Rabbit meat is so healthy and lean that doctors
prescribe rabbit meat diets to people who are overweight and obese.
Because the fat and calorie levels are so low, but protein so high, one
can radically change their life by eating a rabbit meat diet and
Take a look at this chart on the nutritional values of rabbit meat and other popular meats:
Reasons To Raise Backyard Rabbit For Meat
You may have been considering raising chickens, geese, ducks, goats, sheep or other small livestock for meat, but once you learn how easy it is to raise rabbits, you’ll never consider another animal for a primary meat source.
Rabbits have an extremely high reproduction rate. One healthy, mature doe can produce up to 1000% of her body weight every year. Owning just one female and one male can supply meat twice a week for a family of four.
Rabbits need very little living space. Whether you’re living in a condo or out in the country, you can always find space to raise a couple rabbits. No grazing is required and they’re rarely classified as livestock which allows you to keep them virtually anywhere. How many apartment complexes would let you keep a chicken or goat in them?
Rabbits are low maintenance. Check in on them every evening to feed, water and do quick health checks, clean their cages once a month and keep a simple breeding journal – that’s all you need to do! Females take care of the young themselves and the only special tools you’ll need are nesting boxes which you can even build yourself. No incubators or hand feeding required.
Rabbits are virtually silent roommates. Aside from the mating shriek, rabbits are extremely quiet animals. They won’t reveal your location to anyone, even if you’re traveling with them. Who knows what a chicken, goose or duck is likely to attract, not to mention a rooster. If outdoor cages are well hidden and clean, neighbors may not even know they are there.
A little rabbit feed goes a long way. When bunnies are being weaned (6-8 weeks old), they are large enough for consumption. This allows you to skip giving most of the bunnies feed as you gradually cull the young, leaving only the adults to consume expensive rabbit feed.
Rabbits are the perfect sized meal for a family of four. Rabbits are compact and usually butchered at “fryer size” (3-5 pounds), so you don’t have to worry about storing or eating leftovers.
Rabbit manure will make your garden love you. Rabbit manure is an excellent fertilizer for your garden that won’t burn plants. Plus, if you vermicompost, your worms can be fed the droppings which will make them love you too.
Rabbit meat is very high in protein and extremely low in fat and cholesterol. Very few other meats have nutritional values like rabbits, and none of them can be raised in your living room. Doctors have actually been known to prescribe rabbit meat diets to overweight patients.
Rabbit fur will make an incredibly warm coat and is a great bartering item. On a cold winter’s night, snuggling into a blanket made from rabbit pelts will keep your family warm long after the fire has gone out. You can also make hats or other accessories, and kids love getting a lucky rabbit’s foot.
Rabbits are relatively easy to butcher and clean. No one likes doing it but if you’re going to eat them, they day will come eventually. Someone with experience can take a rabbit from cage to freezer in 15 minutes or less. No plucking is needed and there’s very little cleanup.
All that and more is possible if you begin raising your own rabbits for meat. Rabbits are quiet, clean and docile creatures which can even be raised in your home. Even most apartment dwellers can find enough space to raise a few rabbits and neighbors may never even know they are there.
People have been raising meat rabbits for centuries but breeding rabbits for meat and fur production didn’t become popular in the United States until the beginning of the 20th century. During the Great Depression, many families began raising rabbits for food to avoid starvation and provide a significant source of protein. Despite only feeding the rabbits table scraps and foraged greens, a family could still have decent rabbit meat production numbers although the rabbits were not at their ultimate protein levels.The US Agricultural Department expects food prices to rise 3.5-4.5% in 2009, versus an increase of 5-6% in 2008. The average price of beef has increased almost 44% since 1996. The price for a pound of chicken has increased 300% since 1998. Do you want to keep giving your money to big business or would you rather keep it at home where it belongs? There is no better time to take control of your own food supply chain and to being raising meat rabbits in addition to growing your own vegetables and fruits. Just a few minutes out of every evening are enough to keep your rabbitry running smoothly.