It’s a common misconception that rabbits get pregnant every time they mate. While it is true that rabbits have a very high chance of getting pregnant when they mate, it’s not a 100% chance. Stress, diet, age, weight, and issues with the male can all affect fertility.
Rabbits are induced ovulators, which means they do not release eggs regularly like humans or other animals. Instead, the female rabbit releases an egg only after she has been mated by a male.
This explains why rabbits get pregnant much faster than other animals. They don’t have to wait a full cycle for an egg to release. However, just because they are induced ovulators doesn’t mean they get pregnant each time they mate. Several factors can affect fertility in rabbits.
What You'll Learn
- 1 What Can Prevent a Rabbit From Getting Pregnant After Mating?
- 2 How to Improve Your Rabbits Chances of Getting Pregnant After Mating
- 3 Should You Mate The Rabbits Multiple Times to Increase Chances of Pregnancy?
- 4 How to Tell if Your Rabbit is Pregnant
- 5 What to Do if Your Rabbit is Pregnant
- 6 What to Do if Your Rabbit Isn’t Getting Pregnant
What Can Prevent a Rabbit From Getting Pregnant After Mating?
Although the odds of pregnancy are high, there are several reasons why a rabbit may not get pregnant after mating. If your rabbit isn’t getting pregnant, it’s likely due to one of the following six reasons:
Rabbits are very susceptible to stress. If a rabbit is stressed, she may not ovulate or may miscarry if she does become pregnant. Common sources of stress for rabbits include loud noises, changes in routine, moving to a new home, and the presence of other animals in the home.
A healthy diet is essential for a rabbit to maintain good fertility. A diet that is high in fiber and low in sugar is best. Ensure your rabbits have access to unlimited hay and that they are eating plenty of fresh veggies.
Rabbits reach sexual maturity at around 4 to 6 months old. However, they are most fertile between 1 and 2 years old. After 2 years, fertility begins to decline.
Overweight and underweight rabbits may have difficulty getting pregnant. A healthy body weight is important for good fertility.
5) Issues With The Buck
Although it is less common, male rabbits can be infertile. If a male rabbit has a low sperm count or poor quality sperm, he may not be able to fertilize a female’s eggs.
6) Health Issues
Certain health conditions can affect a rabbit’s fertility. These include uterine tumors, uterine infections, and ovarian cysts. If you suspect your rabbit has a health problem, take her to the vet for an examination.
How to Improve Your Rabbits Chances of Getting Pregnant After Mating
There are several things you can do to improve your rabbit’s chances of getting pregnant after mating:
Ensure They Have a Proper Diet
A healthy diet is essential for good fertility. Make sure your rabbits have unlimited hay and fresh veggies available.
Ensure They Are of Age
A rabbit should be between 6 months to 2 years old for optimal fertility.
Reduce Their Stress Levels
You can reduce a rabbit’s stress level by ensuring they have a quiet place to nest, avoiding loud noises, changes in routine, and exposure to other animals.
Should You Mate The Rabbits Multiple Times to Increase Chances of Pregnancy?
Although this would increase the chances of pregnancy, it comes with risks. Rabbits have two uteruses, which means they can technically get pregnant in both simultaneously. This is dangerous for both the mother and the babies, as they could end up being underweight or even stillborn.
It’s best to mate rabbits only once, then wait to see if the female becomes pregnant. If she doesn’t, you can try again after a few weeks.
How to Tell if Your Rabbit is Pregnant
You might be asking if rabbits get pregnant every time they mate because your rabbit just finished mating and you want to know if you have to prepare for kittens. Here are five ways to tell if your rabbit is pregnant.
She Will Gain Weight
One of the earliest signs of pregnancy in rabbits is weight gain. A pregnant rabbit will eat more and her belly will begin to round out.
Her Appetite Will Increase
A pregnant rabbit will have a voracious appetite. She will eat more hay, fresh veggies, and pellets than usual.
Her Nipples Will Become Pinker and More Prominent
A pregnant rabbit’s nipples will become pinker and more pronounced as her body prepares for nursing.
She Will Build a Nest
A pregnant rabbit will begin to build a nest out of hay and other materials. This is where she will give birth and raise her kittens.
She Will Be Less Active
As her pregnancy progresses, a rabbit will become more lethargic and spend more time sleeping.
What to Do if Your Rabbit is Pregnant
If you think your rabbit is pregnant, the best thing to do is to take her to the vet for a checkup. The vet can confirm the pregnancy and help you care for your rabbit throughout her pregnancy. Once the pregnancy is confirmed, here are some steps to follow:
Diet Should Include Plenty of Hay, Fresh Veggies, and Water
Pregnant rabbits need plenty of hay, fresh veggies, and water to stay healthy. Make sure she has unlimited access to all three.
Exercise Should Be Limited
A pregnant rabbit should have limited exercise to avoid miscarriage. Avoid letting her jump or play too roughly.
Nesting Box Should Be Provided
A nesting box should be provided for the pregnant rabbit to build her nest. The nesting box should be filled with hay and other soft materials.
Don’t Let her Around Unneutered Males
During pregnancy, keeping your rabbit away from unneutered males is essential. The males could try to mate with her, which could cause stress and lead to miscarriage or a double pregnancy.
What to Do if Your Rabbit Isn’t Getting Pregnant
If you want to breed your rabbit but she isn’t getting pregnant, make sure you try different bucks since the problem could be on the bucks end. If the problem persists, take her to the vet to rule out any health problems.