Are you thinking of having your dog spayed or neutered? You might be wondering about the benefits of this procedure. Here, our Glendale vets discuss how this operation can help encourage good health and behavior, and offer more benefits for you as a dog owner. 

What is spaying and neutering?

During a spaying procedure, a female dog's reproductive organs are removed, preventing them from having puppies. Neutering is a similar procedure for male dogs, during which the testicles are surgically removed to prevent them from impregnating a female dog with puppies. 

What are the benefits of spaying or neutering my dog?

Depending on the procedure, having your dog spayed or neutered yields many health benefits. Many dog owners also factor cost into their decisions. 

Benefits of Spaying Your Female Dog

Spaying your female dog offers several health benefits for your pup, and financial benefits for you. 

Health benefits of Spaying Your Dog 

Heat is a reproductive stage during which male dogs can be attracted to your dog for up to 18 days. Having this procedure done for your female dog before she enters heat for the first time can help her live a long, healthy life free from serious health issues such as uterine infections and breast tumors. 

Financial Benefits of Spaying Your Dog 

Preventing the birth of unwanted puppies saves you from investing significant time and money into caring for a pregnant dog and her puppies. While you'll need to pay a fee for the spaying procedure, it's much less costly than the expenses you would pay to care for a pregnant dog, calling a vet to supervise the birth of the puppies, and caring for newborns. 

Deciding Not to Spay Your Female Dog 

If this procedure is performed while your female dog is young, you'll prevent your pooch from going into heat. This reproductive stage may lead to unwelcome interactions with male dogs while she is on walks or in your yard, and it can also lead to unwanted litters of puppies. 

A female dog who is not spayed will typically go into heat every six months for about three to four weeks each time. During this timeframe, she will excrete a bloody vaginal discharge and may seem clingy, edgy, or jumpy. 

Benefits of Neutering Male Dogs

Similar to spaying, neutering your male dog offers several health benefits for your pup, and financial benefits for you. You will also help to reduce the population of unwanted dogs in the United States.

Health Benefits of Neutering Your Dog

Having your male dog neutered at an early age can prevent testicular cancer and prostate problems, which can be serious. Neutering also prevents perineal tumors and hernias, and reduces the risk of your dog escaping your property to find a mate, which can result in fights with other dogs and traffic accidents.

Behavioral Benefits of Neutering Your Dog

Neutering can potentially decrease behaviors like mounting and aggression toward other dogs. It can also help control your male dog’s urge to wander.

Deciding Not to Neuter Your Dog

Unneutered male dogs may exhibit unwanted behaviors such as aggressiveness, marking their territory by urinating inside the house, or mounting other dogs or people.

When to Get Your Puppy Fixed

Puppies are usually spayed or neutered when they are between five and nine months old. Even adult dogs can undergo this procedure. It's best to consult your veterinarian to determine the appropriate time to get your dog spayed or neutered.

What to Expect When Getting Your Puppy Fixed

Your veterinarian will give you detailed instructions before your pet's surgery. These instructions will include guidelines for restricting your pet's food and water before the scheduled procedure.

Once the surgery is done, your vet will provide you with instructions to help your dog recover comfortably. Depending on the timing of the procedure, your dog may also receive pain medication to take home. In general, female dogs take longer to recover from spaying compared to male dogs after neutering.

After a female dog is spayed, she cannot have puppies as she becomes sterile. Please keep in mind that male dogs are not immediately sterile after neutering. It can take up to 6 weeks for them to be considered safely sterile.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding people or pets. Always follow your doctor's advice regarding asthma or other allergy symptoms.

Do you have more questions about the spaying and neutering procedure for dogs? Contact us today to schedule a consultation.