|Choosing Your Agility Bunny|
|You would like to start training for rabbit agility! That's great! First, you need a rabbit. You may already have a bunny, or you may be shopping for a new bunny just for agility. Either way, you will have lots of fun!
If you already have a rabbit, the first thiings to consider are his age and condition. While rabbits are never to old to learn, some of them become more sedentary as they age, and will not be as active as you might like.
|If your house rabbit runs and "binkies" across the floor, or leaps on and off the furniture, you have a good agility candidate. If he wants to sit in your lap and watch TV. . .well, maybe this is not his specialty. An outdoor rabbit would be judged by a similar criteria. When he is out for exercise, does he run and leap? Is he nosy, and into everything? If so, he is a good agility candidate. If he just sits in the sun, or flattens out and worries, this may not be the ideal sport for him.|
|You say you don't have a bunny, or the one you have isn't a good candidate? Then we go on to searching for a prospect. Adopting a rabbit from a Humane Society is a great idea. You can spend time with it to lean about it's personality, it may well already be house trained. These rabbits usually come spayed or neutered also, which is an asset if you are adding a second bunny. You will have no concerns about surprise litters. There are also rescue groups for rabbits who have many available. They will be able to tell you all about your new prospect, and again, these rabbits are usually spayed or neutered.|
|The other choice is to raise a baby. If you choose this option, please buy from a breeder. Pet store bunnies are nearly always breeders culls sold at inflated prices. Also, they are often sold too young, as tiny bunnies sell better. Some of the issues won't matter for an agility rabbit, such as wrong color or markings, but others, such as a bad bite can be big issues. Buying from a breeder lets you see the parents, and the care they have been given. A bunny should be at least 6 weeks old when you bring it home. Eight to 12 weeks is ideal. Breeders can be contacted at rabbit shows, or you can often find them through the American Rabbit Breeders Association (ARBA)|
|When you look at the litter, see which bunnies come right up to cautiously explore you. We call these bunnies the Mighty Explorers, and they are the type that make good agility prospects. The ones that hide in the back of the cage may work out, but you will have to work hard to overcome this nervousness.
Choose several explorer bunnies that appeal to you, and start to go over their conformation. The breeder may be a lot of help to you here. Good conformation for the breed is good conformation for soundness. You want good shoulders, a good arch to the back, good, muscular hindquarters, and straight legs. Correct head shape for the breed will help you avoid problems with improper bite, though a narrow head on a blocky headed breed is not a serious fault. You can safely ignore faults or disqualifications that have to do with color or markings, this will allow you more choices.