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Tuesday, November 30, 2010

It's official

It's definitely official. I'm doing a herd reduction and will be attending less shows.

I had considered going to Richmond this weekend, but I realized I'd be overly stressing myself mostly for POINTS. I'm trying to get an edge on my competitive nature (to a certain degree) and with so many other things going on Saturday and Sunday, I don't want to kill myself over a few points for the rankings. My animals aren't going to be any nicer, or any uglier if I'm 10th on the points list or 100th! This is what I am telling myself, anyway, because I really do enjoy shows. I just feel bad spending so much money on entry fees and travel!

So, there we go. Less shows... More money.

On to the herd reduction, I know at this point in time I am going to be letting a Black Otter Sr. Doe go. She's never been bred because she's not a very old senior yet. If I don't sell her by x date, I'll be breeding her to get her started. I'm also going to have a black almost senior buck.

I also have my eye on a few others that I need to look though. It's unfortunately been super cold or super rainy, and with other things on my plate, I've had to wait on getting out there and going through the animals. Bahhhhhhhh. Maybe tomorrow! Fingers crossed, anyway.

Keep's Rabbitry

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Cutting back

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving!

I've been thinking about cutting back on the herd numbers and doing less shows lately.

I don't do a TON of shows as it is- I try to hit most of the ones in NC and hopefully do a national or convention show per year. I enjoy it, but it's a lot to keep up with as far as devoting pretty much an entire weekend to a show- we get there early, spend all day at the show, drive x hours home and then spend Sunday trying to recover a bit.

I already said a few months ago I was not going to try as hard for points this year (though to be honest, I didn't do much last year as far as *trying* to get points. I just showed my regular shows and showed the regular number of animals, with the exception of going out of my range to go to PaSRBA).

I dunno- I know I will definitely be moving out some animals. That has to happen anyway because I'm full up as far as cage space goes, but I may cut my already pitiful number of does down a bit to scale down my breeding program.

Keep's Rabbitry

Friday, November 19, 2010

Convention Day 3- Judgement Day

Keep's Panda- 3rd place broken junior buck

We rolled up to the Convention Center about a quarter to 8. Judging was set to start at 8am, so imagine my surprise when I hurried to the wooly aisle to find out that Agoutis were already on the table! O.O Thankfully I didn't have any showing in that color group, so I clipped my cages, did a quick wool check and started to feed and water my bunnies.

I believe this was part of the broken senior buck class

Broken Junior bucks being judged

Judging always makes me really nervous- especially at Convention, where you can't see a lot usually, you can't hear and the classes are large, so it takes forever. I stuck around until the broken junior doe class and I finally couldn't take it anymore. I went to find Whitney and seeing that Hares weren't slated to go up until Tuesday, we all decided to go grab lunch and do more sight-seeing. I don't remember if this was the day we went to see the Foshay Tower or we went to see the Sculpture Garden- I'll just do a separate post and put up pictures from both of those incredible experiences!

Keep's Heart Throb, looking ADORABLE

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Convention, Day 2

Creme D'Argent resting in his coop

Wow, so Day 2 of Convention, Sunday, was very much a sight-seeing day. We headed to the showroom first thing that morning to check on the bunnies. With everyone settled in and eating, we went to the Mall of America.

The Spongebob Ride in the Mall!

That was seriously a crazy experience. It's a super huge mall with an indoor theme park. Oh yeah! We rode rollercoasters inside of a mall. How insane is that? We didn't do much shopping, I think everyone agreed that we weren't in Minnesota to go to regular old stores. We wanted to get out and see the state!

Mill Ruins

There were some fascinating abandoned Mill parks and of course- we went and spit in the Mississippi River for luck! We went back to the Mill Ruins several times during the trip.

We also took a quick trip over in to Wisconsin, so we could all add a state to our "traveled to" list.

Checkered Giant, after his wild night out.

We heard that the Checkered Giants busted down their coops one of the nights of Convention and were running amok all night long throughout the showroom. Supposedly when they opened up the Convention Center and found the mess, the security guard threw his hands up, took a step back and said "I'm not dealing with this!"

Keep's Rabbitry

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Convention, Day 1

We did something I've never done for a large show before- we FLEW! It was wild. We flew first to Atlanta, before catching the next flight to Minnesota. Baggage Claim was a nightmare and apparently in Minnesota they don't really "do" Sky Captains, which made it rough on us to get my friend and roomie's Belgian Hares to the rental car area! Thankfully we found someone with a car to haul the bunnies around.

Unfortunately, troubles didn't end there! We realized that there was no way two large dog kennels full of large rabbits were going to fit in the Hyundai Sonata we were given as a rental car. We upgraded and finally were able to get on our way- with Whitney illegally sitting in what I can only estimate as approximately a foot of space.

One of the dog crates and the Sonata.

Thanks to Lisa, we found out that the line to check in that was stretching around the building was well over an hour wait, so we found a metered spot. I met up with Lisa to get my bunnies and we managed to sneak them inside the building, before getting caught by a security guard. Thankfully he let us continue on to the show room, but it was clear we weren't going to get Whitney's animals in the same way.

