Spaying or neutering your pet can be the best decision you make for their long-term welfare. These surgical procedures will not only prevent health and behavioral problem in your pet but will also help control the pet homelessness crisis.

According to Humane Society of United States, about 2.4 million healthy, adoptable cats and dogs—about one every 13 seconds—are put down in U.S. shelters each year. These animals are not the offspring of homeless street animals, rather these are the puppies and kittens of cherished family pets. Spay/neuter is a proven way to reduce more wandering stray pets, ensuring that every pet has a family to love them.

What is Spaying or Neutering?

Spaying is a general term used to describe removing the ovaries and uterus of a female animal. Neutering is a general term used to describe removing the testicles of your male animal.  Both are surgical treatments and can be done by a qualified veterinarian. These treatments are also sometimes referred to as “sterilizing” or “fixing” pets.

Spay or Neuter Pet

Benefits of Spaying or neutering your pet?

Spaying or neutering your pet does more than just preventing canine overpopulation problem, you ensure that them a happy life, a longer life and not to forget a healthier life.

  • Spaying females eliminate the risk of uterine infections and breast cancer, which are malignant or cancerous in about 50 percent of dogs and 90 percent of cats.

  • Spaying your pet prior her first heat cycle will devoid her of the mating heat crying syndrome which lasts an average of 6 to 12 days, twice a year.

  • Spaying eliminates the risk of pregnancy and attracting unwanted male pet to your home.

  • Neutering males prevent testicular cancer and enlargement of the prostate gland and greatly reduces their risk for perianal tumors.

  • Neutering reduces your pet’s desire to roam away from home, fight with other male animals, mark the furniture with urine or behave aggressively.

  • Spaying and neutering make your pet a better, more affectionate companion and less likely to bite.

Right age to Spay or Neuter your pet

While some shelters and vet recommend the surgery to be done when young as 6 to 8 weeks of age. Six to nine months of age is the standard recommendations of most veterinarians to spay or neuter pets. At this age, the pet is a good size, the owners have trained and accepted them, develop less obesity, and the anesthesia and surgery are usually safe. However, your female pet must be spay before her first heat cycle, as it lowers the risk of mammary tumor.

The Surgery

Spaying or neutering your pets is also highly cost-effective. The cost of your pet's spay or neuter surgery is relatively inexpensive than the cost of providing adequate care for a litter. In addition, many communities offer lower licensing fees and other benefits for spayed or neutered companion animals.

If properly medicated, your pets won’t experience any discomfort or pain, as they are completely anesthetized during the surgery. Your vet provides with pre and post-operative instruction for you to follow. In general, if all the procedures performed well, your pet may be sent home within a day or two with some medication for pain.

Post Operative Tips for safe and comfortable recovery:

  • Limit your pet’s activity and keep them indoors away from other animals for a couple of days to allow healing to begin.

  • Stop your pet from running and jumping for up to two weeks following surgery, or as long as your vet recommends.

  • Check the surgery site daily for swelling redness or pulled stitches to confirm proper healing.

  • Prevent your pet from licking the surgery site, which may cause infection, by distracting your pet with treats or chews.

  • Avoid bathing your pet for at least ten days after surgery.

Don’t worry spaying or neutering won’t change your pet for the worse. It’s a myth that after sterilizing pet’s become overweight. Rather, lack of exercise and overfeeding causes your pet to gain extra pounds.

At what age did you spay or neuter your dog? Tell us in the comments.