Do rabbits change gender often?
I went to the vet yesterday with my male Netherlands dwarf rabbit, and I was told he's actually a girl. Does this happen to a lot of people, or should I be concerned about the integrity of the pet store I got the bunny at?
Also, should I change the rabbit's name from "Frederick" to something more feminine?
Wow, people are rude on Answers.
- Apollo RulesLv 510 years agoFavorite Answer
Even vets can make mistakes. Most breeders can tell the sex of their rabbits as early as 3 weeks old just from doing it so often. The reason that mistakes are made is because they are sexed by inexperienced people who may push to hard. It is more common to have a supposed doe turn to a buck. Some rabbits are born with a form of genetic hermaphroditism that is essentially nothing more than a split penis. When these rabbits are young they can be mistaken as does because the split looks like the slit on a female. An experienced vet, breeder etc. can usually tell the difference at a young age because the slit is wider at the base where it would normally be narrow.
Since your rabbit turned from a buck to a doe rather than the other way around I suspect that it was just an inexperienced person that sexed it. Mistakes do happen and even the most experienced rabbit breeders can be wrong on occasion. Even some of the most experienced rabbit vets will call a young rabbit a probable buck or doe because they know that at very young ages it is difficult to tell. After 8 weeks of age unless they have a split penis it is very easy to identify the sex. Your rabbit was either sold to early or the person who sexed it did not check it again before it was sold.
The rabbit doesn't care what its name is. All it cares about is that you clean its litter box, feed it healthy food, let it get lots of play time and love it. If the name bothers you then by all means change it. We have lots of bunnies with names that don't match their gender. Mostly because my 4 year old names them and she doesn't really care if they are boys or girls.
Have fun with your bunnySource(s): CVT - ARBA member and show breeder
- LeisaLv 44 years ago
If you're keeping them confined to a cage for a length of time then maybe this isn't the right time to get a rabbit, they need a lot of space all the time - a cage always open with access to a secure puppy pen "run" is best - then you will have room for a litter tray. Small rabbits are VERY active and need constant places to roam, flop and run about. Keeping a pair confined to a cage will lead to some bored, obese, depressed rabbits who may even turn on one another due to cramped confines. I have never seen an indoor cage sold for rabbits that is actually big enough for rabbits! The majority are even too small for hamsters. In fact the smaller ones sold as rabbit cages are actually more the size a Syrian Hamster should have. You should spot clean pees and poops at least twice a day anyway. Hay should be refreshed at least once or twice a day too. Clean bunnies are happy bunnies!
- Anonymous10 years ago
Pet stores are notoriously awful at sexing rabbits. The employees (and owners) rarely know how to do so properly. They also rarely know anything about rabbits, at all.
Obviously rabbits do not change genders (and I'm sure you know that), but they are commonly incorrectly identified by pet store people. This one of the many reasons buying from a breeder is a better option.Source(s): rabbits breeder 15+ years http://www.blueribbonrabbitry.com
- 10 years ago
You just made a mistake. The lack of testicles after 5 months should have been a clue. Your bunny's been a female since the chromosome pair determined that early in the fetal bunny's development before it was born. It will never change.
You could call her Frederika, Freddie, Freida... I'm quite sure she wouldn't mind if you called her Princess Jemilla, Jem for short, or Anna, Duchess of Wonderland. Rabbits are easy that way.
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- Anonymous10 years ago
The pet shop made a mistake. Don't worry - it happens far more often than rabbits changing their sex.
And no - the answers here aren't rude - slightly sarcastic in this instance.
- 10 years ago
Ahh yes the Gender Fairy! :)
I have been working with rabbits for awhile...and even I get taken now and again!
We have a black mini lop...named Daphne!
We had her to the vet at 6 weeks for a wellness check up...and she was sexed.
We went for our pre-surge appointment to make sure she was fit for surgery...and again the vet confirmed her sex.
She was sent for her spay at 6 months of age...and the day of the surgery they did a once over before the surgery and again---checked her sex! Two vets this time!
Long story shorter...she was NOT a she...she was a he!
He has a split penis...looks very very much like a vulva!
And since we had been calling her/him Daphne for 6 months...he refused to answer to anything else and eventually we just left his name as is!
Poor boy had to wait till his sutures healed...about 4 weeks...by that time his testicles had finally dropped...and he had to go back to the vet again...but for a neuter this time! LOL :D
And our vet sexed him again...one more time...just in case!
I think Fredrick is a wonderful name!
Fred is the name of a female character from the TV show Angel...Winifred is the long form!Source(s): *owned by 10 bunns* www.ontariorabbits.org www.rabbitsonline.net
- 4 years ago
I have a doe(Pearl) who has had 8 litters. Last week when I put her with my male I thought she was going to kill him before I could get them apart. Yesterday her cage mate delivered a littler, she(Caitlin) has not seen the male since November. And upon looking, she( Pearl) now has testicles. Anyone want to explain that?
- dumplingmuffinLv 710 years ago
a rabbit cant change sex,but the pet shop got it wrong,very commonSource(s): nurse
- 10 years ago
rabbits do not change their gender