Kalia likes the camera very much. She thinks that all photos should be close ups. She is such a sweet rabbit. I am glad we decided to keep her as a pet. She is a comforting presence. Especially today. The second baby kit succumbed to the illness. We spent a lot of time trying to get her through it. She was eating about 1/4 tsp of the Critical Care and drinking about 1/2 a tsp of water every three hours, and she was pretty active up until the last feed, but she was losing weight. She died during the night. I didn’t think she would live, but I still had a little bit of irrational hope.
There are a couple of things I am taking away from this. One is that treatment needs to be started at the first sign of diarrhea, but usually by that time it is too late. Two is that I shouldn’t give fodder to the mother during the week that the kits transition from milk to hay and pellets. I will switch to giving the mother kale or chard during that time period, or feeding her fodder when she is out of her cage.
So from two litters of a combined fourteen kits we are now down to ten, five with Phoebe and five with Andromeda. I am hoping and praying that there will be no more death for a while. All of the remaining kits are very robust and active and there are no signs of illness. Large litters are more drama than I want to deal with. I am going to limit the bucks to two successful breedings per doe from now on. I think I’d much rather have litters of six kits that survive than litters of nine kits where some don’t.
I’ve spent some time in Ecclesiastes this morning seeking comfort. The first part of Chapter 3 seems to have been written for the farmer/homesteader.
1 To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
2 A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
3 A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;
4 A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
5 A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
6 A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
7 A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
8 A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.