What is neutering?
Neutering is the name for a veterinary procedure which
offers animals a permanent solution for birth control. It may also be known as spaying, castrating,
desexing, fixing or sterilizing.
What are the benefits of neutering?
Neutering is one of the most responsible and kindest actions
you can provide for your pet, family and the community.
?Neutering improves your pets health by reducing or
eliminating the risk of certain cancers and other diseases.
?Neutering usually reduces urine marking, sexual aggression,
mounting and other troublesome behaviours.
?Population control – In any one year over 100,000 dogs will
become homeless and there are over 25 million stray cats in the UK at any one
When should I get my pet neutered?
As soon as your pet is old enough, get him or her
neutered! Cats generally come into
season at about 6 months of age. Cats,
of course, are difficult to contain if outside, and they are quick to escape
the home when they want to be!
The age at which a bitch is likely to have her first season
will depend on what breed she is. The
smaller breeds tend to come into season at a younger age than the larger
ones. Your vet can discuss with you the
pros and cons of letting her have a season before spaying your bitch so that
you are able to make an informed decision.
Timing is important as the procedure in bitches, should not be performed
whilst she is having a season.
What is the procedure?
In female animals, spaying involves surgery to remove the
ovaries and uterus. Although it is an
operation that we routinely perform, it is still a major procedure and as such
demands the care and attention we attach to it here at this practice.
Your pet will need to have a general anaesthetic, therefore
you will be asked not to feed her after 8.00pm the evening prior to the
operation. The operation is performed
during the morning so that she has plenty of time to sleep off the anaesthetic
before she goes home, usually after 4.00pn that same afternoon. Most pets are up and alert shortly after
surgery, and for neutered patients, most are back to their ‘normal’ self by the
next day. You may need to restrict
activity in those pets who are very active and to control excessive licking of
the surgical site for a few days afterwards.
You will also need to take your pet for a post-surgery check-up and to
have their stitches removed.
In male animals, castration involves the removal of the
testicles and is commonly practised on household pets. Although it is a less invasive procedure than
for females, it still requires a general anaesthetic and so your pet will have
to spend the day at the veterinary clinic. There are a number of alternatives
to castration if you are hesitant to put your pet through surgery and your vet
will be happy to discuss them with you.
Myths and facts around neutering.
You may be told that your pet will get fat once they have
been neutered. This is just not
true. The only reason a dog or cat
becomes fat (or a human for that matter) is because it is eating more than it
needs and the excess energy is stored as fat.
We see as many overweight entire animals as neutered ones. A sensible diet will prevent your pet from
Some people believe that it is better to let their pet
either mate or have a litter first but medical evidence indicates just the
opposite. In fact, the evidence shows
that females spayed before their first heat are typically healthier. Reproduction is a biological event in cats
and dogs – they do not yearn for a family in the way humans do.