A rabbit keeper with one or two rabbits recording may seem unnecessary, but it is necessary to keep records as the number increases.
Two types of records are required;
- Financial records
- Animal records
1. Financial Records
Financial records can be kept in a small notebook. With label on one page ‘Expenditure’ and another page ‘Income’.
All the money spent on the rabbit is to be entered under expenditure and all the money earn from them under income. If you eat a rabbit then enter the equivalent of its cost in the market under income but be honest.
Read Also: Processes involved in Rabbit Marketing
a) Animal record
Table: An example of a doe record card;
|Date mated||Buck used||Date kindled||No. born alive/dead||Date weaned||Number weaned||Notes|
The column for ‘notes’ is for recording any health and husbandry details e.g. total litter weight at weaning.
Another animal record can be constructed for growing litters to monitor their live weight gain, or how often they have been used for mating, etc.
Read Also: Husbandry Skills of Rabbit Production
b) First aid
Occasionally rabbits may suffer from injuries caused by fighting or by sharp edges on wire floors or on feeders. It is important to treat these injuries as soon as possible, to prevent them from becoming more serious.
First aid involves several steps as follows:
- Cleaning the injury with an antiseptic solution; dying;
- Treating with antiseptic cream;
- Protecting from further injury and infection.
It can be helpful to have a first aid box. This could include the following items:
- A bowl for holding antiseptic solution; a clean cloth;
- Antiseptic concentrate; antiseptic cream; cotton wool;
- Scissor or razor blade; bandage
- A syringe for dosing medicine
In conclusion, skills needed for a successful rabbit operation, therefore, include Observation, examination, record keeping, hutch design, building and siting, food identification, selection, production and storage, and good management.
Observation is a skill that comes with practice but can be developed with the help of questions to be used each time you visit the rabbit unit.
Rabbit examination is required after a new rabbit is being bought or rabbits are being checked prior to selection for breeding.
Weighing is done to check on their growth and their general condition. Nail trimming, rabbits’ nails need to be trimmed from time to time.
Identification: This is a way and means of recognizing one’s animals (rabbits) and differentiating between one’s animals (rabbits) from another farmer’s own and differentiating between individual animals (rabbits).
There are several methods employed to achieve this. Writing in the ear, Labels, Ear-notching
Record keeping and analysis: It is necessary to keep records as the number increases. Two types of records are required. Financial records and Animal records.
Read Also: Nine (9) Nutrient Requirements of Rabbits
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