How does dog spaying or neutering impact the health and wellbeing of my pet?

Spays and neuters for dogs are very beneficial in preventing certain diseases. For example, female dogs can get something called a pyometra. It's an infection of their uterus. Male dogs, if they're left intact, can have prosthetic issues in which they have trouble urinating, et cetera. And then there’s the obvious benefit of limiting their ability to reproduce.

Dr. Lander
Advanced Animal Care in Richmond

How soon should I bring in my pet to get spayed or neutered?

We recommend doing so at about six months to a year.

What are the possible conditions that can be helped by spaying or neutering my dog?

As I said earlier, pyometra, or the infection of the uterus, is an emergency. What can happen is the uterus fills with pus. It's pretty gross. And they can go septic and get very sick because of that.

Male dogs, as I said, can have really severe prostate issues where they have trouble urinating. Unwanted pregnancies and unplanned pregnancies are worrisome as well.

What will my veterinarian need to know about my dog before spaying or neutering?

Age is a really important one, so hopefully, you have an idea of the age of your pet. We can possibly determine that on a physical exam within a certain amount of time. But they’ll also want to know where you are in terms of activity level at home. How's the recovery going to be? And then, they’ll ask what your goals are for that animal—whether or not you do want to breed or not.

How long will it take for my dog to recover from being spayed or neutered?

Typically two to three weeks.

What care should I be prepared to provide at home while my dog is recovering from their surgery?

Activity restriction is really important to make sure that the incision doesn't dehisce. This is where the sutures can break open. Unfortunately, that's a situation you'll have to deal with using surgery...again. And then also, you'll want to ensure that the animal isn't licking or rubbing at the incision site. That can cause infection. Those are some things to look out for and be cognizant of at home.

If you still have other questions and you'd like to reach out to us, you can call us directly at (859) 202-3641, you can email us, or you can reach out on Facebook. But please do reach out, and we'll get back to you as fast as we can.

Dog Spaying and Neutering - FAQs

Dr. Lander
Advanced Animal Care in Richmond

How are dog neuter surgeries performed?

When dogs come in for neuter surgery, they're prepared in a very aseptic way. We clip and clean everything to prepare them for surgery. They're under anesthesia. So it is a pretty serious event in that way. But at the end of the day, neuters are nice because you don't go into the abdomen as you do for a spay for a female.

How our dog spays performed?

Female dogs are prepared in the same way that I described it for a neuter; it's a very aseptic technique, making sure everything's clipped and cleaned and they're anesthetized, but you do go into the abdomen for female spays.

Will the spay or neuter be painful for my dog?

So the actual process itself shouldn't if they're anesthetized, and pain management should be regulated well during that procedure. Postoperatively, however, we'll often send home anti-inflammatories to help with the inflammation and the pain.

Are there any complications to a spay or neuter surgery?

There can be, especially with neuter surgeries. Sometimes you'll get what's called a scrotal hematoma, where blood kind of builds up in the scrotum. With spays, there are certain vessels that should be ligated or tied off. And sometimes those can come off and there may be some bleeding that way. As a whole, though, complications are pretty minimal.

How long does a spay or neuter take?

Spays can take anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour and a half, depending on the size and maturity of the dog. A neuter surgery is usually a little shorter because, as I mentioned, you're not going into the abdomen—so that takes about 30 minutes to an hour.

What are some misconceptions about the spay, neuter process?

Some misconceptions you may hear, especially with neutering is, "Hey, we're taking away his masculinity." That's not true at all. Male dogs don't really have that concept. As for females and males, sometimes the metabolism and their ability to gain weight easily might be slightly altered. We'll say this might have some part in it as a whole though. What it takes from you as the owner is feeding them appropriate quantities of food at home and exercise to help limit that weight gain.

If you still have other questions and you'd like to reach out to us, you can call us directly at (859) 202-3641, you can email us, or you can reach out on Facebook. But please do reach out, and we'll get back to you as fast as we can.

Dog Spaying and Neutering - FAQs 2

Dr. Sarah Crank
Advanced Animal Care - Waco

Does my dog have to be spayed or neutered?

