Archive for May, 2012

Grooming Holland Lop Rabbits – Pets or For Show

May 22, 2012

by Laurie Stroupe.
Grooming Holland Lop Rabbits - Mommy with babiesThe first step to grooming, of course, is to keep a clean cage.  It is important to brush the rabbit cages regularly and remove any fallen hay that will trap fecal matter and make for some really dirty feet.  I think that genetics do play a part here, too.  Some bunnies are just naturally cleaner than others.  When you are brushing cages, you will come to some cages that are a mess (just since yesterday!) and others are sparkling clean after two weeks.

The next step is to remove stains.  I find that peroxide works especially well on feed stains.  I had a buck with such a short muzzle that he couldn’t eat without getting food on his forehead.  Before every show, though, I could get it sparkling clean with peroxide.  I’ve heard of people drying the peroxide with corn starch, but I never had to do that.  I just let it dry naturally and then brushed the fur out.

Bunnies clean themselves daily just like cats do.  Bathing a bunny in water (with or without regular shampoo) can remove its natural oils and will make the fur worse than it was in the beginning.  I use a rinseless shampoo for stains only.  After spraying the stained area with the shampoo, I use a towel to dry and then finish up with brushing.

For rabbits just starting into a molt or those who haven’t been brushed in awhile, nothing beats just rubbing down their bodies repeatedly with slightly damp hands.  Shake the dead fur off your hands occasionally and continue until no more dead hair is being removed.

I also use an antistatic spray from FoxAllen Farm.  It really allows the fur to show at its best.  For longish hair that is flyaway, it is especially helpful.  I just spritz a tiny bit into my hands and rub them almost dry, then backrub the fur.  A bit of brushing and I have a very nice fur! (more…)

Are you looking for a pet hedgehog for sale in Colorado?

May 21, 2012

Buy baby hedgehog north of Denver
I’d encourage you to check out Hedgehog Lane – a cute name for a loving breeder of these funny critters! I’ve been helping Evelyn develop a website for her African pygmy Hedgies and it has been fun learning about these interesting animals. Did you know that there are over 10 species of hedgehogs native to Africa and Europe, but the domestic pets we keep are probably a mix of a number of species? Did you know that it’s true: these funny critters can roll into a tight ball when they feel threatened? Did you know that they have super good hearing and are even able to hear in the ultrasonic range? (Hey! I wonder if that’s how Sonic the video game hedgie got his name!) I didn’t know these cool facts till I started working on her site. That’s why website building is so fun; you get a taste of different lives!
Did you know that baby ones – called hoglets – look like this???

 

Baby hedgehogs

This is an adult:

adult hedgehogs

It’s completely legal to own a hedgehog in Colorado and in most states, so if you’re intrigued by these funny fellows, visit the website below to learn more about them and see if you’d like to try your hand at ownership. From what Evelyn says, you’ll be highly rewarded! She has a number of babies and adults for sale as pets and breeding stock.

 

Buy baby hedgehog north of Denver

Tribute to Bumper

May 17, 2012

I got my first bunny on March 25, 2002.    He was Bumper:

opal Mini Rex Buck

Just so everyone knows, I did not pick the name Bumper because it sounded like Thumper.  I picked the name before I even met him, and I didn’t know he’d be gray like Thumper.   I wanted a frisky bunny, one that was always jumping and playing and bumping into things.   I think that was the idea behind “bumper.”

Originally, I didn’t want a rabbit.  I didn’t want anything to do with a rabbit. I had asked for a horse, and a rabbit is not a horse.   Fall of 2001, my Mommy decided that a rabbit was both more economical and practical, and told me to “think rabbit” all winter because we would get one in the spring.

I told her to go away.

At Christmas that year, I got one “early” present:  “Your Rabbit,” a book by Nancy Searle.   All I remember was disappointment.  My mom claims I asked her, “what am I supposed to do with this?”   (Of course, a few months later the book was well worn and highlighted.  Almost six years later I had the opportunity to meet Nancy in person, and she bought a couple of my rabbit books.  That was cool!)

