At What Age Can you Separate Baby Rabbits from Mother?

By Nadine Oraby | 2020 Update

If you have some experience breading rabbits, you must know that baby rabbits require some time before they can be separated from their mother.

So, At What Age Can you Separate Baby Rabbits from Mother? When is the kit ready to live on its own?

The right age is 8 weeks. After 8 weeks the kit can be separated from the mother. Baby rabbits should not be separated earlier than this because they need to receive necessary gut flora and antibodies from their mother’s milk. Also, it’s essential to separate all offspring at the age of 8, especially males. This is important if you want to prevent further breading.

If you want to know exactly what i mean, you can find the details below.

When to Separate Grow Out Rabbits From Each Other?


When to separate the baby rabbit from the mother?

The baby rabbit (kit) can be separated from its mother after a few weeks of birth. However, the kit has to be weaned before being separated. If the kit is not weaned first, it won’t be able to live on its own.

Also, after separating the kit from the mother, there are many things that need to be considered for the kits. There are various necessary precautions you must take. In addition to this, it is also pretty important to have a vet on the loop while the kits are growing up.

The kits go through a lot of problems and have to be taken special care of at this time. The kit requires an extra level of attention and care from the owner as well.

Weaning

Weaning is the basic process of getting the kit mature enough to feed itself and be socially independent. The weaning process takes around 4-6 weeks. This is the time when the kit is under the care of its mother.

The whole process of weaning needs to be supervised by the owner. The different stages of weaning are:

  • Right after birth
  • After around 2 weeks
  • The final weaning period

The above-mentioned points are further explained below.

Moreover, here’s a video you can watch to gain more information on the weaning of the rabbit:

Right after birth

The most crucial time for kits is right after birth. This is when the kits in a litter are extremely small in size and need the most care. The kit is barely the size of your pinky finger. Sadly, most of the deaths occur in the initial stage after birth.

Since baby rabbits are born completely hairless and grow hair in 5-7 days, they require heat to protect them from the cold. Hence, the more the kits in a litter the better it is, as they all hug and nap around all the time.

On the contrary, if there are fewer kits in a litter there is a chance they would die soon. Keeping this in mind the nest needs to be warm enough for the kits to not get sick and has to be cleaned frequently..

After around 2 weeks

This is the time when the kits are opening up their eyes, ears, and gaining fur. They are growing up now and need a little extra care especially for their eyes and diet.

Any type of impurity can give them an eye infection which could lead to a brutal death. In order to prevent this, the nest should be cleaned after every while. Apart from this, you also need to keep an eye out for the weak kits in the litter that could be lacking behind in having their diet.

Here’s a great Carefresh bedding from chewy to keep their cage clean and tidy!

The mother rabbit produces a limited amount of milk and sometimes it so happens that the healthy kit consumes most of it while the weak ones are left with an empty stomach. Seeing this, there should be pallets kept for the kits so they can feed on them. This is ideal since at this stage they are transferring to solid food.

The final weaning period

Now is the right time to separate the kits from their mother as they have now weaned. The process they have been through all these weeks has made them stronger and more resilient to the possible diseases they could catch on.

They are free to play now. They can come out of the nest to play and feed on solid food. Since they have grown hairy now, there is no danger of them catching a cold. Kits can now feed on solid food without the fear of developing digestive problems as their intestines are now mature enough to absorb any starch or sugar.

Furthermore, it’s necessary to watch the rabbits’ diet. They can only be fed certain vegetables. You must be mindful of the vegetables you feed, as some can cause diarrhea. No doubt an upset stomach in a case of kit can turn out worse than you can imagine.

Weaning after the separation

The separation occurs after the initial weaning is complete. But, there is still a little more to weaning to be done even after the separation. Some essential measures are to be taken for this purpose. Especially since the sexuality of the young rabbits could turn aggressive.

In order to ensure that the sexually mature rabbits don’t start multiplying, the male and female kits have to be separated from each other. Otherwise, you know how fast things get out of hand.

The following video shall clear your thoughts on the point explained:

Neutered or Sprayed

It’s true what you have heard about the de-sexed rabbits, they are more friendly and playful as compare to the ones with an aggressive attitude. After the gender separation, another problem could arise in the rabbits, and that is fighting with each other.

However, this can be prevented easily by getting them spayed or neutered.

What about their teeth?

Rabbits require proper dental check-up once they grow up. They have to be checked for wolf teeth.

What are wolf teeth? You may wonder.

Well, these are a kind of tooth that some rabbits have because of their genes, and it’s definitely not a good idea to sell these for breeding.

Since the sharpness of wolf teeth can affect the rabbit’s gums, these fellows need to be checked for possible periodontal swelling. Similarly, rabbits with any other kind of infection shouldn’t be allowed to breed as this will just ruin the upcoming generation.

FAQs

How can you tell how old a baby bunny is?

If the eyes of your baby rabbit are open, it starts moving in small distances and takes tentative walk-like hops, it’s probably 10-14 days old.

Do rabbits miss their babies?

The mother rabbit never leaves her babies. They are only separated through certain conditions or environmental changes where they can’t be reached or by humans.

Why did my rabbit eat its baby?

The mother rabbit often eats her babies due to a shortage of food. Since she can’t produce enough milk for feeding the babies, she kills and eats them, and tries again another year.

What should I do if I find a baby bunny?

In this case, the best thing would be to leave the baby bunny right where you found it. The mother will come to find it. If the bunny is injured, take it to the vet.

What do you feed a wild baby bunny?

At the age when they start eating, they can be fed alfalfa hay, carrots, and rabbit pallets. They shouldn’t be given cabbage or lettuce. They are like domestic rabbits, thus won’t bite.

Conclusion

Breeding rabbits on your farm or backyard requires extra-ordinary care. Many things have to be taken care of like:

  • They have to be fed on time
  • The nest is to be cleaned
  • The diet should be fine
  • The nest should be warm

All of the mentioned measures have to be taken care of in order to raise healthy rabbits. The kits require special care and time while they are in the weaning period as it is a difficult time for them and their mothers.

The mother rabbit, aka the doe, is aware that the kits must be separated after they have weaned. But, she can’t do anything about it and starts to leave them once they begin feeding on their own.

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