We recommend that all non-breeding rabbits are neutered as standard. We recommend that males and females are separated from 10 weeks of age with males being neutered at 4-5 months and females around 6 months.
Other than preventing unwanted pregnancies, the benefits of neutering are wide ranging and in males include reduction of aggression, scent marking and territorial behaviour. In females, neutering is extremely important as 70-90% of female rabbits over the age of 3 will develop uterine cancer called an adenocarcinoma. These tumours can spread to other parts of the body and potentially lead to abdominal pain and ultimately death.
In house rabbits, neutering generally makes house training easier and can help to reduce some unwanted behaviours.
Anaesthetics in rabbits still carry a higher risk than in cats and dogs but we use the most up to date and safest protocols involving injecting anaesthetic into a vein in the ear. This anaesthetic means that rabbits fall asleep very quickly and it is reversible, ensuring a smooth, fast recovery.
In male rabbits, the surgical incisions are glued shut so there are no stitches to remove and they do not need to wear a "lampshade" style Elizabethan collar. In females we use stitches under the skin which, again, cannot be chewed out so collars are not necessary. The elimination of the need for collars reduces stress and allows rabbits to perform their normal behaviours, ensuring minimal complications during the recovery period.
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