About Holland Lops
What are holland lops?
Hollands are the smallest of the lops. They should weigh between 2.5 to 4.5 pounds. These little guys make wonderful pets and are known to be little clowns. The most common colors of this breed are solids blues and blacks, broken, and the tort colors. I love the Hollands and am working on specialty colors like tri colors. lilacs, and chocolates! For body type these guys should have a short cobb type body and big blocky heads.
LLL's Dusty and her litter, 2020
I have finally decided that it makes sense to put all of the great websites of bunny care onto its own page. As well as share with you the practices that I follow with the kids to keep them healthy and happy. Bunny care is VERY important, if your bunny isn't getting the proper nutrition or aren't housed adequately other problems will arise such as no litters born and disease. So I hope that this page will help you bunny lovers out there!
If you have some favorite websites that you have found please share them with me. Part of caring for bunnies is to learn all you can about them, and I love finding new information and tips to help me better care for my bunnies :)
GRAIN----I buy my grain in bulk in 50 pound bags. I have an agreement with the owners where they order my grain fresh every week. When looking for the diet to feed your bunny it is important to look for freshness (just like with people food). The other thing that you are looking for is that it will provide a complete diet for your bunny. Almost all pelleted feed should provide a complete diet. Each bunny diet should have the following---16-18% protein, 2-4% Fat, and a minimum of 16% Fiber, most of the bunny diets will also contain appropriate amounts of minerals and vitamins, but it is good to provide other food sources for the bunny to have a balanced diet.
So what do I feed? I feed Blue Seal Bunny Show Hutch Deluxe. I have played with several grain sources and have found that this one works the best for me and my bunnies. I like how it has a higher level of protein because it helps my does with the litters stay in condition and the kits grow good with it. You do need to watch the bucks with this feed because if they get it free choice they do become fat.
Blue Seal Grain Information: https://blueseal.com/products/specialty/rabbit/
HAY----A good quality hay- Bought from a local farmer, grain store, or pet store. Is important for several reasons. First a bunnies teeth always grow, in chewing on hay it helps keep the bunnies teeth shorter. The second reason is that a bunny kept in its cage will sometimes get bored, having the hay to chew and scatter around keeps their minds stimulated. Thirdly hay provided approximately 50% nutrients and 30% fiber to the bunny. This really helps them get the additional fiber in their diet, according to the ARBA fiber is a good natural way to help reduce diseases such as enteritis which is caused by stress. (More information- page 82 of ARBA's Raising Better Rabbits and Cavies) You should feed hay at least once a week. My preferred types are orchard grass and timothy. I stay away from alfalfa because it is so rich.
WATER----Bunnies are fairly fussy little critters. If a bunnies water gets stale they will often not drink it. Also if the bunny moves from well water to treated city water they might not drink it. So it is important to observe your bunny and make sure that he/she is drinking and that they have fresh water everyday. Also when using water bottles pay attention that it is working, sometimes the little balls get stuck and the bunny can't get any water.
VEGGIES/ TREATS---- Bunnies love treats, it is important to remember that to much of a good thing can be bad. Many of the treats you can buy at the store are loaded with sugar so its important to watch how much you provide your bunnies. Also lots of veggies when a bunny is not used to them can cause diarrhea and dehydration which could kill your bunny. It is important to introduce veggies and treats slowly, and only with bunnies over three months old. Also make sure that they are clean and free from pesticides, as pesticides can poison your bunny.
List of Safe Veggies for Bunnies: https://riseandshinerabbitry.com/2012/02/26/safe-food-list-for-rabbits/
CAGES- Housing is very dependent on the person as to what they prefer. I personally like cages with drop pans underneath for I feel that it keeps them cleaner. There are many different styles and kinds I would just recommend you research for the cage style that work best for you. Try to stay away from ones that are made up of wood, as my experience with them is that the bunnies will eat the wood and the wood will soak up urine- which can cause an odor and potentially disease. If you do have wood parts in your cage buy some Vanodine disinfectant and use that to spray on the wood to kill any diseases.
