There is a lot of information circulating about neutering / spaying dogs, but unfortunately there are many misconceptions. What is certain is that neutering / spaying cannot be talked about enough. In addition to the birth of unwanted puppies, your pet’s health may depend on whether or not you have him neutered.
You can read about these topics in our article:
• Why is neutering / spaying important?
• Neutering a male dog
• Spaying a female dog
• Laparoscopic neutering
• What should you do before neutering / spaying?
• What should the owner do after surgery?
• What are the benefits of neutering /spaying?
• What are the disadvantages of neutering / spaying?
Currently, the biggest animal welfare problem is the number of stray animals. Animal welfare organisations estimate this number to be in the millions. How is this possible?
In the absence of responsible animal husbandry and the corresponding neutering / spaying, most small towns and cities are already a breeding ground for unwanted breeding. Exiled, abandoned dogs and stray dogs from the garden join forces with other dogs of similar or orphaned breeds to create new populations. In addition to the failure to spay or neuter for financial reasons and ignorance, the scale of deliberate breeding is unfortunately immense.
If it is not a dog for breeding, there is no question about the importance of having this procedure done. Of course, it must be done in the right setting and under the right conditions so that your pet is not harmed.
Let’s see what it’s all about!
The dog intended for breeding must:
- be registered,
- be of a certain age,
- have undergone the necessary medical check-ups,
- have an approved breeding qualification in accordance with the breed standard.
In all other cases we are talking about breeding!
Why is neutering /spaying important?
If your dog doesn’t have a breedable certificate, and you’re probably not going to invest the time and effort to get it, it’s time to think about getting into the spaying and neutering business. There are a lot of misconceptions about this, which we’ll try to clear up. Later on, we’ll show you the benefits of neutering / spaying.
Misconception: female dogs must give birth before spaying.
Many people believe that a female dog must give birth at least once before spaying. The reasons for this are, of course, obscure, with some citing the natural order of things or the joys of motherhood. In any case, it is worth reflecting on the extent to which we have interfered with the natural order as a result of conscious selection, and on our responsibility towards our pets.
Calving your dog takes a lot out of you, not to mention the care of the puppies. If you’re thinking of breeding, it’s time to take stock of the stresses and strains involved. The obligatory vaccinations and worming and feeding the puppy until they are at least eight weeks old is your responsibility! You also have to find a suitable owner for the puppies. It’s worth remembering that a breeder who wants something for himself has a contract of sale and will follow up the puppy’s fate.
A pregnancy carries a lot of health risks, and unfortunately so does neutering if you put it off too long. Surely it can be seen that a young body is much less stressed by the procedure, and in their case the recovery process is reduced. The later you postpone the surgery, the greater the risk and the longer the recovery process. For this reason, you should not put off neutering your female dog for too long. And neutering an older dog is a longer process in terms of recovery and anaesthesia.
In a word, if you want to reduce health risks and ensure a longer life for your pet, don’t wait until he’s a mother.
Misconception: female dogs should be on heat at least once before spaying!
When to neuter / spay your dog ?
In some countries where neutering / spaying of young dogs (males and females) is common, larger case studies have been conducted to investigate the health effects of neutering at different ages.
In addition to the general development of the animals, the incidence of various behavioural problems, aggression, marking and preventable tumours, such as inflammation of the uterus, have been observed.
One of the main questions in the survey was when to neuter the dog.
The studies clearly showed that the optimal time to spay is before the onset of sexual maturity in both female and male dogs.
Misconception: male dog’s temperament changes after neutering.
Male dog’s behaviour after neutering
Many people say that they are afraid to spay or neuter a male dog because they are afraid that their pet’s personality will change. Calm down! He’ll be the same tough dog he was, his instincts will just be dampened. Why is this beneficial? For you, for example, because the chances of escape are greatly reduced, thus reducing the number of accidents and the number of new puppies that are abandoned.
In addition, you don’t have to worry about whether there’s a male dog or a female in the kennel that you can’t play with. After the male dog is neutered, your pooch can be a regular participant in runs, parks and dog events.
Why is it beneficial for him? You will eliminate the agony, insomnia and loss of appetite during female firing, as well as the possibility of prostate and testicular tumours, and a hernia of the gland.
