Rabbit farm raised for meat and laboratory testing.
Rabbits for meat are slaughtered at around four months of age.
In the wild, rabbits excavate lengthy underground tunnels culminating in chambers, forming intricate subterranean mazes with multiple interconnected entrances. The rabbit colony adheres to a structural hierarchy, where younger and weaker individuals are subordinate to their older and stronger counterparts.
However, in the breeding reality of captivity, rabbits are confined to long rows of cramped cages, depriving them of the opportunity to run, hop, and burrow in the ground. At the outset of their lives, they are assigned identification numbers, which are tattooed onto their ears.
Traditional nests are substituted with plastic containers. In a medium-intensity breeding system, each rabbit produces 40 offspring distributed across 6-7 litters annually. Breeders aiming for a more intensive system strive to attain 60-70 youngsters from a single female over the course of 8-9 litters per year.
Males are typically culled primarily due to age or if reproductive tract diseases emerge, which could facilitate the spread of diseases through mating. Females are also removed from the breeding pool due to age, as well as factors such as a low number of offspring produced, reluctance to mate, reproductive system diseases, and other conditions necessitating economic intervention.
Rabbits are primarily raised for two purposes: meat production and research institutes. The majority of rabbits destined for meat consumption do not reach six months of age. Dried rabbit ears are marketed and sold as dog treats. The killing method employed involves striking the neck area just below the ears with a baton, and an inaccurate blow can result in significant suffering for the animal.