Spay or Neuter for a Healthier, Happier
A spay is the general term applied to removal of a
female's reproductive organs (uterus and ovaries). A neuter or castration is the general term
applied to the removal of the male's testicles. At Aurora Hills Animal Hospital, we advocate for sterilization surgery
for our patients as part of their puppy/kitten wellness plan. We discuss the procedure at the 16 week wellness
consultation and generally recommend that the surgery be performed between the
6th and 8th month.
Both procedures are outpatient procedures in that your
pet will go home the day of surgery. He
or she may be a little tired for a day and will need to restrict their
activity for several days, but with pain medication and some extra snuggles,
they will be back to normal within a few weeks.
There are several health and behavior reasons to spay or
neuter your pet:
1. A spayed female will not be capable of estrus or "heat" so you will not have to worry about unwanted males harassing her, her
wanting to roam, or the bloody discharge associated with estrus.
2. A spayed female cannot develop a pyometra. This is an infection of the uterus that is
trigger by the hormones of estrus. Very
rarely are they responsive to medication. Without prompt surgical attention to remove the infected uterus, the
majority of pets die.
3. A female spayed before she ever experiences
estrus will have virtually no risk of developing breast cancer which is
otherwise frequently seen in unspayed females.
4. A spayed female also cannot develop reproductive
cancers (ovarian, uterine) since those organs have been removed and has a lower
risk of cervical cancer.
5. A male neutered prior to sexual maturation has a
lower incidence of developing undesirable habits such as: roaming, urine marking, and aggression. Once these behaviors start, neutering will
have very little effect on elimination them.
6. A neutered male may be less likely to develop an
enlarged prostate in his senior years.
7. Spaying and neutering eliminates the risk of
accidental breedings which are the biggest factor in pet overpopulation.
Please feel free to contact us with any concerns you may have regarding these procedures. Our doctor is always glad to consult with you to plan the best approach for your pet.