SPACE- It is recommended that a bunny has 1 square foot of space per pound of bunny. So a 24X24 size cage would be fine for a Holland Lop. A smaller cage is also fine if your bunny is allowed time outside his or her cage. As long as they are able to get exercise. I like the little wire play pens, I can use them inside and outside on good days. The bunnies can hop around and dig, its better than watching TV
HEALTH and PREVENTION
Disease prevention is better than disease treatment. It is our job to keep the animals environments safe and healthy.
CLEANING: The first and most important thing to consider is cleanliness. Built up manure and dirty dishes are homes for many bacteria and parasites. If a bunny is in contact with that on a daily basis it can and will often cause disease.
The two cleaning products that I use regularly is Vanodine and Zaps It (found at bunnyrabbit.com) A lot of the rabbitries swear that Vanodine is incredible. It is safe for the bunnies and kills bacteria, protozoans and fungi. I use Vanodine to clean spray the cages, nest boxes, and things the rabbit can come in contact with. Zaps It is a professional grade cleaner that is often used in animal daycare environments. I use the Zaps It cleaner to clean my rabbit trays.
What I do for cleaning, is empty the trays out weekly, and spray them out with water and the Zaps It cleaner as needed. I use a wire grill brush on the wire to get rid of any fecal matter or hay that is stuck to the wire. Twice a year I pressure wash all cages and trays, use a bleach wash, and leave them to dry in the sun. I never put a rabbit into a new home unless I have washed the cage first and treated it with Vanodine or another cleaner. Nest boxes all get washed after every litter, sprayed with Vanodine and left to sit in the sun. Water bottles, food dishes, and toys get washed about once a month or sooner if needed.
DISEASE PREVENTION: I do a couple of practices to help keep my kids healthy.
Worming--I do check for worms twice a year. If I find any I deworm them, the product that I use I add to their water and is very reasonable. If you have a microscope it is very easy to do a fecal float yourself, otherwise it only costs $10 a bunny to test for worms using the vet. I like to know for sure that their guts are healthy.
Bunny Vac-- BunnyVac is a USDA licensed killed Pasteurella product for prevention of Pasteurella infection in rabbits. I have seen beautiful rabbits have to be put down due to Pasteurella. Even though its expensive its worth it to me to help protect my bunnies from this disease. Bunnies are given the initial dosages, and than boosters once a year. For more information: http://pavlab.com/
Vitamin Supplement---I also give my bunnies a vitamin supplement once a week, again in their water. It just gives me piece of mind knowing that they are getting all the nutrients that their little bodies need. I will also use apple cider vinegar in their water as that has many benefits as well. Typically I use the ACV with rabbits that seem off, not interested in breeding, or have bad coat condition.
DISEASE: I am not an expert or a vet by any means. There are several things I do to safe guard my herd from getting sick, but for treatment I always check in with my vet just to be safe. Since I don't want to tell you something that might be wrong, I have included some sites that I have found to be helpful and the names of a couple of rabbit books that have great information on rabbits diseases.
MERCK Online Veterinary Manual- (An awesome reference site- a must know for any animal owner) http://www.merckvetmanual.com/mvm/index.jspl
BUNNY FIRST AID KIT
I believe that to be prepared is the safe bet in all cases. This website has a great list of the items that are good to have in your bunny first aide kit. I just hope that you don't have to use it. https://thecapecoop.com/rabbit-first-aid-kit/
OTHER INTERESTING WEBSITES
A bunny naming suggestion website: http://www.pet-rabbit-care-information.com/unique-pet-names.htm
Rabbit Care Videos- From nail clipping to cleaning cages: http://www.monkeysee.com/play/9693-how-to-care-for-your-rabbit
Care and Feeding a Pet Bunny: http://www.myhouserabbit.com
Raising Rabbits: http://www.welshrabbitry.com/birth.html