Entertainment Blog Directory

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Meaty Breed

Yep, it's finally going to happen!

Meat breeds are going to be coming to Keep's Rabbitry.

I'm planning on getting a trio of New Zealands or Californians (or a mix) and colony raising them for meat and fur.

I'll be giving more details and pictures of their set up as it unfolds. I've found a butcher and may have meat, pelts or parts for BARF diet dogs available in the future. It is my hope and my plan that very, very little of the animal will not be used for some purpose!

I am hoping to get their pen set up in the next few days, which will mean I have to rearrange my rabbitry a bit. We're going to be slightly crammed in, I have a feeling, but I think I know where to put the extras.

Keep's Rabbitry

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Pushing Through A Molt

I'm trying to throw my show rabbits into a molt.

Why you ask? Have I lost my mind you ask? Maybe. It's a gamble for sure.

I have several juniors and a few seniors that are showing signs of starting to molt a little. Not much, it's the kind of molt where you hold your breath and pray that they won't go full blown until the day after the show.

My luck doesn't run that way.

So, I've put these special show bunnies on the Purina Professional food. It's 18%, which I'm hoping, combined with the newest heat wave, will be enough to send them in to a molt and bring them back out of it before July 19th, the next show.

If I gambled and lose, then half my line up is going to be so open in coat they might as well be bald. However, if it works, I should have some VERY nice looking bunnies up there competing!

We'll see what happens, so far so good!

Keep's Rabbitry

Friday, June 27, 2008

Super Huge Baby Overload

Oh yes, I have a super huge baby overload right now! Mini Lops, Jersey Woolies, Holland lops, you name it, I've got it!!

What, you think I'm kidding? We had four more born today, with quite a few does due in the beginning of July!

Our kit count right now is 28 live and happy babies. We've lost around 10 due to mother neglect or failure to thrive. So we've had almost 40 babies born here recently! It looks like our bad luck has ended! Thank you so much Purina! I credit changing back to this feed.

Unfortunately, in some of the larger litters, like my 7 mini lops, I'll be petting out 2 soon, to bring the number I want to grow out a little longer down. So if you're interested in a pet mini lop, let me know! They are out of excellent lines, but pedigrees will not be available with them. :)

Also, keep an eye out for more senior animals being listed for sale! After all, I've got to make room for these babies somehow! I've been lucky, I've petted out two animals, sold a herd buck and presold two does, available after their litters. So I'm getting a fair number of holes emptied, but the babies keep coming on fast! NOT that I am complaining, I wouldn't dream of it! I wish I could hang on to everyone until 6 months.

In other baby news- our AKC Mini Dachshund female appears to be pregnant. Puppies should come around the first of August and will be AKC registerable! For a full payment, I will hold the pups until Convention, but more on that later, when the pups are actually born.

Ahh, I'm headed out to the rabbitry to check on the next round of mamas! :) Hope your nestboxes are as full as mine!

Keep's Rabbitry

Hypothermic Kits

Chilled kits. Kitcicles. Frozen kits.

We've got a lot of phrases to describe it. What is is though- is the suck. It's awful to go outside and find cold babies in the nextbox or on the wire. Sometimes you can bring them back, sometimes you can't.

When trying to revive a chilled kit, you can place them in a plastic baggy (roll the top down a bit, to make it more like a boat) and let it float upright in some warm water. TOO warm, you'll send the kits in to shock and they'll die anyway. Shoot for a lukewarm right at first.

You can also put them on your stomach (if you are a guy) or pop them in your bra (for the ladies and the gentlemen who have a woman's clothing fetish). The body heat you give off will help revive the kits. Another option is to hold them in your cupped hands (one on top of another).

If the kits are moving at all, you've got a pretty decent chance of survival. If they aren't moving, you can try the steps above, but it may already be too late.

