Should I Neuter My Pet Rabbit?

Should I Neuter / Spay My Pet Rabbit?

In my opinion...absolutely and I'm going to give you some reasons to consider it.

Rabbits become sexually mature quite young, between 4-6 months of age, and need to be spayed/neutered if you are hoping for the best possible house rabbit. Here are just a few reasons to spay/neuter your rabbit:

  • Sexual maturity can cause a good bunny to have bad manners and will probably result in less time out of the cage and some harsh words.

  • Girls/Does that have not been spayed frequently develop uterine cancer.

  • A buck/boy that is not neutered can become mean, spray and loose their manners.

  • Does can become pregnant again an hour after giving birth.  Wow! That one still amazes me. If you have an unaltered doe and buck caged together she can become pregnant almost immediately after giving birth.

  • Unaltered rabbits commonly have poor litter box habits.

  • There are countless unwanted rabbits living in Rabbit Rescue's all over the country, there's no need to make more just for the fun of it.
     

It is recommended, and I highly agree, that you have your pet rabbit neutered /spayed between 4 and 6 months of age.

 

Rabbits Are Good At Multiplying!

Behavior

Once a pet rabbit hits a few months of age, hormones and sexual maturity can cause undesirable behavior changes and bad litter habits. The hormones may cause your rabbit to become aggressive, territorial and begin spraying or nipping. Aggressive marking of territory can also cause a rabbit to leave allot of extra marbles scattered about.
Those of us with house rabbits obviously want the best pet possible and hormones can make it seem as though your rabbit has just gone thru an unwanted personality change.

Courting

One problem I've had with my maturing bucks is aggressive courting, in fact, I'd call it stalking. Not only do hormonal rabbits court other rabbits, they can also court you! Oh how cute! Yup, it is for a little while.

Sadie would run around me in circles while letting out the little humming sound. He also liked to leave a trail of marbles to mark this track as well. Oh brother. And though I know this will be hard to believe, before he was neutered I found marbles in my slippers and on my side of the bed....not my husbands, oh no, just mine. Obviously this is where being a true bunny rabbit lover comes in handy as most people would be totally grossed out.

They will also court other rabbits by circling and mounting them (male or female). At times this unwanted attention can result in fights which generally start with some flying fur but can actually end in injury. If the mounting rabbit jumps on the wrong way, the party beneath him may choose to bite him...right in the luggage. Not the neuter you had in mind.

Spraying

While having a rabbit court you may be cute, spraying is not. This can also begin during the "hormonal stage". Spraying you say? Yes! Spraying. A polite way of saying I got hit with a stream of pee. Yuck!

Grandpa Sadie was really really good at this. I'd be laying on the floor playing with him and before you can say "oh gross" he would spray me with pee (sometimes in the face.) Oh, how sweet. Spraying can be a part of courtship (or insult) and while it's primarily males/bucks who do this, females can also shoot a stream.

Controlling Pregnancy

And of course altering your rabbit prevents pregnancy. Honestly, if you are considering breeding your rabbit, you should have a really good reason. If you haven't already done so take a peek at all the hundreds of Rabbit Rescue's trying to find homes for unwanted rabbits. There are 1000's of homeless bunnies available all over the country and we certainly don't need to be adding to that number just to see cute little babies born.

Grandpa's Mom and Siblings
Pointer Is Grandpa


When I brought Hannah home, Grandpa's mother, she was already pregnant. I was nervous, everyone else thought it would be cool. Watching baby bunnies grow up is fun....finding good homes for 7 baby rabbits was a nightmare. I met many people that merely wanted a rabbit because they're small, cute and fuzzy. It usually scares me when someone who has no "rabbit knowledge" thinks these fuzzy little creatures are for them or worse, for children! They are too much work for most children. Pets do not make good impulse buys!

Health

Female rabbits who are not spayed carry a high risk of developing uterine cancer.

 

 

Pick A Good Vet For Your Rabbit
Rabbits are not just like a cat or dog. You will need to find a vet who has experience with rabbits.
Ask your prospective vet how many rabbits they've neutered and what the mortality rate is.
If you don't know where to start try Exotic Animal Vets in your yellow pages.
Check to make sure your vet has experience with lagomorphs.
 

Highly Recommended:

Dr Bonnie Brown DVM

Dr. Bonnie Brown, DVM
Jolly Pond Veterinary, Williamsburg VA

 

 


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