A report released by The American Humane Society stated that animal shelters across the country euthanize 2.4 million healthy dogs and cats each year due to pet overpopulation. However, you can help lower this statistic by spaying or neutering your pet. Also, you can help prevent other serious health problems, and prevent problematic behaviors that can occur in both intact male and female pets.
Benefits of Spaying
Intact female dogs usually go into heat every six months or twice a year, starting anytime after 5-6 months of age. However, your dog's breed could indicate a different heat cycle timeline. Smaller breeds may consistently go through 2 heat cycles a year, while a large breed dog may only have 1 heat cycle a year. An intact female cat may go through several heat cycles each year, starting at approximately 5-6 months of age. A cat becomes fertile well before she reaches one year old.
Spaying, also known as an Ovariohysterectomy, is when a female cat or dog's reproductive organs are surgically removed under anesthesia. This includes the uterus, ovaries, and fallopian tubes. This surgery can prevent a severe infection of the uterus known as a pyometra. Spaying can also prevent a female dog or cat from developing mammary (breast) tumors, especially if performed at an early age.
Benefits of Neutering/Castrating
Neutering or castration, also known as Orchiectomy, is when both testicles are removed to make a male pet unable to reproduce. Both dogs and cats can engage in aggressive and roaming behavior, when they have not yet been neutered. The aggressiveness can surprise their human family, especially when their dog attempts to bite or even act in a sexual manner towards people. Intact male cats and dogs will also spray their urine to mark a territory as their own. This odor is not only extremely unpleasant, it can be difficult to eliminate as well.
Neutering will help control the breeding instinct, and make your pet less likely to want to roam. Also, it can help prevent serious health issues including prostate enlargement and testicular tumors. Neutering can help reduce or eliminate undesirable behaviors that are caused by having a high level of testosterone. This includes fighting, roaming, inappropriate mounting, and excessive marking of his territory . However, certain learned behaviors may still be present post surgery.
When Should Your Pet Be Spayed or Neutered.
There are many factors that go into determining when your pet should be fixed. Your pet's health, age, and breed will indicate when this procedure should be performed. Ask our veterinarians when the best time would be to spay or neuter your pet.
Call Seneca Animal Hospital, at (716) 652-6120, with any questions you have about spaying or neutering your pet(s).