I like to warm the kits up until it seems like they have a viable chance of generating their own body heat. I DO NOT like to put in a cold kit with a warm litter. To me, that's just increasing the chance that the cold kit will lower the body temperatures of the others. Once it has a fair number of heat, then perhaps it will be allowed in the nest with the others, but under CLOSER supervision- we're talking checks every 5 minutes or so on all the babies in the nest.

Some folks put nestbox heaters under their boxes- I've heard some people love them, some people say it just encourages the does to sit in the nest, causing soiled boxes and squished babies. Use them at your own risk!

Some breeders use heat lamps over cages with does. Remember, if you make it too hot, you'll end up with roasted babies :(. So again, be careful!

You can also bring in does to kindle and keep them inside a temperature controlled area until the kits are at least 2 weeks old. However, I don't like flip flopping extreme temperatures. By that I mean- bringing a doe in to our 73 degree house, then putting her and the babies back out in 30 degree weather. You can put them in another place like a basement where it stays a balmy 50 degrees or so, but I don't have a good place like that to put them.

My does just stay out in the rabbitry with plenty of hay and I hope for the best. I keep my bag of extra fur on hand to bulk up nests and I try to make sure I have multiple does due at the same time so I can foster off singletons.

Sometimes, no matter what you do, the kit(s) will die anyway. You just do the best you can and hope for the best.

Keep's Rabbitry

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Goodbye Mongo

Yesterday, my pet flemish giant, Mongo, was playing in his pen. The neighbor's husky got loose for the first time ever and my best guess is he saw this big guy and thought he'd found a new friend. :( Tim brought me outside and I found Mongo literally seconds before he passed away. I do believe it was a quick, accidental death.

This was our first dog attack and it could have been so much worse- the rabbitry was standing open because it's hot here and we wanted to make sure they got good air flow.

Our neighbor came over and apologized so many times for what had happened. She offered to pay for a replacement Mongo, acknowledging that money wouldn't make it better. To me though, it was the apology that mattered the most. I was so worried that she, like so many people, would have treated his death as insignificant. Nothing about Mongo was insignificant. Survivor of a dog attack at the home of his breeder in Pennsylvania, it's cruel irony that he should fall to a dog here.

Mongo has a place in the yard near our garden, overlooking the large field beyond our house. The sky was gorgeous last night, dressed in pinks and blues, the mountains dark against it's radiance. I think it's a spot he'd have approved of. We placed a temporary flower with him, to be replaced by a large living bush or plant, a memorial to him.

Goodbye Mongo. You have memorials in three states. I didn't get to know you as well as I would have liked, but know you were special to me, to Whitney and especially to Krys.

Keep's Rabbitry

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Jersey Wooley Buck for Sale -Sold

Forgive his pose- it's hot today and he was in a mood!

Hamilton's California Dreamin', a sable point, sr. Jersey wooley buck. He's going to be a year old in just a few weeks.

Dreamin' is out of Wooligans Montague and Caudhill's Vanessa. He's one of the only babies born on this coast out of Montague, who passed away. This guy is a GREAT breeder.

He chews himself, which gives you an idea why he looks the way he does. He's also molting that wool cap, about the only thing he and his neighbor can't chew off.

A nice small buck, he's my current shaded herd buck. Due to several up and coming bucks, as well as a large number of babies being born here out of him, I've decided to move him out.

He is DQ free and I do think he'd do really well on a show table, if you could get him to stop being a chewer.

Keep's Rabbitry

Dieting Rabbits

I've got four rabbits on a diet out in my rabbitry- and BOY are they mad at me!

Three does won't get pregnant, even though two of them are proven. A buck is turning into a 10 second quitter. If he doesn't catch his girl in 10 seconds, he's huffing and puffing and needs to settle down for a nice nap. Well no more.

Each have had their pellets cut out completely. Oh yes, completely. They are getting nothing but insane amounts of hay every day. For one of the does, I think this will be a very short term diet, she just needs to lose an ounce or two and get back into the baby making range.

