriptionDutch
VVienna WhiteVV: Normal coat color.
Vv: Dutch type markings on colored coat and colored spots on white coat.
The V gene can work with the plus/minus modifiers and the Du and En genes.
vv: Causes no color to express itselt and produces an all white rabbit with blue eyes.
VV: Almost all rabbits,
Vv: no known breeds,
vv: Blue-Eyed White
vVienna WhiteSee V for description.Blue Eyed White (bew)
WNormal Width of the middle yellow or white agouti bandNormal coloringChinchilla
wDoubles Width of the middle yellow or white agouti bandColors the agouti pattern areas: eye circles, triangle at nape of neck, feet, legs, inside of ears, and belly.New Zealand Red
SiNormal ColorSi_: has no effect on colorNew Zealand Black
siSilvered ColorProduces silver white hairs and silver tipped hairs intermingled with regular hair throughout the coat.Silver,
Silver Fox

Genetic Samples
Here are some samples of how the genes work together to produce certain varieties. Keep in mind that the modifier genes must be taken into account to produce the particular shades or patterns of colors you are looking for.
Ruby-Eyed White____cc______
Blue-Eyed White____________vv
Chestnut AgoutiA_B_C_D_E_W_
Lilac Pointaabbcchl_ddeeW_color-mod
Blue TortoiseshellaaB_C_ddeeW_
Black Tanat_B_C_D_E_wwrufus-mod
Chocolate Silver Martenat_bbcchd_D_E_W_
Spotted - White/Black/GoldA_B_C_D_ej_Enen
Steel Siamese SableaaB_cchl_D_EsEW_silver ticking

This concludes our discussion on Rabbit Genetics. The surface has only been scratched as far as the depth by which we could delve into the matter of genetics. If you want to experiment in improving your herd or to get just the right color you want, I refer you once again to The ABC's of Rabbit Coat Colors by Glenna Huffmon. Another good source of information is the specialty club for the particular breed you are interested in

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Blue Otter Buck

Fiber is vital to the normal function of the digestive system in rabbits. Fresh grass hay and vegetables should make up the bulk of the diet for house rabbits. Feeding a diet consisting mainly of pellets may result in obesity and increase the likelihood of digestive problems. While there is some fiber in pellets, it is finely ground and does not appear to stimulate intestinal function as well as fiber found in grass hays. Roughage also aids in the prevention of hair balls. The addition of some pellets does add some balance to the diet, however.
Anything other than hay, vegetables, and pellets is considered a treat and should be feed in strict moderation. The digestive system of a rabbit is very susceptible to serious upsets if the diet is inappropriate. The amount of pellets should be restricted, especially in overweight rabbits, but any reduction in pellets should be made up with a variety of fresh vegetables and unlimited access to hay.
Hay (grass hays such as timothy or oat hay) should be available at all times. Some rabbits may not take much hay at first. Adding fresh hay a couple of times a day may help, and as the amount of pellets is reduced the rabbit will likely become hungry enough to eat the hay. The House Rabbit Society recommends starting baby bunnies on alfalfa hay and introducing grass hays by 6-7 months, gradually decreasing the alfalfa until the rabbit is solely on grass hays by 1 year. Alfalfa hay is higher in calcium and protein and lower fiber than the grass hays, although many owners find their rabbits prefer alfalfa hays. If your adult rabbit is used to alfalfa hay, try mixing alfalfa with a grass hay to start and gradually reduce the amount of alfalfa.
Vegetable should make up a large portion of the diet. Depending on the size of the rabbit, 2-4 cups of fresh veggies should be given per day. A variety must be fed daily to ensure a balanced diet. If a rabbit is used to eating mainly pellets, the change must be made gradually to allow the rabbit's digestive system time to adjust. Only add one new vegetable to the diet at a time so if the rabbit has diarrhea or other problems it will be possible to tell which vegetable is the culprit. Suggested vegetable include carrots, carrot tops, parsley, broccoli, collard greens, mustard greens, dandelion greens, turnip greens, endive, romaine lettuce, kale and spinach. However, kale, spinach and mustard greens are high in oxalates so their feeding should be limited to 3 meals per week. Beans, cauliflower, cabbage, and potatoes may cause problems and should be avoided. Iceberg lettuce has almost no nutritional value so should be avoided. Rhubarb should also be avoided (toxicity). Wash vegetables well, and only feed dandelions that are known to be pesticide free (try a health food store for organically grown dandelion greens).
Vegetables should be introduced to bunnies around 12 weeks of age, in small quantities and one at a time. As more vegetable are added watch for diarrhea and discontinue the most recently added vegetable if this occurs. Over time, the amount of vegetables fed is increased, and the amount of pellets decreased, so that by 1 year of age the adult feeding recommendations are followed.
Pellets are basically designed for commercial rabbit production, and are quite high in calories. As a result, house rabbits fed unlimited pellets may end up with obesity and related health problems, as well as an excess of other nutrients. Pellets do have a place in rabbit nutrition, as they are rich and balanced in nutrients. However, experts recommend restricting the amoung of pellets fed, and compensating with fresh vegetables (see below) and grass hays.
Choose a fresh, good quality pellet. The House Rabbit Society recommends a minimum of 20-25% fiber, around 14% protein (with no animal protein), and less than 1% Calcium for most house rabbits (spayed/neutered). For adults, the amount should be carefully regulated, depending on the size (weight) of the rabbit. As a rule, give about 1/4 cup for rabbits 5-7 lb, 1/2 cup for 8-10 lb rabbits, and 3/4 cup for 11-15b lb rabbits. Baby rabbits can be fed pellets free choice (available at all times), decreasing to 1/2 cup per 6 lb. of body weight by around 6 months.
The House Rabbit Society recommends 1-2 tablespoons of fresh fruits be given daily as a treat. Treats sold in pet stores marketed for rabbits are generally unnecessary and in some cases could cause digestive problems due to their high carbohydrate or sugar content. Instead of food treats, consider offering twigs from apple or willow trees (pesticide-free only).

