Basic Information -
Life Span - 10+ years with proper care
Does - average weight 3.5 - 4.5 pounds
Bucks - average weight 3 - 4.25 pounds
Mini Rex Rabbits come in many colors: Black, Blue, Blue-Eyed White, Broken Colors, Castor, Chinchilla, Chocolate, Himalayan, Lilac, Lynx, Opal, Red, Seal, Tortoise, and White.
Color Examples can be seen here : Color Varieties
One bun or two? - Rabbits are generally happier in pairs. After all wouldn't you like to have someone to talk to? Rabbits groom each other, keeping hard to reach places clean. They also provide each other a warm cushion to lean on while the other takes a nap. Its better to get two rabbits from the same litter as they will be less likely to fight, or two close to the same age, and of course the same sex. Remember does can become territorial, bucks just make better pets!
Food - I feed my rabbits 1/2 of a cup dry pellets per day per bun. I sell premixed rabbit foods, see food page, for pets. Show rabbit mix will not be shared, sorry. But is based on AMD's PenPals foods.
** Pregnant does receive 1/2 cup up until 3 days before their delivery date. Once kits are born doe is fed free feed while nursing. Kits are removed from the mother 6-8 weeks of age depending on litter size and health of kits. Kits are then sold between 10-12 weeks, once again depending on health.
** Kits are fed free feed until age 4-6 months, then they are cut back to the 1/2 cup per day to prevent over growing.
Wet Food - I feed my rabbits wet foods 3-4 times weekly. I would not recommend feeding soft watery foods to kits under 5 months of age. Here is a list of "safe" foods for Rabbits. Safe for Bunnies
Water - Rabbits are given fresh filtered water every 24 hours. And have hay available 24/7. Their hay consists of 50% orchard grass, 25% alfalfa, 15% timothy grass, and 10% red clover. This is grown and harvested here, it is weeded by hand and cut and harvest by hand. NO spay is applied. I also apply vitamins and antibotics to water bottles to help prevent infection that can be contracted from shows.
Bedding - I use pelleted horse bedding in the drop down pans and change it once a week or twice a week during hot weather. The rabbit house is kept cool by 2 large fans, both on thermostat, to prevent night air drafts, since it can be sharply cooler.
Litter Training - As for indoor cages, I recommend Carefresh bedding. And indoor buns are best if litter trained. To litter train, allow bun to dirty entire cage litter. Then clean cage out completely and place a few droppings and a little "soaked" litter into the litter box. It might take 3-4 weeks for some buns to get the hang of it. Allow 2-3 months for baby kits. It's like litter training a dog, it just takes time.
Housing - I have stackable cages in my rabbitry, a buck stack on either end, and the doe stacks in the middle. Does are kept in 24x24 and bucks are kept in 24x18. Each cage has an exterior J-Hung feeders, external top filling 32oz. Lixit Bottles, and external hay bins to allow the most play area as possible. I use 24x24 stackables for does, and 24x18 stackables for bucks, made by Koenig's Country Supply . Weaning cages are 30x30. Then "potential herd additions" are kept in 18x18 until their fate is determined at around 3-4 months of age.
Environment - Rabbits can be kept inside your house, in a basement, or in a hutch outside. Rabbits can take up to 90 degrees and no cooler than around 65 degrees. If buns are kept outside in hot weather, make sure they have a frozen water bottle to lay on to keep cool during hot hours of the day. Rabbits MUST have proper ventilation, to keep cool. Over heating rabbits can have their ears misted with cool water.
VERY IMPORTANT - if moving a rabbit from a hot location to a cold or vice versa, the temperature change can only be 10-15 degrees MAX difference or the little bun could go into temperature shock. Their blood does not adjust as fast as some other animals, and can kill them.
Play time - Rabbits can be taken from their cage to play outside. Buns should not be allowed to "graze" on grass for extended periods of time. I recommend keeping them in a small fence SAFE from predators, even cats and dogs WITH A TOP (if not watched). Dogs can cause rabbits to become scared and go into shock and maybe die if they are scared, not to mention jump out of topless cages. It is best to introduce buns to other animals with a human present to assure both animals, no harm will be done. I also allow all buns to have a baby rattle made of hard plastic to play with. Rabbits can be taking for walks on a leash. Rabbits are like dogs, some will walk and some won't, they will have to be worked with. As for playtime inside, rabbits tend to chew on things because like rodents their teeth grow continually. You can either "bunny proof" your home or just let them have play time with you and monitor them.
Attitude - All rabbits have their own personality like cats and dogs. Some like to held, some don't. Rabbits WILL NOT bite unless felt threatened. Here are a few other ways to determine if you bunny is happy. Behavior
Maintenance - Rabbits will have to have their claws clipped about once a month, or foot problems could arise. I prefer to use cat or small animal clippers . Rabbits will also shed 2 times per year. It is best to take them outside to their "outside cage" and brush them with a Soft Brush. Rabbits rarely have to be bathed, but can be if need be. I usually use baby magic. AND once a bath is given, I recommend Papaya Tablets to prevent hairballs, even when shedding. One per day during shedding seasons.
Vet Care - Rabbits do not necessarily need shots, but vet check ups are recommended. Also, if not planning to breed, I suggest spaying and neutering your bun. Rabbits have many Diseases & Illnesses they can contract.
Allergies - Some who are allergic to cats are allergic to rabbits, but not all. Rabbits have "dander" like any other furred animal. Some are also allergic to the hay they eat.
Breeding - As for buying showing rabbits, I try to buy buns from well known breeders and buy buns with a pretty clean (within color) pedigrees. This will prevent any surprises in the nest box. For mini rex color crossings I refer to Mini Rex Color Crossing . Then once color checks out I tend to evaluate the bun with the Pencil Test .
For your local show schedule please visit : Show Schedule.
A small breed doe is normally ready to mate when she is 5 months old, and a buck is ready at 6 months. The medium size doe is ready to breed when she is 6 months old and the buck at 7 months. The heavy breed doe is ready at 8 months and the buck is ready at 9 months.
It's usually a good idea to select rabbits to breed whose ancestry has evidence of good productivity and good genetics. That's where productivity records and pedigrees listing show winnings come in handy. Keep productivity and show records of your herd just for this purpose.
You may keep a ratio of one buck to 10 does if you wish. The buck may be bred up to 7 times a week effectively. Sometimes, you can use the buck twice in one day.
I also recommend Reproductive Information for additional breeding information.