For the other two does, this will be a two week exercise. Nothing but fresh water and hay.

I've also decided to add a little apple cider vinegar to the water in a few day's time- I didn't see much help with it in the past, but it can't hurt, so why not?

I've heard several success stories with this method. I'll definitely keep everyone posted!! One of the does really needs to be started now, or may never conceive. So keep your fingers crossed for me!

Keep's Rabbitry

Monday, June 23, 2008

Movin' Out Stock

This is something we talk about a lot on Rabbit Habbit- how do you let go of your stock? When has a doe or buck produced enough, how can you be sure you won't need them later on, etc?

Well- eek. Don't ask me! I'm the world's worst at letting stock go!

But then again, I do have to deal with it, so here is what I'm thinking.

Does: We're gonna try to move out the does at 2 1/2 years, assuming I've got a good replacement. If I don't, I may keep them slightly longer. If the doe doesn't make nice enough babies with my bucks after 2 different breedings, she's gone. Remember- because she doesn't work in your herd doesn't mean she won't work in someone else's!

Bucks: Ugh, my weakness! If I produce a buck better than Daddy and shows himself able to throw babies as nice, then the older buck is gone. If the buck becomes super ingrained in my lines, like Smooth Mover, they will also be moved out.

I managed to do this with Keep's Elm- his son, Keep's Forest, has proven himself on the show table and I knew early on that I liked Forest better- so I amazed myself by being able to move out Elm!

We need to STOP having "for-life-ers". Abby & Joe- BIS & BRIS- they are for-life-ers. Which means we've committed to keeping them until they pass, even when they are too old to produce. Oh joy, 2 cages gone and that much more feed to use! You can see why we made them for-life-ers though- our first huge wins.

I've promised one of my starter wooley does to a friend who's just getting started. She's having one last litter for me, then moving out! By already promising her, I keep myself on track to move her out. I've got a killer buck from her, a nice brood doe who I'm still working on getting started (ergh) and then this last litter, so she should be well represented here.

I'm going to be listing animals for pre-sale soon. There will be a few hollands, some mini lops, maybe a wooley or two. As long as I pre-sale them, I can force myself to move them out! If I have to think about it too long, I end up talking myself out of selling them, by thinking "I could just do this one last breeding, line breed, breeding with this buck, that buck... repeat that breeding.."

Ugh! Here's to hoping I learn to let go!

Keep's Rabbitry

Sunday, June 22, 2008


I had a friend, Whitney of Suburban Bunnies in Virginia come visit. SO MUCH FUN!

There is nothing better than having someone come visit! She got the grand tour of the rabbitry, the cats entertained her, the dogs jumped on her and she got to see all the ratties, degu and our turtle!

In return, she brought down a pet flemish and an English Angora from Krys in PA! Wow! New bunnies!

She also brought down a Belgian Hare! Oh man, what a great breed! Bandit was curious, funny, sweet, potty trained- POTTY TRAINED! It took me a while to get used to the long limbs, long ears and long face, but wow! Hares are definitely a breed I'd consider getting a pet of! Tim really liked him as well- I can't imagine what he'll say when he finds out I didn't steal Bandit from Whitney before she went home!

This is yet another thing I LOVE about rabbit showing! I have friends in states across the country and I get to make friends with folks who live nearby- well if you consider 8 hours nearby :). We're making plans to go visit her! EEEK! :)

Keep's Rabbitry

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Woo Hoo!

It's official, I will be attending BOTH shows on the July 19th night show in Taylorsville!

Thanks so much to Joni, for offering me a place to stay the morning,

Thanks so much to Malena for offering to drive me down and back-

And thanks again to Joni for offering Malena & kids a place to stay, even if Malena snores like a freight train.

I love rabbit people so much!


Keep's Rabbitry

Monday, June 16, 2008

Hello and Goodbye!