Thankfully, while we were checking in Tim happened to plop down next to Teri Reymann, who recognized my rabbitry name! She was such a sweetie and volunteered the use of her cart to us- so Tim and Whitney headed out to get the hares while I checked over my wooly babies. They all came through the trip fairly well, though several completely blew their coats and several lost a lot of condition. Since they had driven a straight 20 hours, I can't say I blamed them at all!

The woolies at check in, looking tired!

We got everyone settled in- fed, watered, ziptied, etc and then headed out. We finally made it to the hotel, where we were greeted with a "Welcome Rabbit Breeders" sign, featuring a Belgian Hare. I should have known then it was going to be a Hare kind of week! We dropped off our bags and my carriers, then headed out for a very late dinner. The three of us were nodding off over our food. It was an early night for all of us, we were completely exhausted after the worry and stress of getting the animals to Minnesota, then settled in for what was going to be a long few days!

Keep's Rabbitry

Friday, November 12, 2010

Back From Convention!

We're back from Convention and wow. It was definitely an interesting experience- this is only my second convention. I've learned a few things and will be implementing a new sales policy for future conventions, to help make the process less stressful for me.

We did really well considering. My lovely friend Lisa Young transported the animals 20+ hours for me and wow- some of them really took the trip hard! Poplar, Cairo, Lifeline and Juniper all completely blew their coats or heads- or both!

Despite that, here are my results!

Broken Jr. Buck- 3rd
Self Sr. Doe- 4th
Self Sr. Buck-10th
Shaded Jr. Doe- 4th
Shaded Jr Buck- 7th
Shaded Sr. Buck- 6th
Shaded Sr. Buck- 9th

So I didn't do as well as I would have liked, but hey, I did pretty darn well, I think! I was rooming with the BOSB Belgian Hare owner. She had a pair of Keep's Hares and I'm happy to say Keep's Bandito Jr. placed 6/12 in the senior buck class! He produced the 2/12 animal though! YAY!!! She also named a rabbit for me- and Keepee won the Senior Doe class! I'm not sure how Keep's Ariel placed, it was a very large senior doe class, but I think she held her own pretty well.

I fell in love with at least a dozen breeds this week! I have to say, I learned so much about Rhinelanders, I'm looking at them in a whole new light!

I've got so many Convention stories to share, but I'll have to get to those a little later, I'm still completely exhausted!

Keep's Rabbitry

Friday, November 5, 2010


We are leaving tomorrow to fly up to Minnesota for Convention! The rabbits are already on the road.

I'm so excited- I get to see a new part of the country, see friends I get to visit with maybe once a year (or less often) and of course- a week off work for a rabbit show! SQUEE!

I will be taking my laptop, which I wasn't expecting to do, so there may be an update or two. I'm also planning on taking pictures like CRAZY.

Everyone keep your fingers crossed for a safe trip for all the folks and the bunnies headed up to the Convention and for a safe trip home!

Keep's Rabbitry

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


I'm feeling REALLY selfish right now, so I'm going to talk it out here.

I love Keep's Tryon. LOVE him. I owe that buck a lot, several national placings, the quality of my shaded herd, my first big wins, etc. So, I've always said he has a home here for life.

I've found myself using other bucks a lot more lately. Part of it is because he's in the pedigree of nearly every shaded rabbit, but now that's just not true- I've got several unrelated bucks and several unrelated does.

My goal lately has been to slightly "upsize" my woolies. I LOVE their size and I love them small, but I want to keep them from getting too tiny to compete. Tryon is a beautiful, bulky, man beast of a bunny, but he's also kind of small.

He has started being pitiful in his cage whenever he sees someone else get a lady friend.

I'm wondering if it's selfish to keep him. After all, he had a 1 in a million impact on my herd and I know he'd do that anywhere he goes.

I still show him and he seems to really love being on the table. Judge Jamie Green mentioned his "presence" on the table at the last show. He loves being admired!

He's such a goofball. I love to snuggle him- he lets me carry him around like a little rag doll.

I dunno what I'm even talking this out for, that rabbit isn't going anywhere. He's a for-lifer.

Keep's Rabbitry

Monday, November 1, 2010

Less than a week until Convention!

Less than a week until Convention!

Some of the things I still have to do:

Touch up ALL tattoos!
Clip Nails
Make Cage Tags
Print pedigrees for the sale rabbits
Get together food and water for the transporter
Adjust and clean carriers
Pack showroom bag
Finish packing clothing
Print all confirmations

-- Wow, I still have a LOT to do!

I was checking coats earlier and right now we seem to be about 50/50 on either nice coats or extremely molty!

I'm about to start the rabbits on daily Nutri-drops. This will hopefully help prevent them from losing major condition on the trip!

I tried to order some risers from KW Cages, unfortunately I never got a phone call back (all lines were busy) and never got a response to my email. So I'm not sure what the situation will be when I get to Minnesota! I'm really hoping I'll be able to find nice metal risers, but if I have to, I can make do with resting mats.

Keep's Rabbitry