Saturday, November 10, 2018

Rabbit Books I Recommend

Anybody who knows me very well will tell you that I have shelves and shelves of books on many different subjects through out my home.  From encyclopedias, non-fiction, self-help, history and how-to all the way down to fiction such as: westerns, fantasy, futuristic, historical, romance, classical, mythology and even some poetry.

My very good friends will even tell you that there is a stack of ten to twenty books on the night stand next to my bed that I am in the middle of reading, and another couple of smaller stacks on the chest under my bedroom window that I was reading and took a pause from or plan to read next.  My plan to read them all, maybe even all at the same time.  I just plan to read them all very, very slowly.

I am also a research and learn a little bit before you start type of person once in a while and with rabbits that was definitely the case.  Mostly because I really wanted to have them long before we were ready to or had the space we needed to have them.  And it was a good thing we waited too.  Otherwise I would have had to figure out how to move them from a rental home to a our home on a 1/4 acre lot in Utah across the country to Oklahoma and into a hotel for 4 weeks before finally moving into the home we are in now that sits on 5 acres.

So I bought a couple of books, and checked out many more from the library and read.  I read and I kept reading at first not knowing which ones where full of less than stellar information and which ones were worth keeping on my shelves.  Now that I am several months into the trenches though and several years into the readings I definitely have some books that I will be keeping in my personal library and would recommend so anyone interested in learning more about rabbits.

Storey's Guide to Raising Rabbits by: Bob Bennett

Okay, I know there are many mixed opinions on this book and I will agree that some of the information is a little outdated when it comes to nutrition.  The other thing I really wish it had was color photo's of the rabbit breeds in the back.  There is a section which introduces you to some of the breeds of rabbits and the photo's are all in black in white.  That being said it is an excellent resource that I keep coming back to again and again.  It covers the basics about rabbits and it covers them well, with things like breeding, cages sizes & equipment, how to pick a breed and purchasing good foundation stock.  Anyone interested in raising rabbits will learn something new and valuable reading this book.

Beyond the Pellet: Feeding Rabbits Naturally by: Boyd Craven Jr. & Rick Worden

This is a slim little volume that I bought to help fill in the nutritional gaps from Storey's Guide and because I wanted to know what kinds of natural from the garden treats I could give my rabbits on a daily, or semi-daily basis.  While I didn't feel that the book slim as it was went into a lot of depth on nutrition and providing a balanced diet, it did do a good job of helping me know what was safe to feed my rabbits and what to steer clear of.  You can find the author's facebook page here.

I also read their first book Backyard Meat Rabbits: The Urban Rabbit Project Volume I and I found it very vague and not as useful as I had hoped especially if you have read Storey's Guide.

The Rabbit-Raising Problem Solver: All Your Questions Answered about: Housing, Feeding, Behavior, Health Care, Breeding and Kindling by: Karen Patry

This book is set up as page after page of question and answer.  The questions are broken up into catagories and it isn't something you are going to pick up and read in an afternoon.  However, it is a great reference to have on hand, because when something comes up you can flip to that section and scan the questions until to find the one that applies and read through the answer.  I spent a month or so carrying this book around in my purse because I could pull it out waiting in line or a doctor's office waiting room and read a few questions and there was always a quick and easy stopping point to pause and go on with whatever you had been waiting for.  Definitely worth a place on your shelf and the time it takes to read it.

The American Rabbit Breeder's Association's Standard of Perfection 2016-2020

This spiral bound book is published by the ARBA every five years and is a must have for anyone wanting to raise and sell or show, high quality pedigree rabbits.  When I went to see my first breeder and even my first show several people recommended that I spend the money and get a copy of this book so I would be able to understand my breed of rabbit better.  They were all right.  It has helped a great deal in evaluating rabbits I am considering purchasing as well as new litters of rabbits we have raised.  I really can't recommend this book enough.

The American Rabbit Breeder's Association's Official Guide Book: Raising Better Rabbits & Cavies

Okay, okay so here I am just a little bit guilty.  This book is on the top of my stack sitting on my nightstand.  I ordered it from the ARBA the same time that I ordered my copy of the Standard of Perfection and I am not finished reading it yet.  It has been interesting though learning a little bit about the history of the ARBA and I enjoyed the more complete breed section in this book compared to Storey's Guide.  There is some much in this book that I am looking forward to reading more of it each day that I get the opportunity.  I especially enjoyed the section on breeding rabbits and genetics.  So although I haven't finished it yet, it is another book I recommend rabbit keepers have on their shelves and read.

So there it is.  My list of recommended reading isn't a terribly long list but it is a place to start.  I hope that this helps those of you who are looking for a place to start learning more about rabbits.  Do you know of a book that I missed?  A book that is a must read and a keeper when it comes to rabbit raising and care?  Leave me the title in the comments below.  I am always looking for another good book to read.

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