One of the first questions always asked by potential Flemish owners is always the same: “Is it a boy or a girl?” Regarding rabbits, the boys or males are technically termed as “bucks”, & the girls or females are “does”. While there is only one way to check the sex, doing so can sometimes be confusing, especially on very young rabbits. However, an experienced breeder can often tell what the genders of the babies (“kits”) are within 3 days of birth. Often times, it is harder to get the bunnies to hold still while being checked than it is to actually do the checking. Once the kit is on its back though, gently using your fingers, spread apart the genital area. With newborn or young kits, the does will have a split, called the ‘vent’, which is very close in distance to anus, & the bucks will have more of a circle, with a gap between the penis & anus.
Examine your kit multiple times
It should be mentioned here too, that checking this should be done 2-3 times in succession, or by immediately being looked at – look away – looked at again – look away – & then looked at a third time; or better yet, by having another person there who can also check at the same time, to verify that what you are seeing is actually what you think it is (yes, it can be easily misleading, so its always best to take “the best 2 out of 3” in agreement.) Even then, it is possible to get it wrong; though for the most part, experienced breeders will get it right at least 90% of the time. The older the rabbit is also makes the job of sexing easier.
Examining older flemish bunnies
In addition to this, most experienced, quality Flemish Giant breeders also will not sell a kit until it is at the minimum of 3 – 4 months old. The reason for this is because Giant breeds mature at a slower rate, therefore they require longer time to grow before they are weaned and fully separated from their mom. The benefit of this, sexing wise, is that which was just noted; the older the bunny is, the easier it is to check its sex with a higher degree of certainty. Where this falls into play, the checking part is the same regardless to age. But, in comparison to sight, a healthy buck’s penis will protrude further, & there will be a small circle at the tip of the penis. Otherwise, once bucks are closer to sexual maturity – at approximately 6 months of age, their testes will be visible as well. With does, the vent will protrude a small amount, but the split down the center will be easy to see.