In light of all the pups who have recently arrived I thought that we would deal with the benefits and myths of sterilizing your dogs!
The biggest benefit of course is that the animals can no longer breed and multiply, thereby the stray animal population eventually decreases. This means that The SPA would no longer be saturated and our adolescent and more mature dogs would have a greater chance of being adopted!
Sterilizing animals eliminates the desire to find a mate. This means fewer animals running off or wandering into traffic; chasing or biting people or their pets. Loose dogs also toilet whenever and wherever they like so as well as looking unsightly the risk of disease would lesson. A cleaner, happier and healthier environment for us all!
The health benefits for both the male and females are numerous. As far as disease is concerned, it certainly reduces the risks of mammary tumors and ovarian cancer in females and if you neuter a female dog prior to puberty, she has an almost zero risk of developing breast cancer.
Male dogs, too, may benefit, with the risk of testicular cancer eliminated – and rates of prostatic cancer reduced. From a behavioral standpoint, sterilization may reduce aggression toward other dogs, territorialism, and roaming, which can in turn protect dogs from the risk of injury associated with those behaviors, such as fights and getting hit by cars. Neutered males, particularly males who were neutered before puberty, are less likely to exhibit inappropriate urine-marking as well.
So why don’t people sterilize their pets?
Some say it’s the cost but really there are a lots of myths about sterilization: Here are a few:
-My dog is a male! – This comment normally comes from men! In addition to the benefits listed above, dogs conceive purely on biological instinct and don’t feel deprived by sterilization, but a dog that is not sterilized will suffer from extreme frustration if it scents a female in season and cant get to her. The result of this could easily lead to behavior problems and even reactive behavior – you are stopping the dog from following its natural instinct – to propagate the breed.
-All female dogs should be allowed to have one litter before sterilization. False. There are absolutely no health benefits by allowing this at all. In actual fact female dogs that are sterilized before the first heat cycle have much lower risks of developing mammary cancers.
-You should always let a female have one heat period before sterilization. False.The only thing allowing a bitch to have one session may accomplish, is the possibility of an unwanted pregnancy!
-It will change my dog’s personality. Dog owners tend to accord anthropomorphic properties to their pets and feel that a neutered dog will somehow be less “manly” and a spayed bitch will only be interested in eating all day. This is not true. Castration does not affect a dog’s nature; he retains his playful instincts.
-Sterilization will make my dog fat. False, although the lower average metabolic rate of sterilized dogs will make it easier for some dogs to gain weight, this can be eliminated by cutting the daily food intake by about 15% subsequent to the sterilization procedure. Remember, sterilization will not make your dog fat – too much food and not enough exercise will make your dog fat!
-Undergoing sterilization is dangerous. As with all procedures that require an aesthetic, there is always a degree of risk, but if the procedure is undertaken by a licensed vet, the routine sterilization procedure is actually less dangerous and stressful than the complications that could happen in pregnancy.
So no more excuses, no more letting someone else take responsibility, please just sterilize you dogs!