Hello there! My name is Darren and I am a rabbit breeder in Clevedon, Auckland located approximately 10 minutes drive from Papakura and approximately 20 mins drive from Manukau. I have been a rabbit breeder for many years back in Australia specialising in Dwarf, Rex, Dutch and Lop breeds. Back home I bred rabbits by the hundreds but now I am enjoying the smaller scale of breeding here in Auckland!
I have been breeding lovely rabbits in Auckland for the past year or so. Here, in Auckland, I specialise in Dwarf rabbits.
Many people ask, "What is a dwarf rabbit"? Well the answer is that it is no particular breed like a Dutch for example or Rex rabbit, rather a standard rabbit that will grow similar (or a little smaller) in size to a wild rabbit. These are certainly not a very large breed. All our bunnies get handled from a young age and have exceptionally quiet and well-natured parents making them ideal for children. They don't scratch and 'carry-on' like many rabbits do. The secret is to have wonderful parents and to spend time with the bunny making it comfortable in both you and its surroundings. We are always available to answer any questions that you may have about rabbits both prior and after your purchase. Rabbits and breeding rabbits is a passion of mine so I take great joy in helping others get enjoyment from these wonderful pets! Before you purchase a rabbit you will need the following:
1) Suitable housing in the form of a hutch or secure cage (beware rabbits dig with instinct so you will need chicken wire on the bottom). You will also need this to protect them from Stoats if you are in a rural area. Cats also frighten rabbits to no end so try and keep the environment cat-free!
2) Bedding in the way of fresh grass, newspaper or hay.
3) Food bowl.
4) Water bottle.
5) Fresh fruit and veg.
6) Rabbit pellets.
As a guide for you I feed the following to my bunnies on a daily basis:
Clean fresh water, either in their Critter Canteen-brand name and blue in colour (recommended) or in a bowl. Be sure to replace this daily or more often in the warmer months.
Food/pellets- I buy mine from Countdown. You can get 10kg for around $11 and it is called 'Main Feeds Rabbit Pellets'. It contains an anti-coccidiostat which is useful in avoiding your bunnies getting gut infections. Along with this I give them fresh grass daily (we are lucky enough to have a paddock). If you don't, check the rural suppliers for hay or lucurne which the bunnies love and can also be used for bedding.
Fresh fruits and veg-My bunnies simply love apple and carrot. They will also eat banana, brocolli (without the stem), grapes (in small amounts), tomato, pineapple and just about any other fruit or veg is safe.
AVOID: Lettuce and cabbage. It can give them bloating. It is important to add the fruit and veg into their every day diet as the pellets are not enough alone.
If you like, get your bunnies a mineral salt lick. It's good for them and provides the salts and minerals they may not be getting in their diets. There are also many 'bunny treats' available often in the form of cubes which bunnies love to eat. These contain various grains bound together with honey or similar.
It's also a good idea to have chew toys for their teeth. Pieces of wood do fine if you can't afford manufactured chew toys. These are important though as the rabbits need to constantly grind down their teeth.
As far as my research shows me there are very low incidents or almost nil of myxomatosis or RCD (rabbit calicivirus) in New Zealand so I would say that vaccination would likely not be required. Obviously try and keep your environment as mosquito-free as possible.
A male or female?
There has been much debate about this but from years of breeding and owning rabbits I can tell you the following:
Males- make wonderful pets especially if there are two brothers that have been raised together from a young age and go to a home together. If you try and introduce another male with a male you have had for quite some time they will fight and the weaker one will probably end up being killed by the stronger male. As mentioned above, a solo male, or two males that have been brought up together will make excellent pets. They do not need desexing unless you don't want them to breed with a female.
Females- These make great pets on their own but avoid putting two or more females together. They WILL fight and one will eventually be killed. Again, on their own, fantastic pets. They do not need desexing unless you don't want them to breed with an introduced male.
If you wish to see any of our bunnies available for sale right now please look in our 'news' section.
Should you have any further questions please don't hesitate to contact Darren on 021 649 320 at any time! Alternatively you can use the 'Contact Us' section and send us an email.
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