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Saturday, May 1, 2010

I don't own a Standard of Perfection

I feel funny just writing that title, but it's true- I do not now, nor have I ever, owned a Standard of Perfection.

It made a few friends go "Whaaa? Really?" when I casually mentioned it. I never felt like it was something I really needed. I can look up things like the minimum and maximum weight on my breeds via the internet or the Rabbit Forum.

I'm a much more hands on learner. When I got my woolies, I knew the "look" I admired, so that's what I bought. It's also what I breed for. Short, cobby bodies, short ears, big heads- It's just what I like. I knew they were supposed to be *similar* to Netherlands in certain aspects, and I felt like I had a pretty good grasp of how to generally judge Nethies.

I showed my starter woolies and listened to the judges when they placed all the rabbits in the class. I've felt a few animals from other exhibitors and asked for clarification when I didn't understand something. I also got another exhibitor to show me wool texture and what I should be looking for. I think that was the hardest part for me- figuring out what the correct "feel" of the wool should be and then applying it to my own animals. I don't feel like that is something easily learned, especially for me, by reading words on a page.

I'm not saying don't get a SOP or don't use it. Some folks have called it their "Bunny Bible" and some day I'll probably get one. But- I thought I had read enough to know what I was looking for in hollands- and I found out early on that I was wrong. What helped me to learn how to pick a good animal from a bad animal was those early "learning sessions" with experienced breeders.

-Kristen
Keep's Rabbitry

2 comments:

ThreeLittleLadiesRabbitry said...

WOW! I am shocked! Ok so here's the deal. There are too many stereotypes out there for rabbits. One of them being that jersey woolies or suppose to be like netherland dwarfs. There are suppose to be many differences between the two. In fact I wrote about it a couple of months ago on our blog.

The way they are often judged though would support the netherland dwarf/jersey wooly comparison.

Anyway, I actually checked the calendar when you said you didnt own a standard. I thought maybe it was April 1. LOL!

We know what we're getting you for Christmas!

Rob
Three Little Ladies Rabbitry

Keep said...

LOL I completely agree, I hear a lot that "Jersey Woolies are just Netherlands with wool" and that's not true at all. However, in the same way I knew how to check width and HQ on other dwarf breeds, I knew how to check it on Woolies. I could tell how the ears balanced the head width through ND experience and by knowing what an ND head looked like, it helped me see and understand the difference to the shape in a JW :). Small things, but it helped more than experience in something like Dutch would have! :D

Hehehe if I get a SOP in the mail from a "Secret Santa" I'll know who sent it :P.