Should I have my cat or dog spayed or neutered?

Should I have my cat or dog spayed or neutered?

Are you wondering whether you should neuter or spay your pet? Here are a few of the many reasons why getting your pets spayed and neutered is better for your pet as well as for the general pet population:

Preventing pet overpopulation and unwanted pregnancies:

Pet overpopulation is a serious problem. Animal shelters become overcrowded and are unable to care for the millions of homeless pets in the United States. Sadly, not enough people adopt their pets from shelters to help ease the crowding. According to the ASPCA approximately 2.7 million unwanted pets are euthanized in the United States each year. Many of these deaths could have been prevented by more people neutering and spaying their pets. Female cats can breed two to three times a year and have an average of 4 kittens per litter. Dogs can breed once or twice a year with litters of 4 – 10 puppies. In just seven years, one unspayed female cat and her offspring can produce 420,000 kittens. One unspayed female dog and her offspring can produce 97,000 puppies. 6-8 million dogs and cats are waiting in shelters across the country. Every home found for one of your pet’s offspring takes a home away from an animal waiting in a shelter. There are not enough loving homes for all the cats and dogs in the United States. In essence, fixing your pet ultimately makes the world a better place. You may think that keeping your pet away from other intact animals will prevent pregnancy, however unwanted pregnancies are incredibly common. An intact male can detect a female in heat miles away and will go to any length including running miles and combing fences to get to her.

Better behavior

Neutered and spayed pets generally have less behavior problems. Fights between intact pets are common and can be serious, causing deep wounds and transmitting deadly diseases. Neutered males tend to be less aggressive to both animals and people. Neutered males will not mark their territory (urinate all over your house) like intact males. Spayed cats will not vocalize excessively when in heat. Neutered and spayed pets will not get lost and roam trying to find a mate like intact pets will.

Better health

Spayed and neutered pets are healthier. Intact male dogs can have a number of diseases of the prostate including cysts, abscesses and enlargement. Neutering your dog prevents these problems.
Neutering your dog eliminates the risk of testicular cancer. Spayed dogs and cats will not get a condition called Pyometra, which is a life threatening infection of the uterus that requires emergency surgery and hospital care to treat if caught in time. Spaying your dog at a young age also virtually eliminates the risk of mammary cancer. Spaying and neutering your pet will keep them healthier and save you more money on veterinary bills.

Megan Hughes, DVM

Call us today for an appointment to have your pet spayed or neutered.