If you have something to add, thoughts, questions etc, let me know.
- Don't let making money be your main (or only) motivation. Concentrate on creating amazing, beautiful rabbits that truly make you proud to claim ownership to. Put the Money aside. Once you have worked hard to create something beautiful, people will come knocking on the doors. This is one of the biggest mistakes I see occurring, people rush into this thinking of the money, and then breed poor quality animals that don't end up bringing any money at all. There are plenty of money focused people out there. Don't be one of them. Let the money come later.
- The key to being successful is doing what you love. If you are in this just because "(fill in the blank)" but you don't really love what you are doing, you won't go very far. If you throw yourself into it and really work at it, you're much more likely to become successful at producing a rabbit to be proud of.
- Raise an animal to be proud of. Don't just say "oh this even though this little bunny has a bad DQ, he is so cute I'll keep it just because" and then breed it. That won't get you far. Culling is a part of this. It's hard, but needed. A Helpful tip: Take the best of your stock, put two and two together, and create something amazing. You'll be happier in the end.
- CARE about what you are doing. Really care about it. Devote your time to really working hard to understand the breed you have chosen to develop, raise it to the Standard of Perfection, and CARE. Just saying "I raise my rabbits to the Standard of Perfection" doesn't mean a thing if you aren't living it. Ask yourself, are you studying SOP guide and saying "I need to work on this, this and this and I don't quite have this" ? Are you doing your best to understand the genetics behind your rabbit(s) to create a better rabbit? I have to ask myself these questions time and again, and I can tell you that I still don't have it all together, but this much I know: If you care, and you work, and you really love what you do, you'll go far.
- Be ready to ask for someone else's opinion. Taking critique can be really, really hard, but it is essential. Ask someone who knows more than you do about raising that specific breed what would they think you need to work on. I've found this to be eye opening. You come to the realization, wow, I wouldn't have thought about that, and you end up being so thankful and grateful for their input. This was a huge blessing for me, to have good mentors that were truly able to help and show me my own mistakes.
- Decide exactly what you want to do. Think long term. If you tell yourself, I'm wanting to make a long term commitment ( maybe 1-5 years, maybe more) to work at raising rabbits, do some evaluating. Ask yourself, Is this really what I want? Why do I want to do this? What is my motivation? What breed is the right one for me? Something that can help you with this is ordering the SOP, reading through it and then deciding. You'll end up knowing many of the ups/downs and requirements to each breed, and you can decide where to go from there. This also is key to being successful.
There are some thoughts. Let me know if you have any questions, and feel free to leave a comment!