We bought 3 rabbits at the Virginia State Fair, rabbits we bought under the condition that Martina could show them. Two months later we went to our first show, the December Richmond Rabbit Breeders Association show at the Richmond International Speedway.
Our rabbit are Netherland Dwarfs. Dwarves? Either way, the entry fees were low and preparation time minimal compared to the horse show agenda we are accustomed to. Martina almost talked me out of going but when I finally wheedled out of her what the problem was, we decided to get up early on Saturday and go. She was upset with herself for not working with her rabbits a lot more. I guess she thought that she needed to train them…
What we learned: this was a carrier show. All of the rabbits stayed in their carriers until their class was called. At that time they were carried to the judging table and placed into cages or boxes on the table with the other rabbits in the class. The judge ranked them and if there were several, sent all but the top two (I think) back to their carriers. Then the best of variety, best of class and best opposite (opposite sex from best of class) were awarded. We learned that a Senior Netherland Dwarf doe can only weigh 2.5 pounds. ZsaZsa, our black otter doe, weighs a whopping 3 pounds. Fat ass. She was DQed.
We learned that there are a LOT of people who are rabbit crazy! People drive all up and down the east coast and into the midwest going to rabbit shows 3 or 4 times a month! There’s a bunch of money going into the Rabbit Industry, which I didn’t even know existed until yesterday. There are cages made for transporting the maximum number of rabbits in the minimal amount of space. Feeders and water bottles, brushes and toenail clippers, grooming tables and rabbitry wear. There were embroidered chairs all over the place with rabbitry names. T-shirts and bags. Rabbit grooming supply carrying cases. And we showed up with our rabbits in cat carriers lined with newspaper. We have a huge ‘maxivan’ though, driving up in a Prius would require that the bunnies fit in the least possible amount of space.
And there were rabbits for sale *everywhere* at the show: Mini lop; mini Rex; Flemish giant; in colors with names like: squirrel; chestnut; chinchilla; and ruby eyed white.
There was a raffle. A gigantic raffle with tables and tables filled with items and cages of rabbits all with numbered bags for you to drop your raffle ticket into. Martina dropped all three of her tickets into the bag on top of the cage containing one chinchilla Netherland Dwarf buck. She won. I put one of my tickets in there and two in the bag on top of another cage containing a black otter Netherland Dwarf buck. I won that one. The tickets were 3/$1. So the cheapest thing we did all day was get rabbits for .33 cents each.
She named her new bunny Stormy. Mine came with the name William but it’s got to change. I think I’ll name him after a Norse god or a character from Beowulf. Braggi perhaps? I don’t want to entice the spirit of Loki into our rabbitry, that’s certain.
We had a great time and are going to join the ARBA (American Rabbit Breeders Association) and intend to go to many more shows. It was fun. The people were very nice and the spirit of the thing was low- stress, supportive and kind of sweet.
As for ZsaZsa the Fat? She’s going to be a mommy soon because the one thing the judges did say about her is that she will make nice, nice babies. Anyone want a bunny?