Moonstone’s three babies are achieving maximum cuteness at one month of age. The angora rabbit fawns are little bundles of fluff that fit neatly in your hand. Two are white albinos with red eyes and one is a chocolate point with blue eyes. I believe the chocolate point and one white are female and there is one boy. They are still so young that I can be fooled when sexing babies. I’ll check again in a month. At that age their sex will be fairly obvious.
By copying what mother does, the little ones have learned to eat pelleted feed, drink from a waterer and bowl and nibble grass, hay, fruit wood twigs and apples. Young rabbits have big appetites. We go through a lot of pellets when there is a litter of rabbits to raise. Happily, there are only three this time so the feed bill won’t be as big as when there are six or eight to grow.
I talk to the babies and handle them frequently so they will be gentle and accustomed to humans. As they enter four to five weeks of age, the fawns develop a natural curiosity and are moving away from the protection of their mom. This is a great time to socialize them with humans.
Mom still nurses her fawns and allows them milk once per day. Whenever anyone tries to get a little extra drink, she hops smartly away. At two months she will wean them and the little ones will be ready to go to new homes. If the chocolate point turns out to be a doe, I may keep her for my rabbitry. She is adorable!
The baby angora rabbits are nearly old enough to go to their new homes. They will be weaned in one week and can then leave their mother. Rabbit breeders must be able to tell the sex of the babies they produce. Over the years I have shown several people how to sex a baby rabbit.
Telling the gender of a young rabbit can be difficult. I do not bother trying until they are at least a month old. Even then I can be fooled into thinking males are females. By the time they are two months old (at weaning) it is much easier to determine the sex.
The following photos and diagram are provided to help illustrate the differences in anatomy between the sexes of the baby rabbits in the above photo. I have distinguished three females and two males in this litter. It is nice to have more females, there is a greater demand for girls than boys. It only takes one buck to service several females. It is very important to prospective customers that they receive the proper gender rabbit. It is also important to separate the sexes when the babies are eight weeks old to prevent any unwanted, very premature, pregnancies.
To determine the sex of a baby rabbit, first hold the bunny on its back, supporting it with one arm and using the hand of that arm to gently push the tail down and away from the genital area. With the thumb of the other hand very gently press down at the front of the genitals and pull away from the tail area. This will open up the genitals and expose the shape. A little girl has a line, a straight opening, that starts near the anal area and runs up to the end of the genitals. A boy has a little cone that is expressed and presses upward from the genitals. The following rough diagram I made demonstrates the differences.
female 7 week old rabbit
female 7 week old rabbit
Here are photos of the genitals of baby female and male bunnies from the litter. Note the position of the thumb that gently depresses and extends the area to expose the anatomy. The babies are not at all perturbed by this procedure. Bunnies enjoy being held resting on their backs and stroking their bellies puts them to sleep.
I hope this has been helpful for anyone who finds sexing baby rabbits to be confusing.
male 7 week old rabbit
male 7 week old rabbit
The baby angora rabbits are twelve days old today. Their eyes started opening two days ago. The process is slow to give them time to adjust to the new sensation of seeing. The little ears are up and away from their heads. I’m sure they can hear well now. Their sense of smell is acute. When I am around the fawns lift their heads, pink noses wiggling as they sniff at the air to smell me.
The babies now sit up like rabbits rather than lying on their sides as helpless newborns. It is adorable the way they drape themselves over each other when they sleep in the nest.
Looks like all five are albinos, no chocolate doe for me. Maybe next time, if I can get the persnickety rabbits to mate again.
Mama bunny is busy cleaning one of the babies in the photo at the top. In the smaller picture above left, the fawn in the background is the runt of the litter. It is half the size of the largest baby. The tiny one is growing fast and will one day be nearly the size of the others.