It's important when you are getting a new rabbit to check it over for signs of good health before taking that rabbit home. It's doesn't help the hidden illnesses that only become symptomatic after the rabbit is in it's new home, but it helps to cut out some of the obvious.
Are the eyes bright and clear? No weeping, odd spots, tearing, debris in the corner, no red areas, excessive white showing?
No mites or other signs of illness. No unexplained rips or tears or frostbite damage. Furred decently? Tattooed if necessary?
Good colour? Developing properly? Not butting, no Malocclusion, no underbite. Nothing that seems "off" to you. Just regular ordinary rabbit teeth. While here check that nose out carefully. No hidden signs of snot at all? Clean, no damage, looks like a good normal nose?
No matting on those front paws that indicated sneezing/snot issues. Not broken? Check those nails that they are the correct colour and not missing. (important for breeding/show homes, not so important for pet homes).
Well furred, no sores, all toes/nails etc.
Make sure your boy is a boy and your girl is a girl. CHECK. If you don't, you've no cause to complain. Know what to look for. Boys look like a pointy burrito and depending on age will have testes and a penis emerge. Girls will have two thin red lines on either side of the vent. They tend to look like a taco (so to speak).
IF I am not sure on a bunnies gender I will say so, some bunnies mature late and simply are hard to sex. Most of the time I am right on my genders, but sometimes I am wrong. Judges get it wrong sometimes as well. :)
One of the things I do with my bunnies is I handle them to help them transition well to their new homes. :) Most of my bunnies go into pet homes, a few into breeder or show homes, the occasional ones go into therapy or sport homes. It's all good. Everyone wants bunnies they can handle.
Handling babies in the box. I take them out twice a day and give them a basic check. Bellies full, hair growing, looking healthy. Day three I give them a good going over as I often find I can tell which one (if any) that I want to keep for myself.
Starting around day nine I start handling them more. Switching them from hand to hand, holding them in various position, light pets, etc. I play with feet a bit, but not over much. Just enough they know I'm there are are ALERT to me handling them. At this stage I watch for babies that startle easily and give them MORE handling, making note that I won't be holding them back and will aim for teen/adult homes for those kits. At this stage I watch how their eyes are doing as well, start checking teeth etc.
Week three and four I start being even more deliberate in my handling. My aim is to produce a bunny that learns the word STOP and will lie still for me when held on it's back (this helps new owner do things like nail trims). So I will get bunny used to being flipped. Will he stay there? Does she need to be encouraged?
Encouragement often takes the form of EASY, STOP and the forever popular head stroke. Giving a firmly gentle stroke down the forehead towards the ears settles most rabbits quite quickly.
I will get bunny used to getting teeth checked. And it's head being held.
I will play with their feet to get them used to feet being touched for nail trims (It's one of my personal pet peeves when I buy a rabbit and trimming nail becomes this major adventure down a trail I don't want to be on).
I always finish a session with a GOOD bunny and solid pet down it's back a few times. This settles bunny nicely and this would also be the time when I offer a treat of a small piece of apple, a dandelion leaf etc.
These two boys went off to their new homes tonight. Good young kits. Should provide some interesting genetics for their new owners. :)
So the pet store was wondering what bunnies I had available, so I told them, and they asked me to bring in five bunnies.
These are the bunnies they asked for:
off to a home in Birr. This quiet lass of Triscuit and Corbin. To be the pet of an 11 year old.
These two girls off to be the pet of a 4 and 7 year old. The broken off triscuit and corbin, the polish off Vena x Ranger.
This fellow was supposed to go to one home, but they were a "I'm not home" person so I was disappointed by that, but then another person emailed about him so he found his own digs afterall. :)
I have been breeding rabbits for a quite a few years. I thoroughly enjoy them as animals and think they make great pets. I also like to take some of them to rabbit shows to see how they measure up to the standards.
For the BEST rabbit forum I've ever found. Go to Rabbittalk.com. Good for the pet rabbit owner as well as the breeder for meat or show.