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Why are many male farm animals castrated?

Article ID: 360
Last updated: 25 Nov, 2009
Revision: 1
Views: 19482

Male sheep, cattle, goats and pigs are routinely castrated in order to reduce aggression and subsequent injury. Methods of castration are either by blade or rubber ring. At present, castration is carried out as a routine husbandry procedure on young animals without the use of anaesthetic or pain relief.

The RSPCA believes that castration must only be undertaken where there is a clearly established need. For example, there is no need to castrate animals which are destined for slaughter prior to sexual maturity e.g. piglets, lambs or calves.
The RSPCA believes that where castration is undertaken, it should be accompanied by pain relief and/or anaesthetic depending on the method used.
The castration of older animals as well as the castration of deer, donkeys, horses and camelids of all ages is considered a major surgical procedure and we believe it must only be performed under anaesthetic by a veterinary surgeon.

This website provides general information which must not be relied upon or regarded as a substitute for specific professional advice, including veterinary advice. We make no warranties that the website is accurate or suitable for a person's unique circumstances and provide the website on the basis that all persons accessing the website responsibly assess the relevance and accuracy of its content.
Also read
document Why are painful procedures performed without anaesthetic?
document Can the RSPCA prosecute farmers for performing painful husbandry procedures without anaesthetic or pain relief?
document What is boar taint and how can it be prevented?

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