There are also cases where a neutered male dog will mate. In such cases, of course, there is no need to worry about possible reproduction. In some dogs the instinct may remain, but rest assured, it will pass after the hormones have been depleted.
Misconception: neutered dogs will become obese.
In fact, neutering increases the risk of obesity. It is less well known that this risk factor is associated with the time of castration. The younger the dog at the time of the surgery, the less likely it is to be obese.
Otherwise, the problem is unfortunately very common in male animals and the risk can be eliminated by ensuring adequate exercise and diet. We recommend post-neuter feeding. These treats are made with a lower fat content to protect your pet from obesity.
Misconception: You’ll deprive your dog of much pleasure if you neuter him.
Another important thing to remember. Dogs are not human, they do not have a basic need for sexual satisfaction. Just as a “varied diet” is not a gastronomic experience for them, the desire to mate is an instinct. If you neuter him, you are not depriving him of anything and you are not causing him psychological harm. And you’re also getting rid of a mildly unpleasant thing. Do you know how a male dog behaves? I’m sure you’ve seen it before, so we won’t go into details.
But what is extremely stressful for him is when he’s been studding for years, breeding without being mated. In females, the breeding process can drag on for weeks and the “pooping” is a minor inconvenience compared to what your pet goes through. This is unnatural for the hormonal function as there is no fulfilment. No, as described above, taking on a litter of puppies is not the answer by any chance! Have him neutered early, ensure he has a long and healthy life. After neutering, your doggie is very likely to be free of any unpleasant symptoms and behaviour.
When you’re young, you may find it hard to see the risk of cancer. However, after the age of six or eight, the chances are high that it will happen and it will be much harder to manage.
Neutering a male dog
The first thing to consider before neutering your dog is the optimum time for neutering. Although neutering can be done at any age, the later it is postponed, the greater the chance that “male” behaviours will persist; interest in females, lunging, and aggression towards other cats. The risk of anaesthesia is also lower the younger the dog, so the ideal time is between 4-6 months of age!
Neutering for male dogs is also done under anaesthesia. This is not only necessary because of the pain associated with castration, which could be taken care of by a local anaesthetic. The dog must be completely relaxed before the surgery can be performed. This condition can only be achieved under anaesthesia. Therefore, in preparation for the surgery, it is not recommended to eat 12 hours before neutering. No fluids should be given to the dog for 2-3 hours beforehand.
Before the surgery, as with females, boars are subjected to a thorough medical examination and blood test. The vet will check the general health of the dog and any underlying diseases that may affect anaesthesia.
Prior to anaesthesia, the dog is sedated with medication to ensure that shaving and disinfection, i.e. preparing the dog for surgery, is stress-free. The puppy is then given an anaesthetic tube from which further medication and anaesthetic is administered. High-risk patients, i.e. dogs for which the risk of infusion anaesthesia is too high, are anaesthetised with an anaesthetic gas.
The surgery is carried out under constant monitoring, in better facilities with the latest technology, so you really don’t have to worry about your puppy. The procedure for neutering a male dog is as follows. The testicles are removed through a tiny incision in the scrotum, which is much less traumatic for them than for female dogs.
So, what can you expect? The loss of the flightiness to which he sometimes owes more than just his life. As well as exposing your pet to real risks of accidents during escapes (being hit by a car, beaten, poisoned, fighting with rivals), you also spare him from various infectious dog diseases or parasitoses.
He will also become more emotionally attached to you, his aggression will be reduced and he will no longer harass you, your family or friends with his unwanted “pestering”. You also don’t have to worry about the lecherous behaviour of a neutered dog. The chances of his ‘stalker’ nature being retained by your pet are reduced.
A male dog will not gain weight after neutering, and will not get bored if you pay attention! Of course, his energy needs from being male will decrease with his sexual activity, but with a grain-free diet, following the correct feeding guidelines, and ensuring his exercise needs are met, you shouldn’t have to worry about weight gain!
Trust us! Your pet’s condition and health really will be much better. After all, with this simple procedure, you can get rid of the disturbing symptoms of male dog behaviour in just a few clicks.
