DEAR BUNNY WONDERLAND
‘I love my rabbit very much, I want to breed him. Can you help me?’
Before you decide to breed your beloved rabbit, please consider the following:
1. Have you brought the breeding rabbits to the vet to ensure they are healthy for breeding? You should do a physical check as well as a blood test to ensure the rabbits are very healthy (~$150/rabbit). Else, the babies they produce will be unhealthy and it will be very detrimental if they die prematurely. We have even heard of cases where mother died during delivery. This is a complication that is not uncommon even for humans. Especially if the ‘midwife’ is you who is not professional, the risk is even higher.
2. A litter can range from 4 to 8 babies. Within 5 months, they will grow into adult size. What would you do with these rabbits? If you do intend to keep them, you will need to sterilize them because parents + babies can inbreed and very soon you will grow from 6 to 30 within months ($200-300/rabbit for sterilization). If you decide to give them away, who will be committed enough to care for them? You definitely need to screen these new owners carefully to ensure they have sufficient financial and time commitment to care for them for the next 10 years.
Above are just 2 simple but very important considerations which I hope you can think through carefully. Animal welfare groups are constantly rescuing animals from families who bred their rabbits without planning ahead. With hundreds of rabbits in Singapore looking for a home every year, we strongly discourage breeding. Instead, we hope all rabbit owners love their pets enough to sterilize them. This will prevent them from breeding and contracting reproductive cancer. The chance of a rabbit dying from cancer can start as young as 1 years old and their chances are as high as 80% when they turn 5.