Mating, the Essential Ingredient
Mating, of course, is the key action to all of raising a litter. Without this action, nothing is going to happen! Before you mate, look at the previous chapter of my site, Selecting mates.
Mating is pretty simple, but it does need some explaining.
The first step to mating is to check both rabbits, as explained in Selecting Mates. But the second step takes more action. I will explain the mating procedure.
After checking the rabbits, take the doe out of her cage and insert her into the buck's cage. You will see the buck becoming interested in the doe. If the doe starts fighting with the buck, remove the doe so as not to hurt the buck. If need be, put the doe in the cage rear end first and hold her down yourself. She shouldn't cause a problem, but if she really doesn't cooperate, you may want to find another doe.
If the doe cooperates, however, you should see the buck mounting her. To confirm that the buck has penetrated her, watch him. If he makes a stifled squeal and/or hard grunting noise and falls to the side, he has made contact. Let him do this as many times as he can. This will give the doe an extra chance of taking than if you just let him do it twice and then take her out.
After you take the doe out, look at her external sex organ. If it has some whitish-clear liquid on it, the mating should have been a success. I have had n experience, however, when the doe was mated three times and has that liquid there (by the way, this liquid is called semen), and she still did not become pregnant, so you can't totally rely on this affirmation strategy. Put the doe back in her cage. For a much better chance of a nice, big litter, mate the doe again the next day for usually super results. Just do the same thing all over again. Believe me, sometimes it's a great help.
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