Travis Johnson wrote:How much room do they have?
Liz Hoxie wrote:This is what I remember from my uncle raising rabbits. Is the buck anywhere near her? If she smells him, she may kill the kits. He also kept a quilt over the cage from the time she started pulling fur until the kits were going in and out of the box on their own. He would only move the covering enough to feed and water them. We were not allowed to play on that side of the yard until the quilt was removed. She sounds like she's very insecure. She needs to feel safe. If this doesn't work, cull her.
BTW, don't touch the babies until they start leaving the box, and ALWAYS rub the mother real well first to get her scent on you THEN you can hold the babies.
Joseph Lofthouse wrote:
It's a lot of stress on a rabbit, to have an apex predator poking her nest box with a stick. If an apex predator can see into the nesting box, then the rabbit can see the apex predator watching her care for her babies. That creates a lot of stress.
On my farm, the does had a nesting box which was completely enclosed and dark, with just a small hole between the lounging cage and the nesting box. We never opened the nesting box until the babies were weaned. If I had a word of advice, it would be to give her a dark nesting box, and then leave her alone to raise her babies how she wants to raise them.
Guerric Kendall wrote:Sorry if this isn't helpful towards your question, but I definitely agree with rabbit stew.
I've had rabbits that needed to be adopted by another mother(that had kits too) after theirs died after/during birth. Also, dead/stillborn kits needing to be removed from the nest box(that's often what starts the kit-eating habit).
And there have been other occasions which are not so life/death, such as moving the entire family since a rabbit in a cage nearby had mites, cleaning dirty/wet bedding, or needing to sex them at a young age.
I've told this to a few friends who raise rabbits too, and they were shocked. None of the instances caused any issues though. A lot of people may not agree with this, but they can stand it- and need to, for the health of the kits.
I've never agreed with the notion of not interfering with farm animals. They're domesticated, bred in captivity, and require care.
If a mother has a bad habit, then she needs to go. It's the same for any other animal, such as chickens who eat eggs.
Ferne Reid wrote:We've been raising both meat and pet rabbits for about 15 years.
The short answer is that, if the doe were mine, she would never have another litter.
When a doe has lost her first litter, our response is to give her more space and free choice food when she has her second litter. If she cannot/will not raise her second litter, we cull the doe.
We handle all of our litters from day one. Despite popular belief, a doe will not reject her litter just because you have handled them
Jon Wisnoski wrote:I have not read through this entire thread, so forgive me if I am retreading ground here.
Feed the rabbit some ground beef. Probably as much as she will eat, which probably is not much. I have been told this is because of iron deficiencies, so the right minerals might solve it as well, but the idea is if she is craving meat, feed her meat.
But then she might be killing the kits just to kill them, and "cleaning up" the dead kits because that is what a good mother does. In that case she is probably just ill suited to motherhood.