Angora rabbits like any other domestic rabbit need their nails clipping regularly. It is hard to see the nails though due to their wool and furnishings. However, one of the best times time clip the nails is during coat clipping as part of an all over maintenance and health check.
This year we have had to cancel our Swindon Stock Show and AGM twice now due to Covid 19. So a decision was made to hold a virtual show with the judge still being Sarah Elliott. The show date was Sunday 14th June 2020 with closing dates for entries on the 11th June at 6pm.
So if you are feeling like you need some Angora bunny time then check out the entries and winners below and details of the virtual show. Thank you to everyone who helped organise the virtual event and for all those who entered and joined in with the lockdown spirit and for allowing us to publish your beautiful bunny photos online.
Although Woolfest has been cancelled in Cockermouth this year, it has moved online. There will be a virtual Woolfest, Woolfest Online 2020 on Friday 26th and Saturday 27th June. Do visit the Woolfest Online 2020 Facebook page.
The National Angora Club will be there, selling our wool (we hope) and letting people know about our lovely rabbits. If craft members have never been to Woolfest, then take a look! Well worth visiting in person next year.
It is important for baby Angora rabbits once they start to eat hard food and greens for themselves to be able to offer them a wide variety of suitable food types to ensure they have that balanced diet and grow up to be healthy. Check out a previous post on feeding for more details.
We have a few masks if anyone would like to buy one. There are two types at the moment. They are made from 100% cotton (outer) and 100% silk (inner). They are one size and cost £6 each to National Angora Club (NAC) Members. Postage £1 within the UK. If you would like one please contact Sally May via the NAC Facebook page or via e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
The National Angora Club are often contacted by people who have bought or rescued a fluffy rabbit, and have been told that it is an Angora. Even the Rabbit Welfare Association may be mistaken, as their Winter 2017 magazine shows. Their article on Angora rabbits pictured 1 Angora, 2 Lionheads and a possible Cashmere Lop. The Club are willing to offer help to people struggling with their rabbit’s coats, but please be warned! Crossbreed fluffy rabbits often have coats that are very hard to care for, matting easily. If you wish for a long haired rabbit, think very carefully of the work involved. Obtain your rabbit from a reputable breeder, who will give life long support, and clipping and grooming lessons before you take your rabbit home. YouTube is not enough!
The National Angora Club had stands at two craft festivals in July and August this year. Fibre-East took place at Redbourne School, Ampthill, Bedford on 27th July, after a very hot week. Thankfully the temperature dropped so it was safe to bring Cheyenne, the Smoke Angora.
Anne demonstrated spinning pure Angora on the wheel, whilst Lesley taught spindle spinning.
It must be understood that this is a completely natural process in the rabbit, whereby part of the food intake is re-ingested, and goes through the digestive channels for a second time. There are two types of droppings; hard, dry glossy, round pure waste ones, that are passed regularly throughout the day; and the small soft dark faeces (called caecotrophs) that are formed in clusters, and enclosed in a coating of gel mucus. These caecotrophs are taken direct from the anus and swallowed whole; consequently, wire floors do not interfere with this action. Re-ingestion occurs mostly at night, unobserved. Caecotrophy is a vital function in the rabbits complicated digestive system.
Deprivation of these caecotrophs will cause diminished health. The owner has reason to be slightly worried if groups of these are found on the hutch floor in the mornings. It can occur in an obese animal, or , for any reason that prevents the rabbit being able to sit up, and bend its head right down between the hind legs in order to reach the anus. There can be an excess of caecotrophs if the diet is too high in protein, carbohydrates and sugar; the remedy is to cut down on the over rich feed, and to introduce a high fibre diet with plenty of hay; a small amount of green food; a slice of apple daily; and a restricted measured amount of pellet / corn / mix.
Angora rabbits can get ill and one illness to be aware of is Encephalitozoon Cuniculi. It is common and 52% of healthy domestic rabbits have it. They are not sure currently if it is a fungi or protozoa. Spores are passed through urine and can affect the nervous system and kidneys. In a post mortem the kidneys have walled off appearances with white spots.
The main symptoms include cataracts, head tilt, off food, lethargic, renal failure, seizures and blood in urine.
This problem is also a risk to immunocompromised humans.
If this is suspected them the environment will need disinfecting and the rabbit treated with an anti-inflamatory such as Meloxican and 28 days on Panacur.