Friday, February 3, 2012

Rabbit Coat Colors

The number of coat colors found in rabbits is long and sometimes confusing. The following list covers the basic color descriptions or color groups found in rabbits.
Disclaimer: this list is meant to give a general idea of color variations, not to represent an exhaustive list or to accurately describe rabbit color standards as published by the American Rabbit Breeders Association for show or breeding purposes (see the ARBA site for detailed and official descriptions).
Agouti: bands of color occur on each hair - the colors of these bands vary depending on the type of agouti coloration. 
Black: dark black. 
Black otter: black body with lighter underside, hair may be orange tinted at the border of the black and lighter color. 
Blue: medium or slate blue. 
Blue otter: blue coat with fawn tipped guard hairs, fawn areas. 
Blue steel: blue with silver or tan "ticking" (see below) 
Blue tortoiseshell: blue and beige. 
Broken: white with any color patches or spots, with nose markings, colored ears, and eye circles. 
Brown-gray agouti: blue at base, then medium tan, charcoal, and tan at tip. 
Californian: white body with black on nose, ears, tail, feet. 
Castor: brown over top, slate blue undercoat, with orange or red in between. 
Chinchilla: slate or black blended with pearl, black tipped guard hairs. 
Cinnamon: rust or reddish-brown color. 
Chocolate: deep dark brown. 
Chocolate agouti: bands of tan and chocolate with a chestnut tip. 
Chocolate chinchilla: chocolate and pearl with chocolate tipped guard hairs. 
Chocolate steel: chocolate with tan or silver ticking. 
Chocolate tortoiseshell: creamy chocolate with fawn. 
Copper agouti: bands of red/orange and dark slate with red at tip, ticked with black tipped guard hairs. 
Cream: pinkish beige to almond. 
Fawn: straw color. 
Frosted pearl: pearl with black, blue, chocolate or lilac shading. 
Gray: three different colors of hair: black, black with tan tip, and black with tan band, and slate undercolor. 
Light gray: agouti with slate blue at base, off white in middle, and light gray at tip, with black tipped guard hairs. 
Lilac: pinkish pale gray 
Lilac chinchilla: lilac and pearl ticked with lilac tipped guard hairs. 
Lilac steel: lilac with tan or silver ticking. 
Lilac tortoiseshell: lilac and beige. 
Opal agouti: slate blue at base of hair, then gold, then blue tip. 
Orange: light to bright orange. 
Pearl: light creamy gray. 
Pointed white: white with black, blue, chocolate or lilac colored nose, ears, feet, tail (like a Himalayan coloring). 
Red: rich brown red color. 
Sable: dark grayish brown. 
Sable marten: siamese sable coloring with silver tipped guard hairs. 
Sable point: cream body and sable on nose, ears, feet and tail. 
Sandy: reddish tan. 
Seal: dark (almost black) sable. 
Self group: solid color in black, blue, lilac, blue eyed white, and ruby eyed white. 
Shaded group: color transitions from dark to light (e.g. frosted pearl, sable, sable point, siamese sable, seal, tortoise). 
Silver or silver fox: silver with white or white tipped hairs. 
Silver Marten: black, blue, chocolate or lilac with silver white markings and silver tipped guard hairs. 
Tan Pattern: marks (not necessarily tan) on nostril, eye circles, jowls, inside ears, belly, inside led, underside of tail. Groups included marten and otter colorations. 
Ticking: solid or tipped guard hairs different than the main coat color interspersed throughout the coat. 
Tortoise: orange with black, blue, chocolate or lilac. 
Tortoiseshell: orange or dark fawn and black. 
Tri-colored: white with any of black and orange, lavender blue and fawn, chocolate and orange, gray and fawn.

