Tuesday, May 2nd changed our lived forever. Sometime between noon and 2pm, there was suddenly a lot of wiggling going on in Robin’s nest box (have we updated you on who Robin is? It’s been too long since we’ve posted… lol) We were so very excited to find a total of NINE kits wriggling and squirming and looking like a cluster of those naked mole rat things.
Welcome to Bunny Grandparenthood.
The very next morning, well… things didn’t go quite as smoothly.
Both Miss Attitude and Molly kindled. Molly’s litter was hug, but born “on the wire” (in other words, not in the nice warm nest box). We worked for an hour and a half, trying to warm up the kits, which were all pretty much dead, and managed to save three of them. Since it was still fairly cold, even with the heat on in the rabbitry, we decided that there would be safety in numbers, and added those three kits to Miss Attitude’s litter of four.
We realized quickly that the kits from Molly’s litter weren’t strong enough to compete for nipples, which started a couple weeks of hand-feeding the kits with KRM (Kitten Replacement Milk) as well as “forcing” both Robin and Miss Attitude to nurse them. A couple days later, I found a deceased kit on the floor of the rabbitry. We’re still not sure how it got out, and it was devastating.
As time continues on, however, the “Bottle Babies” started growing stronger and better able to compete for nipples. While they were (and still are) smaller than their cousins, and not developing as quickly (it took longer for their eyes to open, for an example), they are quickly catching up and are holy moley terrors just like the other kits now.
So… yes.. we’ve been busy being helicopter baby grandparents (him, more than her). And we have such amazing additions to our growing farm family.
All of these little buns have already started developing their own personalities and quirks, and we’re very excited to learn more about them as time continues.