By request, we are posting some detailed recommendations for supplies that would be good to have if you are just starting out and don't know where to start. Keep in mind that there are many options. These are just some that we're familiar with. And these recommendations are for meat rabbits like NZW's, Californians, American Blues, etc.
We are very big fans of Klubertanz products (www.Klubertanz.com). We really like their products, quality and price.
The following are some of our recommendations:
For the cages, get either 30" Deep x 36" wide x 18" high or 30"x30"x18 for the does. H-Series, all metal cages w/ 14 ga wire, Glavanized AFTER wire (after weld) with Baby-saver sides (CODE M)
Then 30"x30"x18" or 30"x24"x18 for bucks. Same as above but without the baby-saver sides (CODE A)
We always get the side by side cages (if you get 30"x30"x18", then it's 30" deep x 60" wide x 18" high and 2 cages with a single front, back, top and bottom). It all depends on the space you have and your individual setup. Many people like to get separate cages. If you get double cages for the does and bucks with the sizes mentioned immediately above, the item numbers are: Does: H94M, Bucks: H93A. Single cages for the same sizes are: Does: H89M, Bucks: H88A.
For the feeders, we like the Fine-X feeders. These have wire screens at the bottom for dust to pass through, keeping the feeders cleaner. For the does, 7 1/2" feeders (FX70) and for the bucks, 3 1/2" feeders (FX30). Different sizes is because the does will need more food for herself and her litter after kindling. The bucks will only need about a heaping tuna fish can full at all times. And the cages are different sizes. Always install the feeders in the doors, with the hole just above the baby saver wire mark. This leaves more room on the front of the cage for either the water bottle or automatic waterer. The cage cards on our Record Keeping page fit on the does feeders.
We use an automatic watering system (Edstrom Flex Tube System), but still have some water bottles for some cages. When we were using the water bottles, we always used the 32oz Lixit "Best Buy" Plastic Water Bottles (B242). The 64 oz might also be a good idea, but we never used them (BL64).
There are 2 systems you can use utilizing the Edstrom system. There is the bucket gravity fed system and the direct piping system. We chose the direct piped system utilizing a pressure regulator to decrease the pressure from the water line. However, we utilize the bucket system with our chickens and it works well.
Edstrom Flex Tube System Components:
- Flex Tubing 3/16": A401 for per foot or A402 for full 500' roll
- Brass cap 3/16" valve: A102
- Valve clip for A102, used with each valve: A108
- Tubing Standoff to keep away from cage: A403
- Barbed Tees: A405
- Barbed Elbows: A404
- Barbed Connectors: A406
- Shut-off Valve: A407
- Drain Valve: A408
- Pressure Regulator for PVC system: A204
To put together the cages, you'll need the J-Clip pliers (ZJC3). These will come in handy for the future too.
You'll also need the Economy 5" Ringer (Z024) if you put together the double cages for putting the cage wall between the two compartments (on the bottom, where the wire is too small for J-Clips and require C-Rings that should come with the cage).
We always purchase extra J-Clips (R430) and C-Rings (R010) to have because they come in handy for cage adjustments, fixes, etc. They're really inexpensive.
You might want to consider Standard Ringers (Z816) in ADDITION to the above tools, but only if you like to have extra tools on hand (we do). These won't work for putting the wall divider between the cages as they are too big, but would be used if you are putting a lot of C-Rings on a cage wall for whatever reason, like if you put White Color Solid "Poly" Dividers for walls on buck's cages to keep them from peeing on each other over territory disputes in their cages (18"x30": D281). These will need small holes drilled in the sides and attached with C-Rings instead of the normal walls that come with the cages. The J-Clip Removers (ZJCR) are also extremely useful if you are making adjustments and need to remove J-Clips (not fun!).
We really like the 2-compartment (C02P) or 3 compartment (C03P) for transporting or for putting rabbits in while doing cage maintenance. If you get these, also get 2 cage handles for each carrier (Z766) and Spring Locks (Z812). If you want the ability to stack these carriers on top of each other, the Travel Locks are great (Z069).
If you are filling up the water bottles with a hose, the Hose Nozzles are great (BHN1). These are the same as sold by auto stores to fill radiators.
Tattoo equipment: Grand Champion II Registrar's Set (T92R).
Slicker Brush for brushing rabbits when they are molting: (G003).
Nail Clippers: (G012)
Ventilation Fan: Dayton - we use (VSF2) with variable speed control (V044)
Nest Box Hangers: latches to wire at back of cage to keep from sliding around (YD16)
That's a lot, but they are some of the things we recommend. Some you'll need immediately, some you can get later, some are optional. We have other equipment and supplies too, but this is sufficient to get started.
For weighing litters, tracking growth, keeping records...
We use and highly recommend the Ultrascale MBSC-55 Digital Baby Pet Scale. It is extremely reliable, accurate and easy to use. It doesn't come with a power cord, but can be purchased separately.
Optional Power Cord: Ultraship Power Supply