Friday, January 20, 2012



Molting is when rabbits lose their coat and grow in a new one.  A molt can last from 2-6 weeks or more.  It varies greatly from rabbit to rabbit and from breed to breed.  During this time, they can get a hair ball that can plug them up.  Giving hay daily will help this, but when one gets into trouble, we give them a little bit of dried papaya or fresh banana or even a little fresh pineapple.  In the spring and summer time, a dandelion leaf or two is a special treat for them that they seem to really like.  All of the above seem to help get their system going again.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Anggora Rabbit

  1. Although rabbits build nests, they are not chickens and, after initial preparation, will not sit on their nests. They also do not stay on or by the nests after the babies are born. This would attract the attention of predators. The babies burrow to the bottom of the nest where they remain hidden until Mamma Rabbit wakes them up at mealtime.
  2. Only rarely does a mother rabbit nurse her young right after giving birth. Most often the first nursing will occur the night after the kindling. The rabbit's rich milk sustains the babies for 24 hours at a time. The preferred mealtime is between mid night and 5:00 a.m.
  3. A mother rabbit does not lie down in the nest, as a cat would do, but stands over the babies to nurse them. She does, however, clean them and lick their bellies and bottoms to stimulate elimination in much the same way as a cat.
  4. If you want definite proof that the babies are being cared for, check them early each morning. They should be warm and round-bellied. The best way to know for sure is to weigh them on a small postage scale or kitchen scale. Write down a description and the weight. If they're gaining weight (1/4 oz. or so), they're being fed.
  5. You can handle the babies even if the mother doesn't know you. Domestic rabbits are not that concerned over human smells.
  6. Rabbits are not prone to cannibalism, as many people think. Cannibalism is an occasional result of a stillborn litter, and this is nature's way of cleaning up the "mistake." The activity and noisy squeaking of healthy babies trigger the "maternal instincts."Only rarely does a mother rabbit truly abandon or ignore her babies. This may occur when a very Immature rabbit gives birth, In which case, she usually does not build a nest or make any preparations. Her milk production Is also delayed. Sometimes the babies can be hand fed for short time until the mother rabbit can take over the job. Again, their daily weight gain is the test of adequate nourishment.

  7. Generally a male rabbit is tolerant of young rabbits and, if neutered, can remain with his new family. The father will begin to nip and play roughly with the sons as they begin to reach puberty and start acting feisty. Then It's time for separation. A male rabbit must be neutered before being put back with the mother because she can conceive again immediately after giving birth. They should be kept separate for a minimum of two weeks after neutering.