Spaying a female dog
Spaying at 4-6 months of age is accepted, but earlier spaying up to 3 months of age is also accepted. In the case of spaying a girl dog, as mentioned above, there is no reason to wait for the first heat or calving.
Remember! The most common type of tumour in females is mammary tumour, which is a malignant cancerous lesion with a 50% incidence! The chance of developing a tumour is influenced not only by the age and breed of the dog, but also by its sex and the time of spaying!
Spaying a female dog at five months of age reduces the chance of developing mammary gland tumours to 0.5%. While the same figure is 8% for spaying after the first litter and 26% between the second and third litter for un-spayed dogs.
Since the uterus swells during estrus, the immune system is weaker and the dog is more susceptible to bleeding, it is not recommended to operate at this stage, waiting until the end of the estrus.
If you can, do your research and ask around to find a normal and reliable practice. There are also some where only the fallopian tubes are tied, other veterinary hospitals insist on complete removal of the reproductive organs (ovaries, uterus). As an owner, it’s good to know that the first case may be a cause for concern, as unremoved ovaries can become infected and even cause fatal, pus-filled uterine infections. It is even possible for a dog to become infected after spaying. Unfortunately, this can happen if the ovary is left intact, but even a tiny piece of the ovary can cause a fire. We therefore recommend a procedure where all the reproductive organs are removed from the dog.
Laparoscopic neutering is very popular in the West. If you are put off neutering by the anaesthesia, surgery and recovery procedure and your dog’s pain, this method may be the perfect solution for you.
In contrast to the injection anaesthesia used in traditional neutering, laparoscopic neutering is performed under the state-of-the-art inhalation anaesthesia. It involves giving your dog an anaesthetic gas through a tracheal tube, the concentration of which can be controlled during surgery, making it safer than traditional anaesthesia. Wake-up calls are given immediately after the surgery under constant supervision.
Laparoscopic castration, performed with precision instruments, requires only one or two incisions of 5 mm or 1 cm in the abdominal wall, which is sufficient to remove the reproductive organs. A thin camera is inserted through one incision, while the actual surgery is performed through the other incision.
It is therefore questionable whether laparoscopic surgery is feasible for dogs weighing less than 10 kg. It is for the specialist veterinarian performing the surgery to decide.
This method may be unjustified in a healthy male dog, but it is the best option for a dog with hidden testicles!
Using precision instruments eliminates the need to open the abdominal cavity and there is no significant incision of the abdominal muscle. This significantly shortens both the recovery and the painful post-operative period.
The suture is done with absorbable thread, so the dog is spared the stress of the suture removal. Due to the size of the scar, there is no need to wear a protective collar or restrict activity.
What should you do before neutering?
Once you have decided to have your pet neutered and have found a reliable veterinary practice, you should consult the doctor. What you can do for your pet’s faster recovery is to focus on strengthening his immune system.
The specialist you will consult will give you all the details, but be prepared to have some work to do in the days before surgery. It is important that the dog you are neutering has no external injuries, if you fall into the fire, wait until it is over. Don’t give him food for 12 hours before the surgery, and if it’s not hot, don’t offer him water for 6 hours before the surgery.
It is advisable to time it so that you can be near your pet for the first two days after the surgery. This way you can intervene immediately in case of any complications. Your presence will also make this period easier and calmer for your pet. Remember, she loves you more than anything else in the world! This closeness will make the first days of recovery after neutering much easier for him.
What should the owner do after surgery? Care after neutering, symptoms after neutering
As the surgery is performed under general anaesthesia, be sure to wait until the dog is fully awake. If you leave your dog in the surgery, wait until the doctor calls you. Don’t be alarmed if he doesn’t respond as usual for a while, is groggy or drools. Keep him calm, give him room temperature, and if he is alert, give him water and food! If you feed raw meat, avoid bones for the first few days so that he doesn’t have to strain to defecate.
Post-neuter care, post-neuter symptoms
As the surgery is performed under general anaesthesia, be sure to wait until she is fully awake. If you leave your dog in the surgery, wait until the doctor calls you.