I picked up three adorable jersey woolies from a friend Sunday. Two are gorgeous GCs, a REW and a tan pattern. The other is the absolute cutest little blue doe I've ever seen- daughter of a tan pattern doe I rehabbed. I am thrilled to death to have them all!

And yep, that means we're starting tan patterns in Keep's Rabbitry! The doe is bred to a black otter, so I can't wait to see what we get and how they turn out!

I also waved a happy farewell to a brood doe today. She was a good looking brood, but will be going as a classroom pet for first graders! I think she'll enjoy her new life of petting and pampering! We have a daughter to replace her.

It's exciting to bring in new animals, but always a little sad to say goodbye to the ones you have to let go to make room. *sigh*

Stay tuned for more holland brood does. I'll also be having some mini lops available in a few weeks :)

Keep's Rabbitry

Friday, June 13, 2008

Happy Friday the 13th!

Hope your rabbitry is safe from the perils of the day! Just make sure no black bunnies hop across your path :).

I've been piddling around with Angoras for a little while now, and I'd like to share the pictures of my two English Angoras!
This is Blizzard, a REW sr. buck. He had his coat horrifically mutilated- by me- in preparation for Summer. Don't expect to see him on the show table any time soon!

Meet my doe, Gracie! She's a black sr. doe and still looking good! We give her a frozen bottle every day, to help keep her cool with all that wool! I'm hoping to show her in July, at the night show. :) Let's hope she stays looking so good!

Keep's Rabbitry

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

JW Sell Out posting for a Friend

Due to circumstances, I am offering some really nice Jersey Woolies for sale.
Most are babies....some of them are registered and GC'd.
Check my site out and see if there may be something that you are interested in....e-mail me....and we will talk. I have tan pattern, self, AOV, a couple of agoutis and brokens.

Along with the rabbits, I have a small herd of pygmy goats for sale....1 billy and 2 nannies (1 of the nannies is bred,) I'm asking $150 for all of them.

Sorry I can not ship


As an aside, Brandi has a nice herd of animals and she undervalues them in regular circumstances. If you're looking to get a start in woolies, I would highly recommend emailing her.

Keep's Rabbitry

Monday, June 9, 2008

We're having a heat wave...

....a tropical heatwave.

It's HOT here in the South. Not just hot, miserably so. I asked Tim where our Spring went- it seems like we went straight from cold winter to the heat of summer!

We've got three beautiful litters here under 2 weeks old. Two of Jersey Woolies and one of mini lops! HOORAY!

But with this baby boom comes the worry. They are already in a nest of very little fur, owing to the 90+ degree temperatures here. My 3 week old mini lops abandoned their nestbox early last week and are just laying on a piece of board I put in the cage, giving them some relief from the wire, but nice ventilation.

I hate bringing nestboxes in. To begin with, it was still 82 degrees last night at 9:15pm. That's insane. It would be almost midnight before the temperatures outside and inside are comparable. So I'd have to bring in the boxes and take them out in the morning (then bring them in again) in varying temperatures. That's never the best thing to do.

Then, we have the difficulty of where to put them? My house has three cats, all of whom get along with rabbits and other small creatures. But I have no doubt that should a baby fall out of the box and not freeze, it would end up as a toy. Plus, the cats are nosy and like to stick heads and paws in boxes- I've seen this before.

Assuming I bring them in and find a place to keep them, I worry about stupid does. I have a first time mom outside- what if she doesn't take her box back? What if the mini lop decides she doesn't want the babies anymore? I sure don't want to feed them by hand, and I definitely don't want to foster 9 mini lop babies among a pair of woolies.

Thankfully, we had a thunderstorm today- it cooled us about 20 degrees, though the humidity is AWFUL. Still, the rabbitry is much cooler. We try to make sure the rabbits have water all day long, even the heaver drinkers. I've got ice sticks freezing in the freezer for bottles, as well as 20 ounce bottles freezing for relief for the angoras. I guess that beautiful black doe is going to need to be shaved down! So much for showing her.

