Rabbit Neutering Risks: Why Spay Your Bunny?

There are a lot of bunnies but not nearly enough time. Every day, people who have found rabbits in the wild or who are looking to find new homes for the rabbits they already own contact us by phone or email. When it comes to the responsibility of caring for animals, it worries me to think about what some people might be teaching their children. The anguish that can be caused by bunny hormones is something I can empathize with because I have, on more occasions than I care to admit, been in a similar situation. The vast majority of individuals who are selling rabbits for twenty dollars in the newspaper, in addition to a good number of the pet stores that I have visited, are unaware of the aspects of rabbit care that are essential to ensuring their long-term health and well-being.

When a rabbit reaches its teen years, which typically occurs between the ages of 4-6 months, this is the time when all of its bunny hormones begin racing. Females, as well as males, will exhibit extreme levels of cage territoriality. When they are inside their cages, you shouldn’t put your hands in there because they will try to “box” you or lunge at you with their teeth. When male bunnies want to mark their territory, they will start to spray urine on the ground. We have also seen female bunnies do their own version of this behavior. The hormonal issues that people see as “bad-bunny” behavior are, quite simply, issues that we all go through at some point in our lives. Even though we don’t use spray paint on the walls, we still…

When things are difficult and you find yourself tearing your hair out in frustration, it is important to remember that there is hope. Do you know if your rabbit has been spayed or neutered? Not only will it help to calm down the hormones (you will start to see a difference in about 30 days), but it can also help with training them to use the litter box and it can also increase their lifespan (and helps with the overcrowded domestic rabbit population). If you must know, let me explain. According to those who sell rabbits but are not knowledgeable about the species, a rabbit’s average lifespan is between two and four years. Have they ever explained to you that this is because ovarian and testicular cancer is the most common cause of death in rabbits over the age of four? If so, have you ever heard that explanation? No, because they lack knowledge in this particular field! You actually have the ability to contribute to your rabbit living between 8 and 12 more years (depending on the breed size). There is a dwarf in our company who is currently 16 years old and is the cherished pet of the current President of The Hollow.

Just like cats and dogs, rabbits come in a wide range of sizes, shapes, and colors, and each has its own distinct personality. They are able to learn how to use a litter box and can be taught to come when they are called. Be wary because they can steal your heart in a very significant way. You’ll be glad you brought those hutch bunnies inside and gave them the opportunity to live a real life full of love and companionship; they’ll be glad you did too! If you would like more information about our organization, please go to www.hopalonghollow.org.

If you want your rabbit to have a good chance of waking up from the anesthesia, you need to make sure that it has not been living on pine or cedar shavings for at least one and a half months prior to the surgery. If you don’t do this, they have a chance of over 50 percent not waking up. These woods have a significant impact on their lungs and kidneys, and they also cause an elevation in their liver enzymes. Blood panels should be done first on older bunnies, those that are five years old or older.

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