At A Glance
Title: The Rabbit-Raising Problem Solver
Author: Karen Patry
Publisher: Storey Publishing
Release Date: April 2014
Cover Price: $19.95
Target Audience: Pet rabbit owners and livestock farmers with rabbit husbandry questions; anyone interested in owning rabbits for meat, fur, fancy or fun
Let’s not mince words: Rabbit-keeping is on the rise. Karen Patry, longtime Rex rabbit breeder and author of The Rabbit-Raising Problem Solver, notes that rabbits are becoming more popular as pets and livestock animals worldwide, but particularly in the U.S.
“In the United States, the locavore movement, combined with a shaky economy and a desire to know where one’s meat comes from, is spawning a rising tide of micro-homesteaders and survivalists who choose to raise their own meat,” Patry says. “Rabbits are a logical choice as they are easy to keep in smaller spaces.”
This sudden boom of rabbit interest has led to many brand-new keepers with a lot of husbandry questions, and while there’s certainly no shortage of information available online, in books and from fellow rabbit aficionados, it can difficult to find the answer quickly to a specific question. Patry has capitalized on this with The Rabbit-Raising Problem Solver, putting concise, easy-to-find answers to a variety of rabbit-raising questions into readers’ hands.
Designed as a troubleshooting guide and featuring hundreds of questions organized by topic, including housing, feeding, behavior, breeding and kindling, Patry’s book is the one you’ll find yourself turning to when husbandry questions of all types arise. Instead of poring over chapters of books on rabbit kindling and sifting through endless Google searches in an attempt to find a reputable source explaining why your pregnant doe is running around her cage with a mouthful of hay, the question is succinctly and helpfully answered in the chapter on pregnant rabbits. (This rabbit is just building a nest box for herself, and she’ll likely give birth to kits in a few days.)
Patry runs Raising-Rabbits.com, where she’s the guru on all things rabbit husbandry. This authoritative spills over into her book, lending all her answers an air of hard-won expertise—when she writes about losing rabbits to toxic treats or kindling “glitches,” you know her information is coming from legitimate past experience.
The Rabbit-Raising Problem Solver doesn’t just focus on one type of rabbit, either: Patry includes information on rabbits raised for meat, fur, show and even just as pets. As she writes in the preface, “This book contains answers for owners and raisers of all types of rabbits. Meat or fiber rabbits need the same basic care as family pets, because a rabbit is a rabbit no matter what the purpose.” She doesn’t just stick to surface questions, either: Her book covers material helpful to prospective rabbit owners and long-time breeders alike. She dives deep into breeding and kindling, discussing the mechanics of mating, how to encourage your rabbits to breed and what to do if your rabbit gives birth to a large litter. Diagrams and illustrations help solidify readers’ understanding—which is particularly helpful in the section on sexing young bunnies less than 12 weeks of age, as rabbit genders don’t begin to differ in appearance until then.
If you’re considering rabbits or have already made the leap into bunny husbandry, let Karen Patry be your guide to these versatile animals. She’ll either reinforce the practices you already have in place or teach you how to handle any situation your rabbits bring to the table.
The Final Word: If you’re new to keeping rabbits, it’s highly recommended to pick up a copy of The Rabbit-Raising Problem Solver; it’ll be dog-eared and worn before you know it.
For more information on raising rabbits, check out:
- 5 Rabbit Illnesses to Know
- 5 Questions to Ask When Buying Rabbits
- Using Rabbit Manure
- How to Make Money Selling Rabbit at the Farmers’ Market
- Outdoor Rabbit Housing Options