I guess I'll keep measuring the temperature outside and in the rabbitry, providing relief for the adults, and keeping a close eye on the kits. If they can make it a few more days, temperatures should retreat to the mid 80s.

Keep's Rabbitry

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Tales from the Rabbitry

Sorry for such a late night blog (again). I'm working some funky hours right now!

Sooooooo I went out to check on Wooligans Nerissa's (JW) babies and her foster mini lop (from Barabas Abby). All doing great! The woolies were born early this morning, and the mini lop was born last night.

I do the rounds- Wooligans Raleigh (JW) isn't doing crap, Tula's Place Krys (JW) in the back has left the hay IN her nestbox, instead of moving it to another corner like last night- and Hoppin's Alexis isn't doing anything.

Then I notice a hunk of fur pulled from Alexis's body, lying near the nestbox. I walk to the back of the cage- nope, nest is empty. I look at her and see blood on her back toes. Hmmmmm......

I run back to the front of the cage, just in time to see her first baby born on the wire. I run in to get Tim, then come back to watch her give birth to *I think* 6 more. We scooped up the bloody little wriggly creatures and I get her nestbox out and supplement with other fur, putting HER pulled fur on top. Then I remove the 1 dead semi-unformed baby sad.gif.

After all that, I give Abby a head rub and run a hand down in her nestbox- I left it in with her because she's SO WEIRD- she's the one that went to Day 38, and she's been playing around in it.

To my surprise- I find another baby! ALIVE and full size, not runty like the other. I run my hand in to the box again and find a second live one at the front!!

Plus, Krys is still pulling fur!

So I have babies! 2 of the 4 have kindled, with another one nesting! I haven't had those results in quite a while! I'm ecstatic! I can barely function right now!

PLUS these are first time litters in my barn for Alexis and Nerissa! I'm just thrilled in general and so happy I just happened to walk out to the barn when I did!

Keep's Rabbitry

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Show Bunny Blog

There is a new blog out there in cyberspace!

Show Bunny Blog is a collection of blogs, breed info, rabbit type drawings, etc. It's just getting started up, but it should be an excellent resource to breeders new and experienced alike! The webmistress of the site is looking for information on breed profiles and blogs to be submitted, so if you feel like writing an article, definitely send it in to her!

Keep's Rabbitry

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Learning New Things

I'm always learning new things- and I love it! It helps keep my ego in check :P.

Some of the things I've learned recently about rabbits-

English Spots can have solid babies, marked babies (what you're hoping for) and charlies! I had no idea!

English Angoras are shown in "Colored" and "White". Not to mention, "white" encompasses REW, BEW and pointed!

If you use a blower on your wooled breeds- this weird white powder comes out- even if you only miss 1 day of blowing!

Belgian Hares come in Black, Black & Tan and White, as well as Red! You just may have to go overseas to find them!

"Heavy boned" in hares refers to the way they stand- they should look like they are on tip-toes!

What about you? Have you learned anything new lately? I'd love to hear about it!

Keep's Rabbitry

Monday, June 2, 2008

Fly Predators

News from the Rabbitry!

We recently ordered Fly Predators from Spalding Labs. I'm a little anxious, because I don't want to replace one pest problem with another, but the flies are terrible! Even with 100% freshly scrubbed cages & fly strips, the little biting buggers are thick and obnoxious!

So, after letting the predators sit for a few days, until movement was evident, I sprinkled them out today! I'll keep you guys updated about how I like them- hopefully they work.

Supposedly, the fly predators take care of the flies before they become a problem, by targeting fly eggs in the manure. We do have a few small places where cages spilled over and we weren't able to get it completely up, so I put a liberal sprinkling on those places, as well as in our deep sterilite containers. The last few went in pans under does with babies. Since manure piles up there quicker, they had a little more to work with than some of the others.

Keep's Rabbitry