Monday, July 30, 2012

Betty Has Even More Great Angora Tips

Inside the latest issue of Domestic Rabbit is an informative article about judging English Angora rabbits written by Betty Chu. 

She follows up with the Northern California Angora Guild blog post where Betty gives even more insight into judging EAs.  

Each article serves as an excellent stand alone piece.  However, both read together give an even more rounded view of judging these beautiful rabbits.  

I even learned a little more Angora-ese! 

Check out Betty's NCAG post here.  

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Making My Own Standard Operating Procedure

With ARBA's recent Recommendations for the Care of Rabbits and Cavies, came the suggestion to create our own SOP for our rabbit herds.   So what is an SOP?  Well, it can mean many things to many people and I decided to do a little research about this. Being a former soldier, I was very familiar with Army SOPs. The military revolves around these things, which are usually called Standing Operating Procedures. They end up meaning almost the same thing...a written guide to what you're supposed to do and how you're supposed to do it. 

Although I did not have an official herd management SOP, I have always kept a Rabbit Log where I jotted down notes about each rabbit as I went through my daily chores.  This comes from my days as an animal care technician.  We had SOPs at the animal lab, too.  They were huge books that spelled out how to do everything from clean a cage to emergency scientific animal laboratories were where I went to find my SOP models.

After checking out quite a few complex standards, I found a simpler SOP that fit my needs. I was not trying to write War and Peace. I don't have time for that. I was just trying to find a short document that filled my needs and hit on major herd care points.  The nice thing was that I could write my SOP to meet my particular herd needs. I can make revisions later, too...if what I originally documented does not work or my herd's needs change.

I have a copy of my draft SOP here. You are welcome to use it to adapt for your own rabbit herd management. Since we all keep rabbits in our own way, please adopt for your own circumstances and practices.  Also, if I left out something important, please let me know. It's a work in progress.

  Thanks to my source for a simple SOP - the Frederick National Lab for Cancer Research at Fort Detrick, Maryland.

Monday, July 16, 2012

TARC Webinar was fun...and a success!

Technology is wonderful! I'm so excited about being able to communicate with folks around our state (and beyond). I really enjoyed our first webinar and, to be honest, I wasn't sure how everything would go off.  I knew we were working hard, but sometimes you just don't know if things will pan out the way you envisioned.  

We had 9 attendees from all over Texas and Louisiana who were engaged, asking questions, and learning. Sasha put on an excellent presentation with help from her bunny models, Candy and FooFoo.  There was time to discuss things that we never get a chance to discuss at a show, or even when just visitng. The whole thing went without any major glitches and I'm sure that everyone got something out of it (including me).   Our attendees asked excellent questions and even gave some good, supportive advice too.  I have to say that our first webinar was a success!

The Texas Angora Rabbit Club hopes to expand our webinars as part of our plan to educate others in our state about our favorite rabbits...Angoras.  

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

French Toast is a Satin Angora

My youngest daughter has a new friend; thanks to our wonderful friend Lara! He is a beautiful black tortoiseshell Satin Angora rabbit. He was sheared when we came to us. His beautiful satiny coat had the appearance of French, Louie became French Toast Louie. 

Kiki has a lot of fun with him.  I was a bit worried about her taking care of an Angora which was one reason we were making her pay for her own rabbit...but the Satin Angora seems right up her alley.  

She helps me with my English, but she's not enamored with them like I am.  She sure seems smitten with French Toast, though.  He hangs out in her room; she feeds, waters, and cleans without any reminders; and she even dares to violate the "no animals on the couch" rule.

 I fuss about it, but really, I am happy to see she has a buddy.  He's very people focused and has such a great personality.  If only he'd help her dirty laundry make it from her room to the laundry basket!

Thanks, Lara (for thinking of us) and Dana (whose breeding program created Louie)!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Angora 101 Webinar July 14th
The Texas Angora Rabbit Club's webinar entitled Angora 101 is set for this Saturday, July 14th from 9:00am to 10:30am. Everyone has been working hard to make it a success. Our presenter will be Sasha, our current TARC President.  Sasha shows English and Satin Angora rabbits here in Texas and nationally.  She was very instrumental in helping me get started showing rabbits.  I always learn something when she's around.  

The webinar is designed to help people who do not have an Angora rabbit yet, but would like to learn more about them...and also those might already have an Angora rabbit, but are new to Angoras.  They do have a few slots left, so it is still possible to to sign up.  The webinar is free to TARC members.  There is a $5 fee for non-members.  It's only $5 to join TARC so just join and get any of the future TARC webinars for free. Click here to register. 

Monday, July 2, 2012


Oh yes, it's hot outside, but the boys (and the one little girl) keep growing their wool inside our cooler bunny room. The kits have changed so much.  They are now 11 weeks old.  I really like how they are developing, but as with everything else rabbit.'s always a work in progress. 

I still haven't found our camera bag from our, now not so recent, move.  I haven't completely given up hope, I refuse to buy another charger just yet.  Although, I really miss the great pictures I get when I have that camera.  For now, I have to settle for mediocre camera phone pics. 

All of the juniors are so laid back. I just love their little personalities.  The doe is particularly sweet...too bad she's not a recognized color. Although, I have thought about keeping her for my pearl line. Time will tell.  I've been working with all of them...getting them used to the blower, etc. I am excited about the fall shows.  Here's to hoping that everyone keeps on developing well!     

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