Why Spay or Neuter?
The choice to spay or neuter your pet may be one of the most important decisions you make impacting their long-term health—and your wallet!
By spaying or neutering your pet, you’ll help control the pet homelessness crisis, which results in millions of healthy dogs and cats being euthanized in the United States each year simply because there aren’t enough homes to go around.
The average lifespan of spayed and neutered cats and dogs is demonstrably longer than the lifespan of those not. In a study conducted by Banfield Pet Hospitals on a database of 2.2 million dogs and 460,000 cats, their study showed that neutered male dogs lived 18% longer and spayed female dogs lived 23% longer. Spayed female cats in the study lived 39% longer and neutered male cats lived 62% longer.
Why is it good for my pet?
Medical Benefit to Spay/Neuter
- Your female pet will live a longer, healthier life. Spaying helps prevent uterine infections and breast tumors, which are malignant or cancerous in about 50 percent of dogs and 90 percent of cats. Spaying your pet before her first heat offers the best protection from these diseases.
- Neutering your male companion prevents testicular cancer and some prostate problems.
- Your spayed female pet won't go into heat. While cycles can vary, female felines usually go into heat four to five days every three weeks during breeding season. In an effort to advertise for mates, they'll yowl and urinate more frequently—sometimes all over the house! On average, female dogs go into heat twice yearly and will attached unwanted intake males on to your property and they don’t care how high your fences.
- Your neutered male may be better behaved.Unneutered dogs and cats are more likely to mark their territory by spraying strong-smelling urine all over the house. Your dog might be less likely to mount other dogs, people and inanimate objects after he’s neutered. Some aggression problems may be avoided by early neutering.
- Your dog or cat will be less likely to roam away from home. An intact male will do just about anything to find a mate, including finding creative ways escape from the house. Once he's free to roam, he could be hit by a car, get into fights with other male animals or get picked up by the county animal services.
Spay/Neuter is Affordable
- The cost of your pet's spay/neuter surgery is far less than the cost of having and caring for a litter.
- Caring for a pet with reproductive system cancer or pyometra can easily run thousands of dollars—five to 10 times as much as a routine spay or neuter surgery. In cases where intact dogs and cats may fight, treatment of their related injuries can also result in high veterinary costs.
When to Spay or Neuter ?
While the traditional age for neutering is six months, puppies and kittens as young as eight weeks old or 2lbs can be spay or neutered as long as they’re healthy.
Dogs: spay or neuter by 5 months of age. Your dog should have an easier time recovering from surgery due to their youthful age and at the same time, prevent unwanted medical and behavioral problems.
Cats: spay or neuter by 4 months of age. Surgery recovery is relatively quick when cats are young, first heat cycle can be avoided and male spraying may never happen.
Adult dogs and cats may be altered as well, although there’s a slightly higher risk of post-operative complications in older dogs, dogs that are overweight or dogs that have health problems.
It is entirely your choice on when to have your pet altered and we encourage you to talk with your veterinarian to determine the best time for spay or neuter.
Information provided by ASPCA & HSUS