I took a pair of electric clippers to the rabbits today! Rabbits are NOT easy to raise, especially angoras. The grooming needs of seven long-haired rabbits got away from me in the last month, and it just isn’t right to let them get tangles or mats. So in spite of my goal to hand-pluck their wool (because that fetches the best price), I decided to purchase a set of clippers and buzz them down at least this once.
So I grabbed the first rabbit, set her on my lap, and went to work. First I buzzed off any fur that was tangled or matted. Then I clipped the fur a little shorter around the genital area (I haven’t gotten any litters lately, I was wondering if excessively long hair were perhaps preventing mating). Then I plucked whatever loose wool was still on her. After that I neatened up the areas I had clipped so the length was more even. And then I looked at the rabbit…
She was bald from her ribcage to her tail!
Well, nothing I could do about it now. I didn’t expect her to look great, but I didn’t realize she’d have such a single large area that ended up cut off. It won’t hurt her, her hutch is protected from the weather and the temperature is nice this time of year. It just looks funny. I put her back in the cage, and picked up the next rabbit. I buzzed off any fur that was tangled or matted. I clipped the genital area, plucked the loose wool, and neatened up the clipped area.
And again I had a bunny bald from his ribcage to his tail.
What is it with that tangle pattern? I knew there were tangles on the legs, because they like to play in their water dishes and get their legs all wet. And tangles near their rumps, because I used to have them too close together and they’d paw at each other. But tangles on their tails? Tangles on their spines? And identical tangles on two rabbits? Each rabbit looked different on top, but when I followed the tangles down to the skin, it was always in the same places.
So I tried a third. Yep, another bare-butted bunny. It’s a popular tangle pattern, obviously!
It took over two hours to shave those three rabbits, so I have four more to do later. It won’t surprise me if they all end up the same – long haired shoulders, but shaved down on their rumps. I’m glad they don’t have mirrors in their hutches!
Guess I won’t win any awards for being a rabbit barber any time soon. But they do look really, really funny!