Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Second Chance...


Welcome to the Rabbit Report... All is not well in the Bunny Barn. Tauriel gave birth to nine kits Wednesday afternoon. She pulled fur, however she had the babies on the opposite end of the nest... By the time I got home from school, the kits were ice cold and not moving... They were all bluish gray with sickly white underbellies and I started to panic. I didn't know if they were all born dead, or what had happened. I called the Goodwife and she told me to get them inside ASAP. I brought out a large bowl, stuffed it with hay and laid a warmed (in the dryer for a few minutes) towel down, then picked up one of the babies. It was limp and cold, and I laid it in bowl with little hope for life. After three more I pulled out a baby and cupped it in my hands. I tried to massage it and breathe warm air on it. The kit moved its front legs and squeaked at me, and I hurried the rest inside. Once inside, I laid them on our heating pad.

 The one who had squeaked and moved started moving and squirming around on the pad. I stole Tauriel's fur from her nest and brought it inside to put the babies in. I breathed and massaged and rubbed and soon several more were squeaking and moving around.


video
P.S. Sorry about my shadow, its kind of in the way almost the whole video, but the main point is my little narration and I couldn't really stand to the side and do the same thing...

The Goodwife told me to put them in warm (not hot) water (excluding their little mouths) to try and warm them quickly, then stuff them in a towel on Tauriel's fur. I did so, dried them well, then set a towel down so they wouldn't burn on the heating pad, then wrapped them snug in mama's fur and some hay.

 
When the Goodwife got home, she concluded that four of the babies were dead (which I assumed because they were limp and unmoving) and the others were moving and squeaking, so we took them back out to Tauriel. We packed them in her fur and checked on them again before bed. One of the babies were already cold, but we made the difficult decision to let nature take it's course. In the morning, the five surviving kits were dead. The Goodwife said that sometimes once the babies get cold, even if you spend time reviving them, they never spring back into full life. It is sad, but just the way things are sometimes. That morning we put Tauriel in with Spartan (because a lot of rabbit breeders put a doe directly back in if she loses her litter, it isn't bad for the rabbit) and he bred her three times. After school I put her back in with him and he bred her three more times. However, she is still hateful and rude, and even worse this time!! We are seriously considering getting rid of her, but haven't decided if we want to sell her as bred or wait until she has this litter... Raising rabbits is not for the faint of heart, and it can get quite upsetting at times. But what I am going to show you tomorrow makes it well worth it!
Until the next Rabbit Report, hopefully more cheerful...
 
 

11 comments:

  1. Awww, I'm sorry that the kits didn't make it, but you did all the best things to try to save them. Sometimes nature can be cruel no matter what we do, but you did a great job with a difficult situation. Hang in there and stay warm- I know there will be fat and happy kits in the nestbox again!

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    1. You are right, nature can be cruel! And the good news is, Eden's litter are VERY fat and happy!

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  2. Dear Youngun ~ I am so sorry that you lost the little ones even after reviving them. That would be heartbreaking for sure.

    I look forward to your next report.

    Have a good day ~ FlowerLady

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    1. Thank you! And that's alright, there will be other kits, and these were just a common mishap, it happens

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  3. --++++++++++++ Sorry, I stepped out of the room for a second and my 14-month-old decided to write his own comment. :) I think what he was trying to say is, "Think positive!" lol.

    Sorry about your rough time with the babies. :( It's so disheartening to go through all that when you are so excited and hopeful. It definitely looks like Eden is a fantastic doe for your breeding program, though!

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    1. HA! And its alright, Eden is a wonderful doe and her babies are very nicely built and healthy!

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  4. Well done you for trying to save those babies. We have kept rabbits so have had our fair share of dead littl'uns as well. It is nature's way, but it is still hard not to get upset when a litter dies. Hope you have more success with your next litter.

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    1. Thank you! I hope she does better next time too :)

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  5. Oh, I'm so sorry. That was a tough experience but you handled it very well. I know you did your best and learned a lot. I have to agree that sometimes, after doing all we can do, letting nature take it's course is the absolute correct thing to do. One of my favorite goat books mentions that the kids that are saved from the worst problems always grow into adults with ongoing problems. God knows every hair on every critters head and always does the right thing.

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    1. Very well said, and I agree. We maybe could have saved them by keeping them inside, feeding them with an eye dropper, etc, but they may have been very weak and in poor health in the end. That would not have been good at all!

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  6. I wondered about the warm water. And yes, sometimes it sucks to let nature take it's course but... I think the winter is the worst time to baby out animals (sorry different words for different animals :)). I've lost more sheep and calves to the cold than I care to think about.

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