Toni's Coneys

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Grooming Mini Rex

Posted on October 19, 2012 at 7:35 AM

Grooming mini rex can be different from grooming rabbits with normal coats. Here's how I groom my mini rex.

All rabbits get groomed at least twice a week, but I like to do it every day.

The brood does and bucks get groomed with a wide-toothed rubber brush. I go from head to tail, tail to head, and back. Then I follow up with a soft-bristle brush to remove any loose hairs.

Any rabbit that is molting gets brushed with a slicker. I am careful to o...

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Winterizing the Wabbitry

Posted on October 8, 2012 at 9:40 AM Comments comments (0)

This year I am winterizing my rabbitry before cold weather hits. Mom and I took the cages out of the shed, and we hosed down the shed walls and floor, the cages, and the trays. I give each of my rabbits a snug box for the winter, and put away the hay racks. All the rabbits get a box because I like to leave the shed doors and window open as much as possible during the day. Fresh air and sunshine are the best preventative medicine. The rabbits can go into their boxes if they want to be w...

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Why Choose Mini Rex?

Posted on September 9, 2012 at 3:55 PM Comments comments (0)

Mini Rex are the most popular breed of rabbit in the United States. Besides their incredible fur, why are mini rex such a good choice? Here are some reasons I love them as show rabbits and pets:

Show Rabbits -

Mini rex are very competitive. They are usually the most numerous breed at shows, in both open and youth. The quality of the rabbits is high, with close competition. Sometimes one breeder wins Best of Breed, next time it's someone else.

They come in a mul...

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Cage Dividers

Posted on September 6, 2012 at 5:15 AM

Good cage dividers make good neighbors.

 

If you are planning to have rabbits next to each other, you will need dividers. The best dividers let air and light through, while preventing the rabbits from harming each other. For the most part, rabbits like to see other rabbits. They enjoy the company and feel safer.

 

Wire is a good choice in most cases. That way they can see the other rabbits. The holes must be small, 1/2" by 1/2" at the largest. If the holes ...

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Heat Protection

Posted on September 5, 2012 at 1:50 PM

Heat is the hardest thing to deal with when raising rabbits in Iowa. We try all the usual tricks, such as ice bottles and fans. This summer we tried something new. We cliped up old sheets over the outside walls that had sun beating on them all day. We used white flannel sheets, and attached them to the eaves of the shed with giant binder clips. We secured the sheets at the bottom by setting bricks on the extra cloth on the ground. We also put of sheets of foam insulation under the roof and on...

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Ammonia Trouble?

Posted on September 4, 2012 at 1:45 PM

This year our rabbits have air conditioning. It is great to know the rabbits are cool and comfy. The main problem with air conditioning is that when you seal up your shed, the ammonia smell quickly becomes overwhelming! In our small shed, we found a simple solution. We use pine shavings in our trays, and remove the wet areas daily. After cleaning the trays, we spray distilled white vinegar into the trays. This keeps the shed almost odorless all day.

Cleaning Eyes

Posted on September 3, 2012 at 1:45 PM

Molting mini rex and kindling does seem prone to getting fur in their eyes. They then get a layer of whitish stuff around the fur, making an unsightly glob on their eyeball. This must be annoying to the rabbit, and it looks bad. It is pretty easy to remove with a tissue or paper towel. Hold the rabbit or set it on a non-slip surface. Being careful not to touch the rabbit's eyeball, touch the tissue to the mass. It will stick to the tissue, and come right out. If the rabbit is squinting, you c...

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Removing Stray Hay

Posted on September 2, 2012 at 1:45 PM

I like to give my stacking cages an intense cleaning every few months. I remove everything from the cage, including all the bits of stray hay. Picking out all those strands of hay by hand takes a long time, so I use a shopvac. First, I gather up any large concentrations of hay so I don't clog up the vacuum hose. Then I suck up the little bits. If hay does get stuck in the hose, hold your hand over the opening for a few seconds, that should unplug it.