Then came Christmas with the extended family.  There are nine cousins, and we used to do a gift exchange, so the parents didn’t have to buy presents for all nine.   One aunt in particular was known for giving a large batch of presents to whichever cousin her son drew in the exchange.   Everybody liked to get gifts from Aunt Sally.  That year,  Aunt Sally had me.  And I got… a boatload of rabbit stuff.   What a letdown.  She gave me these bags of rabbit food.  They smelled like alfalfa — and to me, that was awful.  They stank up the car on the way home.  They sat in the basement and stank all winter.  I couldn’t believe how bad they smelled.

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So spring comes, and a rabbit starts to sound a little more interesting.   We visited a few local shows.  I wanted a Mini Lop, but my brother wanted a Mini Rex.  I’m glad we went his way.

In mid-March 2002 we visited the home of a well-established Mini Rex breeder here in Michigan.  We came to the house, and she sent her daughter out on her bicycle to the barn, which apparently was some distance away through the woods.   Eventually the girl reappeared, with a rabbit carrier swinging from her bike handle, and a bunny in it.   We were a little concerned at this mode of transit, for the rabbit’s sake, but we needn’t have worried.  That rabbit was FEARLESS.  We took it home.

But it wasn’t Bumper.   That one, a castor Mini Rex, became my brother’s rabbit.  To find me one, we went to the home of a girl who was aging out of 4-H and selling her Mini Rex.  She was really nice and helpful, and showed us around her barn and helped us with some rabbit care tips.  She pointed out several bunnies for sale, but one caught my fancy.  According to her, he was an adult but still young, had pretty good show type, and was more playful than most of them.  My Bumpey.

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Opal Mini Rex

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He never did much in the breed classes, but was my showmanship bun for a time.  He retired early though, and was my little buddy.   Occasionally I would take him to a 4H meeting, but that seemed to make him nervous.  He would snuggle up to me and lick my hands and face.  He didn’t do that at home so much, just while we were in “scary public places.”

I didn’t get into breeding (purebred) Mini Rex, so never used him (*cough* much) as a herdsire.  But I sure loved him.  I’ve often wondered, if I could have only one rabbit, of any I’ve ever owned, which one would it be?  Only one other bunny, Baxter, ever came close to Bump.  I think I’d take them both.

Looking over some of my own writings recently, I came across this note from April 4, 2006.  Pardon the spelling:

Bumper disapeared on April 1st, 2006. I’m not sure he’s dead, but it’s likley I’ll not see him again. I don’t know how it happened. I was letting him run around the yard the day before like I always do, and I distinctly remember putting him back in his cage that day. I remeber because it had been raining and he was muddy. The next day his cage door was open, his feed uneaten, and he was gone.

There was no possible way he could have gotten out of the barn, I checked the inside and the outside: there were no holes. But wherever he is, I think I’ve lost my Bummy.

He never showed up again.

Bumper would be 11 years old today, as old as I was when we met.   Happy birthday, little guy!  I love you still!

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Just a Picture

May 10, 2012

crazy rabbit

I hope it makes you smile, too.

Florida Holland Lop Breeder – Lazy Livin’ Farms

May 7, 2012

Lop-eared Bunnies for Sale: Pet and Show Quality

Hey everyone!  If you haven’t seen it yet I’d like to invite you to check out Lazy Livin’ Farms: a small rabbitry with high-caliber Holland Lops for sale in Florida.   Located on the western part of the state in Citrus County, Lazy Livin’ Farms is owned by Wanda and her husband.   He raises Australian Lowline Angus, but her first love, critter-wise, is the Holland Lop breed.

Click the screenshot below to enter the site!

Holland Lops in Florida

 

It was a pleasure to help Wanda with her website!  Here are a few of her animals:

 

Beau, her herd buck.   Beau took BOSB at a recent show.

Holland Lop Bunny from Florida

Black Tort Male Holland Lop from Florida Breeder

 

This is Digit.  Isn’t that such a cute name?

Digit - cute holland lop bunny

 

Last but not least, a pile of baby Berkshire piglets!!!

Berkshire pig breeder in FLorida
Click to Visit Lazy Livin’ Farm