Walking Wounded

One of the kits decided to cop an attitude today when I went to take them from the tractor and put them back into their cage. It did not want to go back into the cage and decided to slash my wrist with its back paws to show me just how much it did not want to go back into the cage. I thought I’d spare you the before shot of my wrist, but needless to say that instead of just looking like a person with a cutting problem, I now look like a person who tried to slit her wrist. It was fun taking the photo with my left hand.

I need to get some of those things that falconers use on their arms. You wouldn’t think that a rabbit just shy of 8 weeks old could do so much damage with its claws. Actually, maybe that is one of the first things I can make with the rabbit hides, a set of gauntlets to protect my arms from claws. And one for my son, too. It would be more than a little appropriate. Usually these guys are very gentle. I don’t know why it had a bee in its bonnet today.

The husband and I are looking at other options for slaughtering the rabbits next time. We have a little over six weeks to go. Since it has been 11.5 weeks since we ordered our Rabbit Wringer and it still has not come despite constant assurances that he’ll send it out by the end of the week for several weeks now, we are trying to find something else besides the pellet gun. We don’t want to use it again. We saw one thing where a guy drove a ten inch pole barn nail at an angle into a 4 by 4 post and used it as a wringer the same way as the Rabbit Wringer. So we’re thinking about that. Only problem is we don’t have a 4 by 4 post, so we’d have to buy one, dig the hole, sink it, fill it with concrete and then hope it was stable enough for what we’d like to do.

I am really liking the rabbit tractors we built on the 4th. It is so nice to just open the lid and step inside the tractor when there is a recalcitrant rabbit and just scoop it up. Lola likes to hide in the far corner, but I can just walk up to her and pick her up now. Same with Leo, who doesn’t hide, but has no interest in ever coming out of his tractor. I’ll try to get photos of the new tractors up this week and also get the husband to get me the hutch frame information that I’ve been waiting on for weeks.

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5 thoughts on “Walking Wounded

  1. Sorry about your arm! I could tell you how we learned it in our rabbit processing class, but in typing it I realized it was a big graphic. Let me know! Rather simple, though–a pipe, hooks for hanging, and a knife.

    I didn’t do the actual killing, but the butchering was certainly easy enough.

    • LuckyRobin says:

      I’ve seen the pipe method done. In the class we took the guy didn’t do it right the first time and the rabbit screamed. It took him a couple of whacks to get the right spot. My husband doesn’t want to do that. The butchering part is the simpler part. We’ve got that down. It’s just the killing that is hard. We want it to be more humane.

      • I fully understand that. I think the guy we did it with had done it for so long that he knew to hit the right spot–every time. I think we watched him butcher about 20 rabbits, without any problems.

        At any rate, I’m sure you’ll figure out a good way. I heard of the rabbit wringer from your blog, and it does sound like a great way to do it–but not if it’s been this much of a hassle for you to get it!

  2. Mary @ HomegrownontheHill says:

    Oh man! Yes, I think an arm guard would be a good a investment. I wouldn’t have thought they’d be like that either. I’m guessing he really didn’t want to go back in his cage today? Hope you heal up soon! I can’t wait to see your tractors! Fuzzy had her babies finally! 31 days and she had 9! I’ve checked on them for the last two days and so far everyone is good. There are a couple small ones I’m worried about but so far are still holding their own. 🙂

    • LuckyRobin says:

      No, he really didn’t. I’ll try to remember to take a photo of the new tractors tomorrow. I’m usually so fuzzy-headed when I go out in the morning to feed and water the animals I don’t always think to grab the camera.

      If you are worried that a couple of the kits are not nursing you can force nurse. Hold the Mama rabbit with her belly exposed (this may take two people) and then hold the kit to the nipple. It knows what to do. It only needs to nurse for a couple of minutes. I’d only do it if you feel like the baby isn’t getting any nourishment, because the Mama will not be happy about being held in place. Here’s a vid that shows how:

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