We had some potential clients pop in and visit us this Sunday and things really didn't turn out that well.
On the strength of this visit I have decided to write this blog post (sorry for the long read), which will hopefully save everyone time and frustration.
These particular clients came in asking specifically for Mini Rex's, which really warmed my heart as they are not the most requested breed even though they are the best in my opinion.
We only had 2 Mini Rex doe's available and to top it off they are both Astrex (which is a rare breed). I didn't want to particularly sell them but due to things being a bit tight financially, I was prepared to let them go to the perfect home.
We had a long chat, different adult buns were brought out so that they could see the size difference between Rex and Mini Rex buns.
Then the usual discussion about cages/hutches/habitats ensued, as we are particular about how our buns are kept. We want the best possible life for them.
They had a huge play area with jungle gyms for children and places for the buns to hide. Although this sounds ideal, it is not suitable for 2 baby rabbits that are only 8 weeks old. I explained that they would need to restrict the space for awhile until the buns had adjusted and got a bit older.
I was then asked if I didn't perhaps have a breeding pair of rabbits.
A red flag 🚩 was immediately raised and I asked why would they want a breeding pair? Explaining that rabbits can and will have babies every month.
The gentleman got very abrupt with me and said that he was well aware of what rabbits can and can't do 😳.
I then asked what would happen to all the babies born from this back to back breeding. I was told that they were not planning to go into competition with me 🙈 and that they owned a local animal farm.
I was informed that the rabbits dug burrows and had there babies below ground. The excess baby rabbits were given away for free as part of the birthday party package that they do.
I explained that this goes against everything that we believe in and although we are breeders, we do not support the willy-nilly breeding of rabbits. There are far too many unwanted rabbits in this world, rescue centers are full and overflowing. We take in numerous unwanted rabbits as well.
He left in a huff, after saying that obviously he couldn't do business with me 🤦🏻♀️. Well duh, wasn't going to sell you rabbits to live in those conditions anyway. I must say that I did feel sorry for his wife and children, she was exceptionally embarrassed and I could see that she got what I was saying.
Let me set the record straight, should you wish to purchase a bunny from us!
We do not support backyard breeders, this includes animal farms.
I am 100% sure that animal farms have their purpose and it is wonderful for children that have never had contact with domesticated farm animals, to get this opportunity.
With rescue organizations overflowing worldwide with different types of farm animals, surely it would be better to have these on the animal farms (sterilized of course). Wouldn't this be a better solution than allowing these animals to overbreed?
The cute bunnies that everyone sees at animal farms are actually not part of farm life at all! Yes, rabbits were the first breed to be domesticated and farmed for meat but these rabbits are very different to the mixed breed pet bunnies at animal farms.
Breeding with intent.
Should you really want to breed rabbits, you will need to join your local rabbit club and learn about the breed that you wish to work with. We have a restricted genetic pool here in South Africa as we cannot import rabbits or semen. We do not have the dread diseases myxomatosis and vhd here in South Africa, which is why our borders are closed. We do not need to vaccinate our rabbits against these diseases and would like to keep it that way.
We welcome people that are interested enough to learn about genetics and would like to be part of the rabbit world. You will need to commit to being active club members and attending shows.
Hutches / Cages / Habitats
We are fussy when it comes to how our rabbits will be housed! This is not a marketing ploy to force you to purchase the hutches we manufacture. We are more than happy to give advice on suitable bunny living quarters. I personally have been involved in rabbits since 1994 and have learnt so much over the year's and am still learning. Our hutches are manufactured with the best interests of the bunnies in mind.
We cannot sell or home a rabbit if we are not happy with their living space.
I have dedicated my life to these intelligent, incredible creatures and as an ethical breeder I need to know that the rabbits I have bred are safe and happy.
When we part with a rabbit, we like to remain in contact with the new owner and our bun. This is why we offer a free 4 month health check and nail clipping. We are always available for advice and our extended bunny family gets preference for bunny boarding.
When getting a bun from us, you also need to commit to returning him/her to us if you can no longer care for him/her. This is our commitment to our rabbits.
Thank you for reading this, please feel free to share.
For all things bunny
Shirae @ That Bunny Farm