Rabbit Wellbeing

Why should you sterilize your rabbit?

Sterilize your rabbit to prevent reproduction

When adopting a rabbit, you may be wondering about the benefits of having it sterilized. The main reason for this sterilization is to prevent rabbits from reproducing. It is mainly the adopter’s choice. If you already have several rabbits, sterilization is necessary and allows everyone to live in harmony without any problem. Sterilization may also have other reasons, including medical and behavioural ones. The recommended age for sterilization is between 6 months and 1 year and must be done under gas anaesthesia.

Sterilize your rabbit for behavioural reasons

One reason to castrate your rabbit is to avoid problematic behaviours, quite embarrassing ones, especially at home. This may involve the territory marking with urine jets for the male or dirtiness for the female. Similarly, in the case of cohabitation between two rabbits of the same sex, conflicts can arise and lead to serious injuries. Sterilization will prevent these issues. In males, behavioural problems also relate to their constant need to seek mating. This can be embarrassing on a daily basis. In females, this behavioural aspect is less common, but they may sometimes seek to mate incessantly or initiate pseudo pregnancy. Sterilization and neutering of a rabbit put an end to this type of behaviour related to the rabbit’s hormonal production as soon as it reaches puberty. Count about 3 weeks after the operation to find a more cuddly and sociable rabbit, but don’t expect miracles either, sterilization doesn’t radically change the rabbits’ behaviour!

Sterilize your rabbit for medical reasons

Medical issues often occur in females rabbits and are less common in males. However, for males, testicular tumours can arise and are often benign. Urinary incontinence is the most common reproductive pathology in male rabbits. For females, on the other hand, it is essential to sterilize them since all vets agree that they are 3 times more likely than males to develop a uterine or an ovarian tumour. It is a disease called uterine adenocarcinoma. This condition progresses rapidly until it causes bleeding from the uterine walls or pain that leads to loss of appetite, slowed transit and sometimes even depression. This tumour can also spread and cause breathing difficulties. This is caused by hormonal activity, which is widely considered to be a triggering factor in the development of cancer. The sooner you have your rabbit sterilized, the more you will protect it from this type of medical problem.

The best time to have your rabbit sterilized

The best way to sterilize a female rabbit is as soon as possible. Indeed, the longer you wait, the more likely its uterus will be damaged. It’s better to do it before its first year. If your rabbit’s behaviour is unbearable, do not to wait too long: the sooner you do this operation, the better your rabbit’s behaviour will improve. However, it is strongly discouraged to have your pet spayed or neutered before it is 6 months old. Early sterilization can have an impact on your rabbit’s health, especially its endocrine system. If in doubt, wait until it has reached adulthood.

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