As promised, this week on 4-H Folklore we have Ariana’s story about her experience at the Norfolk 4-H Rabbit Club. Ariana learned tons about rabbits, and so did I from reading her story!
Norfolk 4-H Rabbit Club
By Ariana Tersteege
Norfolk 4-H Rabbit Club is run by Wendy Lamb at her farm in Lindoch, ON. It is an agility/showmanship club for rabbits. We are taught how to properly do rabbit agility, showing of rabbits, grooming and cleaning rabbits and the welfare of rabbits. We have a club meeting once a month on a Thursday.
For agility, Wendy teaches us how to get our rabbits to go over jumps, through tunnels, and weave through pegs. She also teaches us how to keep our rabbits healthy. She has taught me that I must clean their cages once a week and feed them every day. She has also taught me which vegetables I can and cannot feed them. For example, I have learned that you cannot feed them anything from the cabbage family because it will create gas and rabbits are unable to release gas. Also it is good to treat your bunny to only a small amount of fruits and vegetables a day.
Wendy has also taught us about many breeds of rabbits, such as Holland Lop, Netherland Dwarf, Lionhead, and Flemish Giant. I have also learned many different colourings of rabbits such as blue chinchilla, otter, agouti, black steel, tortoiseshell, broken, Californian, castor, cinnamon, chocolate, cream, fawn, pearl, grey, lilac, orange, red, sable, sandy, seal, self group, shaded group, ticking, tortoise, and many more. During that process I have learned that my rabbit is a blue Holland Lop.
I have learned how to show my rabbit and about showmanship. We must bathe our rabbits, groom them, and trim their toe nails before showing them. If we accidently cut one of their nails too far, we have been taught to put the nail in baking soda to stop the bleeding. I have learned that you have to wear proper showing clothes and for showing a rabbit you have to wear a white top and black pants. To start the proper showing process, you must introduce yourself and your rabbit to the judge. To show you rabbit you have to describe each side of the rabbit, features and the condition they are in. For example: “My rabbit’s ears are nice and clean and free of debris. It is also not tattooed”. To end the showing, you repeat your introduction. You must also thank your judge or judges. I have also learned that you are judged out of a hundred points. Wendy’s daughter, Chrissy, has helped a lot of the members with their showmanship.
Wendy makes sure we do public speaking at every meeting. She makes it fun and easy to do. Wendy makes the club fun, yet we learn a lot about our rabbits and what to do with them. I think she is a very good leader because she knows the topic and she makes the club fun to attend. I have learned everything I know about rabbits from her. She is a good role model because she is a kind person and loves animals.
Ariana is a junior Norfolk 4-H member. She has been in 4-H for two years and has already completed 10 projects including Pie Please, Archery and Goat.