Steps we take when assessing litters early is looking at their hindquarter frame. The back leg alignment will determine how their HQs develop as they grow. In our experience, this usually does not improve over time and it’s an easy way to decide who to keep and who to cull.
The idea is that keepers should not make an arrow ➡️ between their toes and their tails. Back legs that don’t sit parallel to the backbone will usually result in ”pinched” hindquarters.
Wideset, parallel bck legs are ideal (below).
Even these legs need improvement but we like how the hock and toes rest to the outside of the body.
These legs are aligned with the body but rest inside the lines of the animal. This kit might be tensed and holding the legs in. Allowing kits to relax fully will help determine what their natural leg position will be.
As you can see we always strive to make improvements!
Pick the best and eat the rest. Selling culls will only ruin a reputation- or at least be honest with your stock. Explain what you would keep vs why you would cull the animals you let leave your barn.
Tip: When evaluating animals you want to purchase online, ask for a relaxed photo of the rabbit on their backs. Pay attention to where their toes and hocks fall.
This also allows you to see sore hocks.