Homesteading Forum banner

1 - 1 of 1 Posts

Enjoying Polish Rabbits
1,219 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Somewhere on Homesteading Today a year or so ago (well, maybe longer) there was a post about what is required to preserve rabbit feet to make key chains. I believe there was even a source for the ends required to make the key chains. I have tried various searches and have not been able to find it.

Does anyone remember this post, know how to find it, or have the information? Thanks.

Edited to add: Tried the search again and found it! Sometimes the search function does give me heartburn.

Anyway - for anyone interested, here it is as originally posted by Pat Lamar on Raising Rabbits for Profit.


by Pat Lamar

Supplies Needed

1 Quart of 75% Alcohol
1 Empty Quart Jar with Lid
Borax (the "supplement"... not the actual laundry soap)
Bell Caps
Epoxy Craft Glue
Key Chain Rings and/or Chains
RIT Fabric Dye

Trim the feet and nails. Wash in warm, soapy water (mild dish liquid). Rinse thoroughly. Squeeze out excess water. Place feet loosely in quart jar (gallon jugs for larger quantities). Fill jar to the lip with the alcohol. Feet must be completely submerged. Let soak for at least 48 hours.

Remove feet from alcohol, squeeze excess alcohol back into the jar. Mix 1 cup Borax with a gallon of warm water. Wash the feet again. Rinse thoroughly and set on towel to dry. (I use a wire rack to allow air flow from underneath for faster drying. Take scrap rabbit wire & bend two ends to make legs. Simple and effective!)

When dry, feet may be dyed according to directions on dye package. Allow to completely dry, again. Do NOT use a clothes dryer, as the tumbling action WILL remove the fur!

Dip ends in dry Borax. Apply epoxy glue to the tips and insert into the bell caps. Squeeze the ends over the tips to secure them with a pair of pliers wrapped in masking tape to prevent scratching. Attach key ring or chain.

If using "rings" with the chains, use needle_nosed pliers wrapped in masking tape to attach them. When opening the rings to attach to the clasp, best method is to pry the rings SIDEWAYS without enlargening the closing gap then forced back into place, again. Otherwise, you may not be able to get the ring closed tightly enough. It will take a little bit of practice, but once
you get the hang of it, it goes quickly.

Bell Caps

Unfortunately, the "Lucky Charm" bell caps that you see on the popular rabbit foot key chains are made special only for that company. Those key chains are imported into the U.S.from Brazil.

Here in the U.S., you have two choices. Due to inability to locate suitable bell caps, most crafters simply use sleigh bells, open them up and remove the ball, and simply clasp them over the exposed end of the foot.

The other choice is the one that I prefer due to its attractive appeal. Only one company makes the bell caps large enough (18 mm size) for this use. They are available as a filigree cap in either goldtone or silvertone. Made by Western Trim Company in California, these are marketed in packages of 4 caps per pkg. under the brand name of WesTrim, and retail for around $2.00 per pkg.

WesTrim offers a wholesale catalog, but the purchaser needs to submit their UBI business license number along with $20.00 to qualify for the catalog.
Minimum first order must be $200.00 (minus the $20.00 refund). Future order minimums will be $100.00. As can be expected, the wholesale prices are considerably less and can also be purchased in bulk quantities (without bags).

Due to the wholesale requirements, not all craft stores will carry WesTrim products. I suggest you search in the larger craft warehouses for them. "Bell Caps" are classified as "jewelry findings."
1 - 1 of 1 Posts