Resting Mats aren't for Everybun

Posted on September 1, 2012 at 1:45 PM

I use resting mats for all my adult mini rex. I don't want any of them getting sore hocks. I used to give them to juniors as well, but I learned they are more of a danger than a help. Young rabbits' feet are too small, and slide down between the slots. I've had more than one junior get its toe caught between the cage floor and the resting mat. Last fall Gordisima's front paw got stuck and she jerked off a claw before I could help her. It took a long time to stop the bleeding, and weeks before...

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Stop Dripping Water Bottles

Posted on September 1, 2012 at 12:20 AM

Water bottles drip for many reasons. They drip if they are less than half full, or if the cap isn't snug. Another thing that will cause drips is changing temperature. When I first started raising rabbits, I only had three. I would bring their bottles to the house to refill them. I noticed that after hanging them back up, the bottles would drip for quite a while. Now I keep a couple gallon jugs out in the shed with the rabbits. I fill them up after feeding time, and by the next day when bottle...

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Building Steps for Wandering Kits

Posted on August 31, 2012 at 1:40 PM

During hot weather, young kits in the nest will often crawl out of the box to keep cool. When night comes, they are too small to get back in. I put two wood blocks against the front of the nest box to make stairs for them. They usually figure out how to climb back in. Sometimes I have to help them up the first time. It's pretty cute seeing them bounce back into the box one by one.

Claw Clipping Made Easy

Posted on August 30, 2012 at 1:40 PM

Clipping claws can be hard if your rabbit struggles or has dark nails. A few years ago, Mom took her rabbit out to the sunny, warm deck so she could see the quick better. We found that this not only helps with seeing the claws better, but the warm sun puts them in a lazy mood. Now we always clip claws out in the sun.

Overhauling My Website

Posted on August 22, 2012 at 7:20 AM

My website is getting a complete overhaul. I've added posed pictures of all my show rabbits and breeding stock. I'm replacing old pictures with new ones, and adding pictures where there were none before. I've improved the links page, and will be making some other changes as well. This weblog is where I'll be posting my rabbit news and rabbit tips from now on. I'll be making a page that is just for show results and upcoming shows. I hope to add a Red Guide page in the future as well. I hope yo...

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Six Years of Mini Rex

Posted on August 13, 2012 at 2:40 PM

I bought my first pair of mini rex exactly six years ago, with money from my seventheenth birthday. Those first two rabbits started me down the path to raising and showing castor mini rex. The doe was a broken castor, and the buck was a blue. Not a good color combination, but I learned a lot about raising rabbits with those two. I fell in love with the castor color when they produced a castor doe. At shows I learned what good castors should look like, and set about growing a castor herd of my...

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My First Best Opposite!!

Posted on July 23, 2012 at 2:35 PM

Spice won Best Opposite Sex at the Union County Fair in Afton! She is my first home-grown rabbit to win higher than BOV. She is only 3 1/2 months old! I'm thankful to have a good castor from Curry's last litter.

Juniper also did well, though he was the only opal.

Shasta was the BOV red, with Ginger taking second of the two.

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New Rabbits

Posted on July 7, 2012 at 2:35 PM

Over the last few days I have been able to find two nice new bucks. One is a castor, Hayworth's Nugget. The other is a red, Twin Barn's SRC Flynn. I have pictures up now, and hope to have litters this fall.

Goodbye Curry

Posted on July 3, 2012 at 2:30 PM

On June 24th, 2012, we lost Curry. He was such a sweet little guy, I will miss him. He was also my only castor buck, and the perfect match for Lavanda. Their offspring were all super friendly and great show rabbits as well.

Library Rex

Posted on May 8, 2012 at 2:25 PM

Lavanda's babies, now four weeks old, were the guest stars at the Adel Public Library this morning. The kids, and parents, loved the bunnies! Everyone got a chance to pet them.

The rabbits were very curious about all these small people!

It was a good experience for the rabbits. I try to introduce them to small children so they will be good show rabbits and pets for kids.

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A Win!

Posted on May 5, 2012 at 2:10 PM

Nutmeg, a rabbit I sold to a family in Minnesota, won Best of Breed for her new owner in a 4-H fun show! Nutmeg is the big sister of Lavanda's litter. I hope they follow in her footsteps!

 

 


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