Don’t be alarmed if he doesn’t respond as usual for a while, is groggy or drools for a few hours. Keep him calm and at room temperature. Offer water and food only when he is able to walk on his own, alert and fully sober. For your female, limit wet food to two or three days, as the belly rubs associated with defecation are painful for her! If you feed raw meat, avoid bones until the stitches have been picked so that he doesn’t have to strain too much.
Especially in female dogs, it is common for their behaviour to change for days. You may even feel he is angry with you or “depressed” but think of the pain he may be in. To alleviate this, painkillers may need to be administered, as well as some antibiotics to help the wound heal. Of course, the vet will give you some of these, so all you need to do is dose as told.
After the procedure, during the healing process, you may notice some scrotal inflammation and swelling after the male dog has been neutered. If you notice swelling after neutering your male dog, go to the vet immediately! You may only need antibiotic treatment, or you may need surgery to reduce the swelling.
Large dogs are less likely to be picked up and cuddled, but small friends tend to be. In the days after surgery, definitely do not do this! Besides, it is not good for the dog to be lifted all the time, as it tightens the abdominal muscles and is forbidden after the surgery!
In the same way, no matter how unpleasant the “hospital smell” may be, do not bathe the dog until the stitches are removed! Wound exudation can be considered natural to a certain extent. This can be wiped away with a clean, damp cloth, but do not expose it to direct water jets or water, as it may become infected!
After we return home with him, we watch the dog. If you notice any ominous symptoms other than the natural stupor, mild drooling and lethargy, such as sudden onset of severe swelling around the wound, significant bleeding or fever, go to the vet immediately!
Also, if your dog is bleeding after neutering, see a vet immediately! It may be just a damaged suture, but there may also be internal bleeding.
A febrile condition can also be the cause of a lethargic behaviour and loss of appetite that lasts for days, and you should take your dog to the vet. A course of antibiotics should resolve the inflammation.
You will need to protect the scar until the stitches are removed, which is usually eight days after surgery. You can choose a collar to prevent your pet from accessing the wound. In addition to the classic plastic, there are now inflatable soft collars, which are much more comfortable for your four-legged friend to wear, as they are less restrictive to movement and vision, and your pet can’t sneakily use them to scratch the wound with their edges (yes, they can do that!).
There are now dog suits specifically recommended after neutering that act like a “kicker”. These allow your dog to move more freely without access to the stitches (and are quite cute!). It won’t be easy during this time, as none of the clothes are the most comfortable for him, but remember it’s only for a few days. It’s worth all the sacrifice.
Wound healing after castration
Normally, if you wear one of the above protective garments -and your pet doesn’t have access to it- the wound will heal beautifully on its own. Of course, there are also wound healing products that can be used to shorten the healing time.
What are the benefits of neutering / spaying?
Spaying female dogs not only avoids unwanted reproduction, but also has many other benefits. Let’s see what they are!
• The best thing about a female dog’s behaviour after spaying is that she no longer fires after the procedure, so there is no need to worry about her running away or luring male dogs around the house.
• The surgery significantly reduces the chances of developing mammary tumours and can also completely prevent ovarian cancer, tumours in the uterus and the often fatal pus-filled uterine inflammation.
• After spaying, the female dog is also relieved of the burden of the possibility of a false pregnancy, which is otherwise a very unpleasant experience for both of you.
• No more weeks of avoiding the dog run because of the firing! One of the benefits of this is that your dog is no longer confined to your company. Dogs that spend long periods of time without their own kind will find it harder to reintegrate into the dog community. As you know, he needs companionship too!
There are also many health benefits to neutering male dogs.
• Depending on the timing of neutering, the incidence of prostate problems in older age, as well as hormone-related diseases and hernias, can be significantly reduced or eliminated.
• The development of testicular tumours can also be completely avoided.
• Aggression towards other cans is significantly reduced.
• You don’t have to worry about him straying, losing his place at night, getting lethargic during the firing season.
What are the disadvantages of dog neutering / spaying?
Of course, it is very important to note that neutering / spaying dogs is a surgical procedure, so before you decide, make sure you know the process involved:
The procedure requires anaesthesia, which can of course be very stressful for the animal’s body. This is a very demanding procedure, especially if it involves an older dog or a dog with some sensitivities.
