Rabbit Breeding for Meat – A Beginner’s Guide

Raising Rabbits for Meat

If you are a novice at raising pets, rabbits can be a great choice in the beginning. As backyard pets, rabbits are not only easy to raise but also cheap on the pocket. These furry creatures make good pets, consume less resources, are docile and kids love them. A bunch of rabbits can be raised in a small shelter/cage. And the best part is, you get abundant supply of genuine rabbit meat. Raising rabbits for meat purposes can be extremely rewarding when the grocery stores are no longer open.

Rabbit Meat – Home Cooked Delicacy

When it comes to meat proteins, rabbit meat is actually a rare delicacy. It does not belong to the staple sources of proteins. That crown belongs to chicken and beef. However, rabbit meat can be a healthy alternative to the standard meat proteins. On top of that, meat sourced from rabbits is said to be far healthier in many different ways. It is lean, high in proteins, less fatty and extremely soft. An average rabbit can provide you with 2.5 – 3 pounds of meat. This is helpful because unlike beef, pork, deer, buffalo, elk or goat, an adequate amount can be had for dinner without having to worry about safely storing the extra meat after butchering. In case you have to freeze rabbit meat (and have the ability to do so), no problem. It won’t turn stale and freezes exceptionally well.

Rabbits are the ‘mating kings’ of the animal kingdom. It’s no wonder Playboy’s Hugh Hefner chose the rabbit symbol for his iconic magazine! A healthy female rabbit produces 6 – 7 litters a year, with one litter producing roughly 6-8 offspring. This means you can easily raise roughly 40 – 60 rabbits every year starting with just one male/female pair. A healthy rabbit offspring takes about 10 weeks to mature fully. So, the returns are quick and assured.

Raising Rabbits – Convenient and Friendly

Rabbits can be raised economically and without much fuss at all. A hutch (the rabbit’s dwelling), can be built fairly inexpensively using simple materials. Any warm place in the backyard can also suffice. Food isn’t a big issue either. They consume cheap pellets or any backyard vegetables. You can also raise them on vegetarian leftovers to further save money and maximizing your resources. And with the open space in the backyard approach, they can simply roam about and look for food themselves (free range bunny if you wish).

Overcoming Disadvantages (Rabbits are Cute)

One of the prime disadvantages of raising rabbits is the owner getting emotionally attached to his rabbits. These furry animals are extremely cute and friendly. So, if you are raising them for food purposes it is advised not to be carried away by emotions. Moreover, rabbits mate quickly. As such, new offspring keep coming and there is little time for attachment. The purpose of their breeding must always be remembered. Maintain a fine line between pets and commercial meat animals. Make sure everyone in the family feels the same especially the kids.

If done correctly, Rabbits can be a great source of meat – whether you’re homesteading, looking for sustainable resources  or providing for you family in a global collapse. Once you get the hang if things, you will realize that breeding rabbits can be a truly rewarding strategy for food and survival.

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