You may be having a female rabbit and do not know that it is pregnant. Rabbit is very good at hiding their condition. We called a female rabbit as a doe. Besides illness, the does can hide its pregnancies quite well. It is very difficult to determine if a doe is pregnant or not. Getting some information about rabbit physiology and how to make sure for signs of its pregnancy are the first step for the owners or beginners before they get the does. Any 5 ways to know that your doe is pregnant. It will give many advantages if they are trying to breed rabbits or have lately adopted a doe and guess it may be pregnant. This information will help you to plan and prepare for your rabbit’s future.
How can you determine if your doe is pregnant?
1. Finding Out “the Grapes or Marble-Shaped” in the Abdomen
A doe that is pregnant does not change its behavior much. A doe gets a bit self-assertive when it is pregnant. On the other hand, some of does that are pregnant still be as energetic as like it has not been pregnant, including jumping and doing binkies (jump and twist in the air).
You can find out your doe’s abdomen gently using the fingers. To palpate, grasp the eras and the skin over the shoulders using the right hand. Place the left hand between the hind legs, slightly in front of the pelvis, with the thumb on the right side and the fingers on the left side of the abdomen. Pressure and move the fingers and thumb gently backward and forward. If the doe is pregnant, you must be able to feel embryos inside its abdomen. Each embryo is like the size of a grape or marble-shaped. Handle the doe gently and use only light pressure on the abdominal cavity. Accurate determination of pregnancy by palpation takes practice. Palpate the doe a week later to double check, if you are inexperienced and diagnose the doe is not pregnant. If you are not familiar with this situation and condition, do not hesitate to take your doe to the vet. The vet will inspect to know your doe is pregnant or not.
2. The Weight Increases
Every animal is like the human. Its weight will increase during the pregnancy. The owner may also not notice any much increase in food to take in the pregnant doe. The best way to observe a doe’s pregnancy by weight is using an accurate digital scale and estimating the similarity of the weight before the doe became pregnant.
During the first week of pregnancy, the average of a pregnant doe gains 0.029 kg (about 0.064 lbs). When the end of the second week, a pregnant doe, on average, gains 0.057 kg (0.126 lbs) and the doe’s weight will be not large after the second week.
3. Using an Ultrasound
Ultrasonography has been extensively operated for the identification of a pregnancy from its symptoms in domestic animals. The best and 100% accurate method for detecting the pregnancy of a doe is conducting an ultrasound. The vet can show an ultrasound fast and precisely determine the doe’s pregnancy.
The ultrasonography test of the doe’s uterus is showed transcutaneously. The position of the probe (a small device for testing pregnancy) is externally against the abdominal wall. To get an optimal image, it is obligatory, that the space between the probe and the doe’s skin is free of air. Due to this reason, the ventral abdomen of the doe is clipped and ultrasound scanning gel is applied at the test site. The total time required for the sonographic examination proceeds (restraint, clipping, and examination) does not more 5 to 10 minutes.
The differential diagnosis would be useful to constitute a difference between an embryonic vesicle and a ball of feces. It has the similarity in shape and size. The diameter of embryonic vesicle ranges from 10.5 to 13 mm on the 9th day and 10 to 20 mm on the 10th day. On the other hand, feces usually have a diameter between 13 and 20 mm.
4. Learning About the Doe’s Life Cycles
Getting some information from internet and books or consult with the vet is one of 5 ways to know that your doe is pregnant. The sexual maturity of rabbits happens between 3 and 6 months of age. The does can become pregnant as early as 12 weeks of age. Due to the health and safety of the does, this condition is not recommended.
If a doe which is younger than 12 weeks of age, it most probably is not pregnant. In whatever way, if a doe falls within the 3 to 6 months of age, on the range, it may have reached sexual maturity. There is a possibility that it could be pregnant. In addition, if a doe is older than 2 to 3 years of age, in this case, a doe most probable is not pregnant. It may be too old to become pregnant.
5. Looking for the Sign in the Nest
The doe has an innate pattern of behavior to construct a nest when being pregnant. A pregnant doe will cover the inside surface of the nest or into the litter box with fur and hay. It will become intended to protect its nest. If your doe has a nesting behavior like this, it means a sign that your doe may be pregnant.
Some does have an experience with a false pregnancy. The doe shows a nesting behavior, but the doe is not really pregnant. Based on this case, a nest building is not an accurate indicator to determine pregnancy. It does only suggest the maternal instinct. Put its collection of furs or hays into the new nest box. Add more hays and papers outside of the nest box. If the doe does not have babies a week after collecting furs or hays, you can assume if your doe is not pregnant.
Early pregnancy diagnosis and determination it does is needed in selecting or rebreeding of the unproductive does with the attainable amount necessary postpone. 5 ways to know that your doe is pregnant above make due preparation a valuable tool in the selection of does for enlarged fecundity and selecting of non-productive does. It is also useful to detect fetal numbers because it can help in the proper planning of management practices and the nutritional plan to be adopted in relation to the nutrient requirement for accurate fetal growth. In addition, it will also help maternal requirement in proportion to the stage of pregnancy and fetal numbers.