Rabbit Farming - 6
Considerations Before You Start Raising Rabbits
are raised for show, fur, home or commercial meat
production, laboratory animals, and breeding stock. People
living in urban areas or on small acreages often consider
because space requirements are minimal.
Keeping rabbits can be a satisfying experience as well
as contributing to the family income and diet. But the
following facts should be considered before starting a
- Be sure there is a market for the product. There are few
if any rabbit processing plants in the Midwest, thus the
family table and neighbors are the primary market. The
demand for rabbit has not grown like that for poultry.
- Rabbits require daily care.
- Check local zoning laws and health requirements before
starting a rabbitry.
- The technology of rabbit production has not experienced
the rapid advances of other livestock industries.
- Rabbits are ready to breed upon reaching maturity. The age
of maturity will range from 5 months for the small breeds to
9 to 12 months for the large breeds. One buck to each 10
does is suggested as a maximum with 4 to 5 matings per week
for limited use, 2 to 3 matings per week for continuous use.
Breeding difficulties may occur during temperature extremes,
particularly hot weather. Houses with good insulation,
fan-ventilation and an evaporative-type cooling system will
improve breeding during hot weather.
An adequate supply of clean, fresh water, feed, and salt
spools should be available to the rabbits at all times. The
condition of the doe, buck, or young bunnies will determine
how much feed to give at each feeding.