Cage Prices and other newbie questions

Discussion in 'Rabbits' started by Gill, Jun 29, 2006.

  1. Gill

    Gill Member

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    Jun 6, 2006
    Location:
    North Carolina
    Hi, I am seriously wanting to get rabbits for meat production for our own family, Was thinking of starting with just one buck and one doe.
    What is a good round about price for cages, any ideas on used ones or should I just try to make some? Looking for cost efficiency, sometimes buying one is easier than making one! I like the plan for the one on here, but it seems that there si much wood that could be chewed or not able to clean real weel.
    How do you get the cages up in the air to make them more accessable with all metal cages?
    Thanks, I enjoy learning from all of you before I even start.
    What is a good book on rabbits?
    What are the best meat breeds and their respective temperments, I've heard some of the NZ whites are mean critters?
    Any ideas of where to find good rabbit stock?
    Gill
     
  2. Al. Countryboy

    Al. Countryboy Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    Alabama
    I bought a used cage that had 6 sections and 12 feet long. I later took out the centers to make the cages larger now have 3 larger cages. This cage had automatic waters and feeders. I gave $60 for this pen. I have NZW and Cal. and don't have a problem with either breed. The back of my pen is nailed to the wall and the front is held up by a couple of chains that are attached to the rafters in the barn. As far as number of rabbits needed, I now have 3 does and a buck. Why I bought another doe I don't know. I have 16 babies that will be ready to put in the freezer in a couple of weeks and this 16 are out of 2 does (one had 7 and the other 9). My other doe was just bred the first of this week and will wait to breed the other two does back again until later on in the summer because of the heat.
     

  3. Jennifer L.

    Jennifer L. Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Location:
    New York bordering Ontario
    I bought some used cages the other week for $6 a hole, and they included feeders and automatic watering setup. I'll be getting some cages built for mink later on this summer that were never used, and I'll be paying $100 for a 20' section with 10 holes. Those will need some work done on them to make them good for rabbits, but the guy who built them used really heavy wire, nice separators, etc, which make them seem like a good buy even at that price.

    I would ask on your local Freecycle if anyone has old cages they don't want any more, and if you want to do your own, for that number of rabbits it wouldn't be difficult. I spent a lot of time making outdoor hutches before going to the commercial cages.

    Jennifer
     
  4. twohunnyz

    twohunnyz Pacific Northwest

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    Apr 27, 2006
    Location:
    NE Washington
    I highly recommend trying to find used, all wire cages that maybe only need some wire replaced. That's what we did and saved $400 in the process, and they came with the J feeders. Nothing to sneeze at these days! From the research we did and also what I heard from others, it really isn't less expensive to make your own, especially if you'll only need a few. We also bought used water bottles, but some of the plastic was cracked causing them to leak so bad we had to throw them out anyway, so just but new ones, they aren't that expensive.

    As for breeds, there are so many that are good meat/fur breeds to choose from. Even heritage breeds, which is a neat plus, helping to conserve a breed of rabbit! I had heard NZ can be temperamental, too. We opted for Satins, which we adore. We brought ours home 3 months before breeding them so they could get well and used to us before we started reaching in and messing with their babies. It did the trick. We haven't had one single problem with our Does being aggressive. They, and the buck, are just plain sweet- and funny as all get out! Depending on the size of your family and how often you want to eat rabbit, 1 buck and 2 or 3 does is a good foundation. Our 2 does just gave us 18 kits, actually 22, but we lost 4 (the runts). Although 4 of them are spoken for, that will give us around 42 pounds of meat in a matter of weeks! Pretty awesome livestock animal, eh?!!!

    Books- "Rabbit Production", very good, also $40 new, our library carries it. "Storey's Guide to Raising Rabbits" by Bob Bennet, the 2001 updated version, excellent starter info, also found at the library. There are many others. I have several listed on our rabbitry website, but can't think of the titles right now. :)

    Well, I wish you success in your journey into the world of rabbits! You are doing it the right way, learning and gathering equipment first!
     
  5. Gill

    Gill Member

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    Location:
    North Carolina
    Thank you for the replies, I am going to go look at some rabbits next Tuesday, so trying to get things ready this weekend.
    Gill
     
  6. okgoatgal2

    okgoatgal2 Well-Known Member

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    oklahoma
    the all wire cages are easier to clean-spray them with vinegar to neutralize the acid in the urine and make them last longer. nest boxes can be made easily from scrap wood-drill a few holes in the bottom for drainage. my hubby makes the jfeeders out of flashing. we've paid $5 per hole for well-used cages, traded for some, etc...but we need more too, but we are commercial. hang the all wire cages with wire front and back-works great.
     
  7. Somerhill

    Somerhill Well-Known Member

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    Be sure the floors are good on your used cages. Rusty tops and sides can be wire brushed and repainted if you want them to look nicer. But rusty or sagging floors are an invitation for sore hocks. You can order new floors from rabbit supply places pretty cheap, and replace them yourself. I prefer Klubertanz - they have very heavy-duty floors which last a loooooong time.
    I have 8 year old cages that still have good floors in them.

    Lisa at Somerhill
    www.somerhillfarm.com
     
  8. rabbitgal

    rabbitgal Ex-homesteader

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    I also buy a lot of my equipment from Klubertanz. We build our own cages, but we get the supplies from them. Their prices are good and they carry quality products. The folks who own the company raised rabbits a number of years, so they know what works and what doesn't.

    I'd really urge you to read a book like "Your Rabbit: A Kid's Guide to Raising and Showing" by Nancy Searle, or "Storey's Guide to Raising Rabbits"/"Raising Rabbits Successfully" by Bob Bennett BEFORE you purchase the animals. Please, be prepared before you bring the animals home. Both books cover similar topics, but I think "Your Rabbit" would be a better purchase, even though it was originally written for "kids".
     
  9. Gill

    Gill Member

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    Location:
    North Carolina
    thanks, I requested the books at the library and have been reading a bunch on line,
    thanks, enjoy reading all the other info on this site and the links to others.