They don't have to be. If you don't do it, there are some implications that can come along with it, regarding some responsibility on your part, and also some health issues that can occur later on down the road.

Why is spaying or neutering so important?

It really can help to decrease the overpopulation problem that we are dealing with. Shelters are absolutely full of animals right now, both dogs and cats, whether they are mixed breed or purebred. We are seeing many shelters being overrun and dogs being euthanized, simply because they can't find a home. By spaying your dog, you are helping to decrease that overpopulation problem. You're also helping to reduce problems regarding your own dog's health later on down the road, especially concerning pyometra, which is an infected uterus, and even some types of mammary tumors that can occur as well. As far as neutering goes, the same token. You are preventing the issue of overpopulation. Males do contribute to that problem as well, even though they're not the ones having the puppies. But we can see some prostate issues with them later on that can be prevented by neutering them.

Should I let my dog have a litter before I spay her?

It's not recommended. Again, regarding the overpopulation problem, we don't really need more unwanted puppies. If you choose to have your dog get pregnant and have a litter of puppies, be responsible. Make sure that you do have secure financially stable homes for those puppies to go into. But as far as the dog needing to have a litter goes, it's not going to benefit her health or her behavior. Dogs aren't born with that maternal instinct where they have to have puppies. If they never have puppies, they can still be just as content with life.

My dog urinates all over the house. Will spaying or neutering help?

As far as spaying goes, that's not normally something we see in female dogs. In males, it is a territorial marker; something that they have ingrained from way back when. So, by neutering them, you are going to lessen the chances of that happening. If you wait to neuter them later on in life, it is already an ingrained behavior that they are now going to do. Getting them neutered early on does decrease the chances of that happening.

Will spaying or neutering my dog prevent future illnesses?

It can. Things like cancers, pyometras (infected uteruses) and prostate issues in males can be affected by the age at which you spay or neuter your dog. Ultimately, some of those can be fatal.

If you still have other questions and you'd like to reach out to us, you can call us directly at (859) 369-5678, you can email us, or you can reach out on social media. But please do reach out, and we'll get back to you as fast as we can.

Dog Spaying and Neutering - FAQs 3

Dr. Sarah Crank
Advanced Animal Care - Waco

Will my veterinarian give me post-op instructions?

At Waco, we make sure that you go home with specific instructions on what to do for your dog regarding medications, resting, keeping them away from their incision and making sure you're comfortable with your dog's post-op care.

How long is the recovery after a dog is spayed or neutered?

It can vary, but generally you're looking at anywhere from around five to seven days of them having to be rested and calm.

Will my dog need pain meds at home after I spay or neuter?

We recommended it. As you can imagine, they have major abdominal surgery for those spays. A lot of things got moved around and a lot of tissues have been affected, so they can be really sore. Having that pain medication will help them heal and keep them comfortable during that process. The same thing goes for neutering. Even though it may not be as invasive as a spay, they can benefit from those pain medications not only for their level of comfort, but also to help decrease inflammation and post-op complications.

Will my dog gain weight after a spay or neuter?

It is a possibility. Their metabolism can be affected once we remove those hormones. You'd have to work with your vet and look at your animal to see if you need to adjust their diet or their exercise level if they do start to gain a little weight.

Will my dog's personality change after being spayed or neutered?

Not typically, unless it's for the better. These guys can have some behavioral changes when they have testosterone or estrogen running through them. In general, females are not as affected as males. Sometimes, by removing that testosterone, your male dog could become a little better and less territorial if he has been aggressive in the past. But unfortunately, a spay or neuter is never a guarantee to change a behavior, whether it is positive or negative.

Will my dog stop running away if I neuter him?

It is a good possibility. Many male dogs are out looking for a girlfriend. If they smell another dog in heat, and they can smell that from very long distances, they will go after that dog. That's one reason why it's a great idea to neuter if you're not planning on breeding your dog. It can help avoid any unnecessary accidents like being hit by a car or getting lost.

If you still have other questions and you'd like to reach out to us, you can call us directly at (859) 369-5678, you can email us, or you can reach out on social media. But please do reach out, and we'll get back to you as fast as we can.