The Truth about Spaying and Neutering your Pet
by NW Vet Staff
There are many reasons why having your pet spayed or neutered is good for you, the community, and your pet. The biggest reason is because you can save lives.
By having your pet spayed or neutered you can help to fight overpopulation. 2.7 million homeless dogs and cats are euthanized each year in the US. By altering your pets, you can dramatically reduce the number of unwanted litters and stray animals in the streets.
Having the surgery done early in your pet’s life can also ensure better behavior. Neutered pets are less likely to run amok and fight with other animals and can decrease the urge to mark their territory. Which means less messy clean up and odors as well as decreased chance of costly injury.
When pets are spayed or neutered they have decreased risk of long term health issues, such as urinary and prostate issues as well as many types of cancer.
About the procedure
Both procedures are done under anesthesia with close monitoring and pain medication for recovery. It is recommended to have a full exam and bloodwork done before the procedure to ensure your pet is healthy prior to anesthesia.
- Spay: To “Spay” a female animal (ovariohysterectomy) means to remove her ovaries and uterus so that she will not become pregnant.
- Neuter: “Neuter” can refer to either sex but generally refers to male animals. The procedure is to remove the testicles so that he cannot reproduce.
Myths about altering your pets
- My dog or cat will feel like less of a “man.”
Some people believe that pets need to be intact to have a full life, but in truth, dogs and cats do not have any concept of gender ego and neutering them will not change their basic personality.
- It’s better to let my pet have a litter before spaying her.
Medical evidence suggests that females spayed earlier than their first heat are typically healthier.
- I shouldn’t alter my pet because it is purebred.
At least 1 in 4 pets brought to shelter are pure bred and about half of all animals are euthanized due to overpopulation.
- It's expensive to have my pet spayed or neutered.
Your pet’s overall health is typically better if they are altered early in life which can decrease the cost of vet bills overall for other health issues. Low-cost spay/neuter options are available in our area if needed for stray animals.
Making the decision to spay and neuter your pets can help you and your pets live happier lives together.
Call with additional questions or to schedule
Broadway Animal Hospital, Everett (425)252-8266