Heaton Rabbitry

Rabbit Showmanship and Judging

Selecting a Californian Rabbit Meat Pen For Texas Show
Californina Meat Pen Rabbit In Texas Summer Heat
Rabbit Diseases and Health Problems
Tips on Raising a Califoriann Rabbit Meat Pen For Texas Shows
Order your Californian or New Zealand Rabbit Meat Pen For Texas Show From An Excellent Breeder
Type of Califorian Rabbit Meat Pen to Purchase From Texas Breeder
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Californian Meat Pen Rabbit Health Issues In Texas
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Showmanship and Judging
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Texas Rabbit Breeders Association Shows
Frequently Asked Questions

Your Californian or New Zealand rabbit meat pen may be able to be used for other competition at your show.
 Rabbit Showmanship is becoming an important  part of many county rabbit meat pen shows.    One of the best tips that I can give you is to smile and enjoy the competition.  After I give you the points for the Texas 4-H Showmanship, I will give you a few things that I look for when I judge Showmanship shows.
Carry Rabbits  -  5 pts.
To properly carry the rabbit, tuck the head under one arm and support the rabbit's weight by placing the other hand under the rump.  If the judge asks you tomove to a different spot on the table, always use the same manner to move the rabbits.
Pose Rabbit  -  5 pts.
For proper pose, front feet should be even with the eyes.  Rear feet should be firmly on table with toes even with haunch(thigh joint) with tail up.  Facing left is natural position for right handed presenter.
Check Ears  -  5 pts.
Examine ears for mites, proper tattoo, torn or missing portions of ears that detract from general appearance.
Turn Rabbit Over  -  10 pts.
Properly support rabbit on the table or against your body while turning it over in order to complete the next tasks.
Check Teeth  -  4 pts.
With your hand over the area of the eyes, place a thumb and index finger on each side of the split lip and push back lips to examine teeth for defects.
Check Eyes  -  4 pts.
Examine eyes for defects.
Check Nose  -  3 pts.
Check for signs of snuffles.  White nasal discharge and/or matted fur on inside front legs may indicate presence of snuffles (colds).
Check Toenails  -  4 pts.
Push thumb into center of paw to examine toenails for missing, unmatched and proper color toenails on all feet.  Be sure to check for dew claws.
Check Hocks and Front Feet  -  4 pts.
Check the bottom of all four feet for sore hocks.
Check Legs  -  10 pts.
Extend front legs to check for straightness.  Extend rear legs by placing your cupped hand ahead of the rear legs and pushing toward feet.  Legs should not be bent, bowed, deformed or cow-hocked.
Check Body  -  5 pts
Run your hand over the chest and abdominal area to check for any abscesses, tumors or other abnormalities.  Ruptures may appear as large lumps or sores in the belly area.
Check Sex  -  6 pts.
Place thumb below vent area and push toward front of rabbit with index finger.
Return to Posed Position and Check Tail  -  6 pts.
Check for straightness in the tail.
Check for Proper Coloring, Smut, and Foreign Spots  -  4 pts.
Check the fur for foreign colored spots not typical of the breed you are showing.  Inspect for smut.  under color and/or ring color should be consistent with desired coloring in the breed you are showing.
Check for Quality and Cleanliness  -  4 pts.
Stroke fur toward rabbit's head to show fur returning to natural position, either flyback or rollback.  Patting and blowing into several areas will help to check density standing/upright fur in some breeds.  Check for stains and molting.
Pose for Evaluation of Overall Balance  -  5 pts.
Check front, rear and side views for overall balance.  Locate shoulders, rib spread and fullness of loin with your hands.  Check hindquarters for fullness by examining width and depth of the rump.  Check hips for smoothness/fullness by running your hand over the top of the hip to tail.
Exhibitors Appearance  -  5 pts.
Exhibitor should demonstrate good posture, eye contact, pleasant attitude, and neat dress.  Remove chewing gum, hats, and caps.  Long hair should be neatly managed.
Exhibitors Actions  -  5 pts.
Demonstrate gentle and smooth flowing presentation with a confident manner throughout examination.  Be considerate to animals, fellow showmen and the judge.
Exhibitors Knowledge  -  5 pts,
Quick, confident and correct response to questions asked during the presentation.

Point System - Judging a Meat Pen
          Meat Type  -  40 points
          Condition  -  30 points
          Uniformity  -  20 points
                Fur  -  10 points
                 MEAT TYPE
This is the most important factor in judging a meat pen.  The rabbit needs to be compact with a well filled body, with firm flesh.
The rabbits should be firm in flesh with the pelt tight over the entire body.
The rabbits must look like 3 peas in a pod.  Uniformity must be present in size, weight, meat type, color, and fur.
The fur should fly back be tight with no loose hair.  It should be clean and have a natural shine.  Fur is mostly genetic and is many times the deciding factor between the top 3 places.