Should I desex my pet?

The question of whether or not to desex your pet is becoming a popular point of discussion in recent years. Veterinary Clinics will generally advise you that it is the best option for your pet, however some breeders, and a lot of people on the internet are starting to voice different opinions. It is important before making the decision that you are educated and understand the arguments both for and against.

There are differing reasons between species and the sex as to why we spey and neuter your pets. But generally speaking the pro’s by far out way the con’s of desexing. For example, we desex male dogs because it greatly reduces the risk of prostate cancer, and behaviours such as urine marking, roaming and humping. For female dogs the big ones are reducing the risk of mammary tumours and preventing a Pyometra. A Pyometra is when the uterus fills with infection and is caused by hormonal changes, it is commonly seen in older entire female dogs. It is an emergency surgery, as without treatment it is fatal. Female Ferrets will also get a pyometra if not desexed or used for breeding. They stay in heat until mated, so if being kept as pets they need to be desexed. For cats a big one is to stop unwanted litters, as they are able to roam and breed from a very young age, and there are so many kittens and cats in shelters needing homes already. Rabbits also live longer healthier lives if desexed, it reduces the risk of cancers, urinary tract infections and often means a more friendly bunny.

A lot of clients question how often these conditions occur, and if their pets are actually at risk. Truthfully we do not see them to the extent of every week or every day at Manningham. But this is because the majority of pets we see, are desexed at around 6 – 12 months of age. However, in the last couple of months at Manningham we have seen three pyometra’s, a severe case of mammary tumors, and an older male dog we castrated in the hope to reduce his enlarged prostate. For a small clinic it is fair to say these numbers are high, especially if they could have been prevented

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