Inspired by a recent facebook conversation I had earlier today, I noticed many people think early spay and neuter is perfectly acceptable, despite scientific studies proving it isn’t. By early spay and neuter, I mean, some people were telling a girl to spay her dog before the dog’s first heat. Luckily, very-very few vets will do that. A lot of vets wait until they have finished their first heat, which is a lot better than, for example, 10 weeks.
A comment that struck me the most was from a women and it said “I’m not sure where they got their info because it’s wrong. There’s not one vet I know of that would agree with that info.”
Now, you would expect a vet to be up to date on the best methods of Animal Health Care, similar to how you would expect a Human Doctor to know the health risks of, say, an operation on an 80 year old person. Sadly that isn’t the case, many vets push people to spay or/and neuter early and often scaremonger them with stories of Pyometra, Testicular Cancer, Aggression Issues.
Of course, if there wasn’t any research done on it I would understand why people wouldn’t think twice, but there is research done on it, there is anecdotal facts that back up said scientific research too, that was produced by vets and scientists.
The Scientific Study: Veterinary hospital records of 759 Golden Retrievers, both intact and neutered, male and female, 1-8 years old were examined for diagnoses of hip dysplasia (HD), cranial cruciate ligament tear (CCL), lymphosarcoma (LSA), hemangiosarcoma (HSA), and mast cell tumor (MCT).
Of early-neutered males, 10 percent were diagnosed with HD, double the occurrence in intact males. There were no cases of CCL diagnosed in intact males or females, but in early-neutered males and females the occurrences were 5 percent and 8 percent, respectively. Almost 10 percent of early-neutered males were diagnosed with LSA, 3 times more than intact males. The percentage of HSA cases in late-neutered females (about 8 percent) was 4 times more than intact and early-neutered females. There were no cases of MCT in intact females, but the occurrence was nearly 6 percent in late-neutered females. – http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0055937
So, as you can see, there are issues with Early Spay and Neuter and it is time people realised this. You cannot take a dogs hormones away and expect everything to be hunky dory. If the dog medically needs a Spay or Neuter, then of course, that is acceptable. Taking a dogs hormones away too early just because of Scaremongering, irresponsible ownership, and the owners lack of research? That isn’t right.
Shelter overpopulation is, sort of an issue (i’ll get to that in another post), backyard breeders are 110% a major issue.
Well, please welcome an Alternative to Spay and Neutering that prevents babies but keeps much needed hormones: Ovary Sparing Spay and Vasectomy!
OSS and Vasectomy is brilliant. It can be done after first heat, dog keeps it’s hormones so will grow properly, etc. Yet will not make Puppies. A Vasectomised dog can mount and tie with a bitch in heat, and no puppies will happen, vice versa too, an intact male can cover an OSS bitch and nothing would happen.
Here is a list of vets around the world that do OSS and Vasectomy:
This one is just for America:
If you still want to neuter/spay your dog a good guide to follow is:
Small Breed – 1 year.
Medium Breed – 2 years.
Large breed – 3 years.
Giant breed – 4+ years.