For every person that is born, 15 dogs and 45 cats are born. In order to provide every one of these dogs and cats with a home, one person would have to own 2 dogs and 5 cats at all times. This equates to a household of four people owning 8 dogs and 20 cats to keep up with the overpopulation issue. (http://www.uq.edu.au/vetschool/desexing-your-pet)
Deciding to have a much loved pet desexed is sometimes a big decision. This operation will be the most significant surgical procedure most healthy pets will have in their lifetime. This article provides you with the information to make this decision clearer.
Why do we recommend desexing?
Prevents unwanted litters:
Veterinarians will recommend desexing in an effort to avoid unwanted pregnancies. Spaying a female will automatically stop her cycle and the associated bleeding and attention from males.
Each year, RSPCA shelters take in 160,000 nationally, many of which are the result of unplanned breeding. (http://www.rspca.org.au/campaigns/responsible-pet-ownership/desexing)
Castrating a male dog can help control the dominance aggression towards other people or dogs. Castration can also reduce a males wandering instincts if a female dog in the neighbourhood is on heat. Reducing the desire to roam could help prevent traumatic injuries, such as being hit by a car or involved in a dog fight.
Entire male cats have a tendency to roam and pick fights with other tomcats, which can result in medical implications, such as cat bite abscesses or the spread of FIV (Feline Immunodeficiency Virus). Cat castration can also help rid of the unpleasant behaviour that is spraying / territory marking.
Sterilised pets are much less likely to develop diseases or illnesses. Spaying female pets can reduce the risk of developing mammary tumours. Pyometra, a horrible infection of the uterus, can also be prevented with elective spaying.
Castration reduces prostate problems, and perianal tumours.
And lets not forget, the cheaper council registration fees.
Are there any cons?
It is estimated that between 3% - 5% of spayed females develop urinary incontinence. Muscle strength is needed in the urethral sphincter to prevent urine leakage. After a female dog is spayed, the strength in the urethral sphincter is decreased, and it can weaken with age.
Urethral sphincter strength can be improved with inexpensive medication. Most incontinent female dogs respond to drug intervention.
So, you’ve heard a few rumours?
“Female pets should have a litter before you desex them”
This will not benefit your pet at all. Spaying a dog before her first heat will reduce the risk of her developing mammary cancer to almost zero.
“Desexing my pet will make them fat”
A routine sterilisation procedure removes the organs that are responsible for hormone production, which can result in your pet's metabolism being slowed. Desexing does not make your pet fat, overfeeding your pet will make it fat.
“Animals become lazy after being desexed”
Generally, there is no change in the character of your dog. They will still be willing to chase their ball, or participate in their favourite activity.