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Cedar Grove Vets
Neutering

Neutering is a routinely performed operation, which stops dogs and cats producing off spring by surgically removing their reproductive organs under general anaesthetic.

In males it is called Castration and in females it is called Spaying. For males the operation is usually managed as a day procedure and often your pet will be able to return home the same evening as long as they are fully recovered from the anaesthetic. For females, an overnight stay is required after surgery for post op monitoring and pain relief.

Why should you neuter your pet?

There are many good reasons for this:

  • Primarily, it decreases the number of unwanted puppies and litters being born. Rescue shelters have many dogs and cats in urgent need of homes due to un-planned pregnancies, and sadly, many of these have been abandoned. Too many of them may unfortunately be destroyed.
  • There are proven health benefits for your pet. In males, diseases of the prostate gland and testicles including cancer can be reduced or eliminated. In females, the same applies to diseases and cancers of the ovaries breast tissue and womb. It also helps reduce the risk of diseases transmitted through fighting or other contact, e.g. feline Leukaemia of feline Infectious Virus.
  • Neutering reduces unwanted behaviour such as territorial aggression, fighting, mounting and the unpredictability of the animal when they are ‘in heat’ or can sense a female in heat in the neighbourhood. Female dogs may experience phantom pregnancies and jealously, guard ‘substitute’ puppies. Female cats may roll and cry is if in pain. Males may become territorial, mark their areas by inappropriate urination, fight and become destructive due to extreme frustration. Both males and females may be more prone to straying, in a desperate attempt to find a mate and sadly this can lead to the animal becoming lost or even injured.
  • Financially, people often underestimate the cost of having a litter of puppies or kittens. There maybe complications during pregnancy, including the possible need for a caesarean section, the cost of additional feeding for the mother and new born plus veterinary medications etc.

People sometimes feel it is unnatural or unkind not to let their pet have a litter. In reality, pets that are neutered early do not ‘miss’ the experience, and there is a good case for arguing that it may be more unkind to keep your pet “entire” or un-neutered and deny them the strong hormonally driven behaviour that nature drives them to try to express. Remember that although dogs and cats have been domesticated for many hundreds of years, there is a strong primal urge to reproduce, and we see many animals presented with behavioural or medical problems that could so easily have been prevented by neutering.

And think about it from you and your family’s point of view also – the hassle of a female coming into season for 3 weeks every six months. A female cat crying every 3 weeks during the mating season and attracting all the stray tomcats in the area to your garden.Your male cat spraying strong urine in your house and getting into many fights.

Your dog breaking out of the back garden and going missing in pursuit of a female.

All in all, neutering encourages calmer, more predictable behaviour, making your dog a more balanced, healthy family pet. It doesn’t change their ‘spirit’ and pets need not become obese after the operation (another common concern) if you adjust their diet and exercise accordingly.

Vets and nurses at Cedar Grove are only too happy to discuss any concerns you may have about weight gain, personality changes, or the surgical procedure itself, so please do ask us.

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