Vet FAQ- Small animal, heat, pregnancy and castration

Small Animals, Heat Pregnancy Castration

Frequently asked questions about Heat, Pregnancy and Castration

  • My pet rabbit is probably pregnant. What do I have to consider during and after pregnancy?
  • At which intervals and lengths are rats on heat?

My pet rabbit is probably pregnant. What do I have to consider during and after pregnancy?

Question:
My pet rabbit is probably pregnant. She is building a nest and also has gained weight. What do I have to consider shortly before the birth? Can I clean the cage as usual? How long is the lactation period? When can the young animals be separated from the mother? Many thanks for answering my questions!

Answer:
Here’s a bit of data on the pregnancy of rabbits: Pregnancy lasts between 29 and 33 days. One to two days before the birth, the rabbit plucks fur from the tummy area and uses it and straw to build a nest. The litter normally has 2-8 young ones. These are blind, hairless and have no own heat regulation at birth. They are only suckled once a day for 3-5 minutes. They open their eyes after 8-10 days. They can be separated from the mother after 4-6 weeks. Take care that the rabbit has a sufficiently large cave (small house or similar) in which she can build the nest in the dark and out of sight. The animals should not be disturbed before birth and also not afterwards. If there is too much going on around the female, it can happen that she does no longer suckle the young or even eats them. I therefore advise you to clean the cage as usual but leave the nest with the young completely alone at all times. Also leave your rabbit absolutely alone so that she can devote herself to the young without distraction. The cage should not be too cold but also not stand too warm so that the small ones have an optimum ambient temperature.

At which intervals and lengths are rats on heat?

Question:
At which intervals does a rat girl (it is now two months old) get her period? How long does this last?

Answer:
Female rats are ready to mate when sexually mature (already at 6 weeks old) the whole year through. But the female is only old enough to breed at 65 to 110 days old. The female does not have a period comparable to humans but has a regular cycle of 4-5 days, however, shows no clear signs of being on heat. Ovulation occurs during mating, i.e. it is triggered only by the sexual act. If a female rat has a litter, she can be impregnated again 24 hours after giving birth.

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