How to breed rabbits

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Mating rabbits should be easy, and it is, but there are some key tips that you should know before you try. Here we explore how to breed rabbits at home:

Breed the same breed

Never try to crossbreed rabbits, as this can lead to complications. Keep the same breeds together for the best results.

Find homes before you breed

Rabbit litters can be big, so you need to ensure that you have space for the little ones to grow and homes for them to go to when they are old enough. Finding homes for rabbits is often easy, but you should get a waiting list in line before you breed them.

Take the doe to the buck

It would be best if you never introduced a buck to the doe’s cage. Rabbits are very territorial and the fur will fly if you introduce a male to a female’s cage. Instead, introduce the female to the buck’s cage and things will be a lot calmer.

Observe

The buck will usually mate with the doe immediately. After a few sniffs around the back of the doe, the buck will mount before falling off with a grunt. The male may also act strangely after this, thumping the cage floor and basically showing off.

Let them at it

Two or three successful matings will increase your chances of success inbreeding, but you should keep an eye on them during this as rabbits can fight even during mating. Allowing two or three matings before you separate the rabbits will increase success rates and litter sizes too.

Remove the doe to her cage

Once the mating is complete, you can return the doe to her cage. Within eight to 10 hours of mating, the doe will ovulate and should then become pregnant. Your doe may then be aggressive for the next few days, so give her some space and leave her alone in her cage.

Try and try again

If the process of mating doesn’t work, then you simply need to try again. It will become quickly clear that your rabbit is pregnant because of clear behaviours displayed and nesting practices, but you should give the rabbit a couple of weeks between each mating to start displaying these.

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