Dogs are the old companion of human beings. They are loveable, faithful, and friendly animals and courageous and loyal family guards. They have a very high level of intelligence and can be fiercely protective of their owner.
With Canis lupisfamiliaris being the scientific name for a dog, they are of various types – for example, hound, sporting, working, terrier, toy, non-sporting, and herding. The most observed habits of almost all these types are burying their food, chasing their tails, and licking people’s faces.
Most dogs bark only to grab other people’s attention or to signal danger. They eat meat because they are carnivores and prey on small rabbits, worms, insects, and birds, but they sometimes eat grass. The grass is a fiber and helps digestion of food and passing of feces without much struggle.
When you have a dog, you deal with many issues like vaccinating, admitting to daycare, taking them to behavior therapists, etc. One such issue is spaying them. This article will discuss everything that may be concerning you about spaying your dog. We will discuss why you should spay your dog, the appropriate age you should spay them at, and how it benefits them. Let’s get started!
Why Should You Spay Your dog?
Most dog breeders practice spaying their pets to avoid the battle of pet overpopulation. Spaying is the commonly used term to describe the surgical procedure known as an ‘ovariohysterectomy.’ In this procedure, the ovaries and testicles are removed completely to sterilize a female dog. Some veterinarians now prefer ovariectomy, in which only ovaries are removed.
It is a painful process for your little pet. However, most skin incisions completely heal after 10-15 days but do not allow your pet to bathe or swim during these days. Once the veterinarian removes the stitches, you may allow them to do whatever they want.
When Should You Spay a Dog?
Several conditions tell you that your dog needs spaying, related to health, abnormal behavioral changes, and age. According to a study in America, 78% of pets are spayed for one of these reasons. We will discuss them in the following; however, it is always advisable to consult a veterinarian before initiating the procedure.
Although sex hormones are important for the development of animals but some dogs, neutering is associated with an increased risk of certain health conditions such as lymphoma, some cancers, joint disorders, elbow dysplasia, etc. In that case, spaying becomes necessary.
Abnormal Behavioral Changes
If your dog shows different abnormal signs, you should not take long to understand that this is the right time for spaying. These abnormal behavioral changes may be the following:
- Female dogs start roaming around in search of male
- Your dog may show signs of aggression
- Frequent urination
Interestingly different breeds and different-sized dogs reach maturity at different ages. Therefore, there isn’t any set age at which you should spay your dog, and much of it would depend on the dog’s breed.
If a dog belonging to a breed reaches puberty at 6-8 months, she may be considered fit for spaying. Likewise, if a dog hailing from another breed reaches its maturity at 16-18 months, it may be considered fit for spaying at this age.
Neutering in Male Dogs
This procedure often occurs at a very early age for a dog (4-6 months), but this may not be the best age to do this. Small male dogs do not have many orthopedic issues, so it is better to spay them at the age of 6-12 months, but large dogs are prone to diseases, so it is recommended to neuter them at the age of 9-18 months.
Neutering in Female Dogs
This depends on the signs of sexual maturity. Some female dogs show signs of maturity at 9-12 months, but some show signs early, around six months. Studies have shown that large female dogs should be spayed at six months, while some breeds get this procedure done at nine months.
In many countries, dogs are spayed before six months due to their first heat season. This is known as ‘prepubertal.’ But the exact time will depend on her cycle. It is important not to spay a female dog during her first season, called the ‘dioestrus period.’
Spaying a bitch is also riskier during false pregnancy, so when planning to spay a dog, consideration should be given to the breed, lifestyle, and age of a dog.
What are the Advantages of Spaying?
- Prevention of uterine infection
- Elimination of risk of uterine and ovarian cancer
- Prevention of breast cancer
- Prevention of heat or estrus
- Aid in treating diabetes
Before surgery, owners should be calm and relaxed because pets sense their owner’s emotions quickly and get nervous too. Do not give any food or water before surgery. It will take two weeks to recover the dog. Spaying bitches reduces some undesired behavior problems caused by the heat cycle, but there is no guarantee that a dog’s behavior will change after spay surgery.
Spaying pets reduce the unwanted population of animals. One benefit is that it significantly decreases the chances of getting potential diseases like cancers or joint problems. Health, behavior changes, and age are important factors before spaying. Contact your breeder or veterinarian immediately if you see any abnormality in your dog. With an owner and doctor’s support, your dog will heal quickly in no time and will be in good health.