Every year, countless dogs and cats are euthanized in shelters because they are unable to be placed in loving homes. The easiest way to prevent this tragedy is by taking your pet to the vet for a little minor surgery prior to puberty. (Check with your vet, but many breeds can be safely spayed or neutered as early as 8 weeks of age.)
Have you ever wondered if there were other reasons to spay or neuter your dog than the obvious? The answer to that question is resounding YES! Although you may just think of fixing your dog as being a way to prevent unwanted litters, the reasons to spay or neuter go far beyond population control. Lets look at some of the other reasons:
- A neutered male is less likely to run away. A male who has not been altered only has one thing on his mind… yep, sex! But, don’t think that’s a problem reserved for the boys, girls do it too. An animal’s natural tendency to want to preserve the species and they will do what they have to in order to find a mate.
- Spaying your female will help prevent mammary cancer. Besides being expensive to treat, mammary cancer is fatal in about 50% of dogs. Spaying should be done before the first heat in order to get the full benefit. But, don’t let it deter you from having it done if your little girl has already had a heat cycle. Older dogs can benefit as well. Spaying also prevents uterine infections.
- Neutering your male prevents testicular cancer. Neutered males are also less likely to develop prostate problems. Just like the girls though, the best benefits are achieved when the surgery is done before sexual maturity.
- A spayed female will not have heat cycles. (there’s a reason they’re called ‘bitches.”) Enough said?
- Neutered males are less likely to “mark their territory.” Unless you are a big fan of boys lifting their leg on everything they see (or sniff,) this is reason enough to go for the big snip!
- Altered dogs just make better pets. Dogs who have been spayed or neutered are less likely to be aggressive, and more apt to bond with their human family.
- Spaying and neutering is cost effective. In comparison to the cost of an unwanted litter, the cost to spay or neuter is cheap. Puppies may be adorable but they aren’t born house-broken, can be destructive, and need lots of veterinary care.
There are so many benefits to having your dog spayed or neutered, and really no detractors. Dogs do not need a sex life and babies to be happy, they just need a loving home. They really just need YOU!!