Naturally, when planning the neutering / spaying, your pet’s health will be assessed and your options will be adapted accordingly. While today’s veterinary medicine is very advanced and such surgery is indeed a runt surgery, you can also opt for an anaesthetic gas solution instead of the classic anaesthetic on the advice of your vet.
The chances of complications after neutering are very low. In our opinion, based on the information described so far, the following can be seen. There are much higher risks if you do not perform this surgery on your pet.
For male dogs, it is recommended to have the surgery done before sexual maturity even for the following reasons. Unfortunately, if the surgery is performed later, there is a chance that the male dog will be marked after neutering.
What should you do if you want to have your dog neutered / spayed?
Do your research, visit a vet you like, take your pet with you, along with its vaccination book. From then on, you can trust the professional, your only job is to follow his instructions.
What should you do if you don’t want to have your dog neutered / spayed?
You’re better off avoiding dog runs with your female in heat, but also keep an eye on your male dog at this time! If you keep your dog in a garden, make sure you build an escape-proof fence!
It is your responsibility to ensure that your dog does not breed and increase the population of ownerless dogs. Remember, shelters are full of these desperate dogs! People, volunteers, toil day in and day out because of one irresponsible keeper after another. Don’t be irresponsible, be a conscious dog owner yourself!
Q: What is neutering/spaying and why is it important?
A: Neutering/spaying refers to the surgical removal of a dog’s reproductive organs to prevent them from having puppies. It is important to prevent the birth of unwanted puppies and to promote the health and longevity of the pet.
Q: What are the benefits of neutering/spaying a dog?
A: Neutering/spaying can reduce the risk of certain health problems and prevent aggressive behavior. It can also reduce the risk of escape and accidents, as well as the number of new puppies that are abandoned.
Q: What are the disadvantages of neutering/spaying a dog?
A: There are no significant disadvantages of neutering/spaying a dog, as long as it is done in the right setting and under the right conditions.
Q: Is neutering/spaying necessary for a dog intended for breeding?
A: If a dog is intended for breeding, it must be registered, of a certain age, have undergone necessary medical check-ups, and have an approved breeding qualification in accordance with the breed standard. If the dog does not have a breedable certificate, neutering/spaying is recommended.
Q: Is it necessary for a female dog to give birth before spaying?
A: No, it is not necessary for a female dog to give birth before spaying. In fact, it is recommended to spay a female dog before the onset of sexual maturity to reduce the risk of health problems and aggressive behavior.
Q: When is the best time to spay a dog?
A: The best time to spay a dog is before the onset of sexual maturity, which is usually around 6-12 months of age for female dogs and around 8-10 months of age for male dogs.
Q: Will a male dog’s temperament change after neutering?
A: No, a male dog’s temperament will not change significantly after neutering. Neutering can dampen the dog’s instincts, reducing the risk of escape and accidents and preventing the formation of new puppies.
Q: What should an owner do before and after neutering/spaying their dog?
A: Before neutering/spaying, the owner should consult with a veterinarian to ensure that their pet is healthy enough for the procedure. After the surgery, the owner should follow their veterinarian’s instructions for care and recovery to ensure that their pet heals properly.
Q: What should an owner do after their pet has undergone neutering surgery?
A: After the surgery, the owner should wait until the pet is fully awake, keep the pet calm and at room temperature, and offer food and water only when the pet is alert and fully sober. It’s also important to keep an eye out for any ominous symptoms and to protect the scar until the stitches are removed.
Q: What can the owner expect in terms of the pet’s behavior after neutering surgery?
A: After the procedure, it is common for the pet’s behavior to change temporarily. They may appear “depressed” or in pain, and painkillers and antibiotics may need to be administered to alleviate this. The owner should also be aware of the healing process, which may include scrotal inflammation, swelling, and a febrile condition in the pet.
Q: What precautions should be taken to protect the pet’s wound after neutering surgery?
A: The owner should avoid lifting the pet and bathing it until the stitches are removed. They can protect the scar by using a collar or a dog suit, and should monitor the pet for any signs of bleeding, fever, or severe swelling around the wound. If any ominous symptoms are observed, the pet should be taken to the vet immediately.