Monday, July 28, 2014

Masks to clean the rabbit poop, pans and fans

This is a funny picture of my son, Dontavious and me getting ready to clean the rabbit shed. I thought it was cute to post it. The reason for the masks are because of allergens and Dontavious' history of asthma.

When we clean our shed two times a year, we do a complete scrubbing of the shed, cages, etc. This time, we only cleaned the poop, the pans, and the fans. This is enough to create dust that will agitate me or my son, and we always take precautions.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Summer Heat can be Deadly to rabbits

In past years I talked about the summer heat and how deadly it can be for any rabbit, especially the English Angora. Recently, there was a tragedy experienced by a fellow angora enthusiast due to the heat and a malfunctioning air conditioner. The horrific scene was four English Angoras, one a multiple winner, succumb to the unforgiving heat. Such a sad ordeal has been experienced by many other breeders, but when it is someone you know well, it hits close to home.

Thus far, the heat index in San Antonio has not reached the 100 mark. However, it is expected that next week we will experience 100 degrees days. It is imperative to remember to check the rabbit barn daily. True, we cannot be inside the barn 24/7 and, unfortunately, accidents will happen. However, we need to visit the shed daily as much as possible to check the temperature inside the barn, the fans and the a/c unit and ensure all are functioning properly.

I visit my rabbit in the morning before going to work and after I return from work in the evening. Right now, one of my sons is at home and I usually ask him mid-day to put in the frozen ice packs in the rabbit cages to ensure the rabbits get to rest and cool next to them.

The main thing one should do is always to:

  • Keep fresh water available. Check the water bottles to ensure they are clean and working properly.
  • Keep a fan going on to circulate the air and leave some open window or door to the shed to allow clean air to come in and out of the shed, especially if there is a malfunction in the shed.
  • If you have an air conditioner unit, keep it on timer to save electricity and to ensure it doesn't burn out.
  • If you have a misting system, make sure it is working properly
  • Use frozen tiles or ice packs in the cages so the rabbits can rest on or next to them.

There are many things one can do to keep their rabbits cool and comfortable, but mainly be vigilant at all times. I hope we all survive this summer without major issues or huge loses. Let's pray this year is not as hot as last.

Monday, July 21, 2014

If no shows, we head to the beach!

Here we are at the beach relaxing.

My son, Dontavious

Dontavious, John, Martin
My son, Martin

Friday, July 18, 2014

Betty Chu promoting the English Angora world wide

Long time fellow breeder and expert, Betty Chu, continues to promote the English Angora world wide.

Through out the years, Betty has been featured in magazines, videos, and now even an appearance on TV! By far, Betty is one of the most noticeable ambassador of the English Angora rabbit and is always eager to selflessly share her knowledge and expertise with people.

Visit the Northern California Angora Guild, a blog where Betty gives a lot of information about her experience and knowledge of raising English Angora rabbits, and most recently, raising some French Angoras. In addition, you will see posts about her fun and exciting experiences promoting this wonderful rabbit to the world.

Betty's blogging has been renowned for its beautiful pictures of her awesome and extremely fluffy English Angoras. 

Monday, July 14, 2014

Required by True Rabbit Breeders

Any serious rabbit breeder needs to have a copy of the ARBA Standard Of Perfection.

Very often, people go to Facebook or other sites and ask people questions that can easily be answered if they looked in the SOP. This nifty little book can be purchased through the ARBA Store website or your local vendor for a very small fee of $20.
I have two copies since I had misplaced my original one. I bought my first copy in Kansas from a vendor whose name I don't remember, but the recent one was purchased through at a local show.

For me, since I raise English Angora rabbits, I am specifically interested in pages 67-69; however, it is imperative to look at the Angora recognized colors, too. Overall, the book has so much information about all breeds to learn from.

I have been raising and showing Angoras since 2007, but I often refer back to these 3 little pages every time I am planning a breeding. It is imperative that before one breeds a rabbit, one needs to know the goal of said breeding and the expected outcome. These 3 pages can give you so much information and guidance as to what you seek and then you can decide if your stock is strong enough genetically to go ahead and begin this breeding.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Alpaca Handspun Yarn

I handspun alpaca fleece into yarn for a friend. I kept half of the fleece and she received half of it spun into yarn. Now, I just need to find time to spin my stash. 

Monday, July 7, 2014

Angora rabbits' wool used during Hitler's era

My good friend, Lil and I have been discussing about our fascination for the Angora breed and its origin. We are thinking about searching for articles, books, and other documents that could give us insight into the actual origin of the Angora rabbit.

We have not fully committed to said task; however, as I was briefly browsing through the internet seeking for some historical accurate documents or accounts of its original origin, I came about some interesting, yet disturbing articles and blogs about a Nazi plan to breed German Angora rabbits in concentration camps to harvest their wool and make warm garments for Hitler’s armed forces.
One of the articles cited this was information found in a “German archive. ‘Operation Munchkin’, as it was known , was the brainchild of sinister S.S. Chief Heinrich Himmler” (

There are several links I've included here to read information about this account:

Mail Online
PRX Piece Himmler's Angora
Wisconsin Historical Society  (on search add "angora")

Some of these sites have articles and pictures of German Angora rabbits, their housing, and so on. Unfortunately, some of the articles have pictures of English Angoras, which should not be there, but they are. 
Disclaimer: These sites are just added for information purposes. I do not take responsibility for their information, nor support their views or endorse them. I found these sites and thought it to be "thought provoking" and informational.

P. Ricardo Gonzalez