I know this was a crazy idea to start with… 13 chickens and 2 rabbits for dog food.
However, I need to do some cost/benefit style analysis (as a reference for somebody else)
Capital Investments (one time only)
1/2 ” Hardware mesh for bottom of cage (also used for chicks) – $9.73
Chicken wire – left on hand from before, but $8.27
Wood for outside of cage and wire – $22.00
Hay feeder – $5.98
Waterer – $3.99
Cost of the Rabbits – $11.00
Rabbit food (25 lbs, $9.99 per bag, eat 8 oz a day each) – $0.40 per day x 28 days = $11.18
Hay – $8.99 (has lasted the whole month, with more left)
Total Cost: $81.14
Current Weight: 11.8 lbs
Price per Pound: $7.26
Now that I have the cage, price per pound can fall to $2.65, which is about what I pay from Hare Today (with shipping included).
In conclusion… these two rabbits do NOT justify feeding them to the dog, so, I will eat them!
I will be going to the auction tomorrow to get more rabbits. If I can get them at eatable size, it IS cost effective. The rabbits were $1.15 a pound to purchase. Daily upkeep is $0.70 (for two), so keeping the rabbits for up to a week is worth it, but it is not worth it for longer.
This was a fun experiment though, and I may continue with the rabbits into the future. Since I can get them so cheap. If I were just to take them home and butcher, it can be super cost effective!