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If you’ve recently added a puppy to your life, you’ll soon be faced with the question of whether or not to spay or neuter them. The choice to spay or neuter your puppy is entirely up to you, but pet owners should understand all of the information about the procedure before reaching their final decision.
Most pet owners are familiar with the process of spaying and neutering and understand that the procedure removes sexual organs from dogs. While spaying and neutering your pet does serve the function of preventing your dog from procreating, there are also a number of other additional health benefits to your pet having the procedure.
This article will provide pet owners with the benefits of spaying and neutering their dog so that they can make an informed and calculated decision.
What are Spaying and Neutering?
Spaying and neutering are the gender-specific procedures that sterilize animals by removing their reproductive organs. The procedure is very common and encouraged by vets for pet owners of both dogs and cats. Spaying refers to the procedure done to female animals, while neutering refers to the procedure done to male animals.
Spaying, sometimes called an ovariohysterectomy, is a surgical procedure performed by veterinarians to sterilize female animals. While the dog is put under general anesthesia, the surgeon removes the dog’s uterus and both ovaries through an incision made in her abdomen.
Neutering, or castration, is the surgical removal of the male dog’s testes. Like spaying, neutering is performed while the dog is under anesthesia. Comparatively, the procedure is simpler than a spay. An incision is made near the front of the scrotum, and then the testicles are removed through that incision.
Benefits of Spaying and Neutering
Preventing Unplanned Puppies
Raising a puppy is a joy, but it also can be a taxing experience for a pet owner. Pet owners have to make financial, time, and energy commitments when raising a puppy. If a pet owner is not prepared to go through that again or is not prepared to effort to find a good home to a litter of puppies, spaying and neutering relieves them of the possibility of puppies.
If your female dog is unspayed, she will go into heat for several weeks once or twice a year. Each time she does, she’ll be very alluring to male dogs—who can smell the scent from long distances. This can bring unwanted canine visitors to your yard and then before you know it you have a pregnant dog.
Likewise, if you have an unneutered dog, he does everything he can to get loose and find a female in heat. If he gets loose, a fellow dog owner may be in for a puppy surprise. If he can’t get out, he’ll be very uncomfortable.
For your female puppy, spaying helps prevent uterine infections and breast cancer. Each condition poses a serious threat to female dogs and often are fatal. The best way to prevent these diseases for your furry little girl is to have her spayed before she enters her first heat.
For your male pup, neutering prevents testicular cancer. It also cuts their urge to roam to find a female dog in heat. The less likely your male dog is to go exploring outside of the confines of your yard, the safer he’ll be from unforeseen dangers.
Help Fight Pet Overpopulation
America is facing a significant pet overpopulation problem, as sanctuaries and shelters throughout the country are overpopulated. Every year, millions of cats and dogs of all ages and breeds are euthanized or become homeless and live as strays. These devastating numbers are largely the result of unplanned litters that could have been prevented by spaying or neutering.
You’ll have to cough up a bit of money to have your puppy spayed or neutered on the front end, but long term the decision is very cost-effective for pet owners. The cost of the procedure is dwarfed in comparison to veterinary care that a pregnant dog requires and the cost of raising a litter of puppies. Also, the diseases and conditions that a dog faces are increased without being spayed or neutered, which may also lead to hefty veterinary bills.
Pet Insurance Covers Spaying and Neutering
With all the physical and behavioral benefits your dog receives from being spayed or neutered and the financial and societal benefits you receive by having your dog spayed or neutered, you’ll likely want to have the procedure done to your new puppy.
If you’re worried about the short term financial cost of spaying and neutering, considering getting pet insurance for your puppy. The procedures of spaying and neutering are covered by most policies. Learn more about the benefits dog owners receive by providing their dog with pet insurance.