Monday, July 11, 2011

How they grow

This weekend, we bred the other female rabbit. Or at least we think we did. Remember, we're pretty much rookies at this whole rabbit-breeding thing, and I always find it amusing when things don't necessarily go according to what the books and websites say.

Since one of the females successfully procreated, we figure we're on the right track, at least. In hindsight, we realize that there was a distinct difference between the one that did and the one that didn't become pregnant. The one that did (we'll call her Female B) had a textbook mating period, if there is such a thing. The male mounted, went to town, and fell off, just like the books say. But Female A kinda just ran around in circles until she got tired, and then Male A looked like he didn't know which end was up. Literally.

But this time we took Female A and mated her with both Male A and Male B. Male B, of course, is an old pro at this by now, so he did his thing like he did with the other one, but he didn't fall off. He kept going and going and going (like another certain bunny), with small breaks in between. But he never fell off. So Sarah and I are left scratching our heads as to whose issue this is. Could it be that something's wrong with Female A? We've decided that we'll try a few other crosses (Male A with Female B, etc), before we narrow down the issue to Female A or not.

And this brings us to the six newborns. They seem to be doing really well, and despite my previous panic-laden post, they're turning out all right. I thought that the mother was just being a bad mommy, but it turns out that's how rabbits are. They give birth, lay around all day (not on the babies), and feed them once a day, for only five minutes. The rest of the time they pretty much ignore them (unless you try to get close to take a pic!)

Since the initial jailbreak, those little baby bunnies have escaped probably every other day, but I have been keeping my eye out and make sure to scoop them up before they get too far. One good thing about living in the 'burbs, is the fact that there aren't many predators out to find those babies before I do. It seems that the babies climb their way out of the nest box, then scoot over to the side of the wire cage, fitting through holes in the wire just big enough for their tiny bodies. The bottom of the cages have wires that are closer together, so it just happens when they make their way over to the side. Fortunately, they seem to be too big to fit through the holes now, since I haven't seen any jumpers in a day or two.

GeistSo the six babies are growing up nicely. Their ears are moving around, their eyes are just beginning to peek open, and they're all covered in white fur. So far, so good!

In a similar fashion, our little puppy Geist is growing up just as nicely. She's nine weeks old now, and I just readjusted her collar this morning for the first time, since it seemed a bit tight. Also, her ears are starting to stand up on their own, and her face is elongating.

Training is going really well, and she has learned some German commands already. She can sit and come to me on command, and we're working on getting her to stay. But so far she's been a really good dog. Her first trip to the vet presented her with a clean bill of health, so we're happy about that.

Oh, and keeping on topic, Sarah and I found out that our baby will be a girl! Yes, I saved the best for last!

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