Have you noticed that your pet seems to develop jaws of steel when it's time for a dose of medicine? As you struggle to pry apart your furry friend's teeth, you know you only have one chance to dr ...View Article
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Spaying and neutering are the most common pet operations, but many people know little about them aside from unwanted pregnancy. We at Hickory Grove Animal Hospital in Charlotte, NC believe that more information should be available for those considering getting one of these operations for their pets. This will help to explain why veterinarians are so positive on the procedures.
These are terms for the sterilization or "fixing" of pets. Spaying is the procedure for females, and it involves removing the ovaries, fallopian tubes, and uterus. Neutering is for males, and it is the removal of the testicles.
Many people don't realize that there are plenty of benefits to spaying and neutering besides stopping the production of unwanted litters. For male animals, neutering helps to reduce aggression, roaming, territorial marking, and general hard-headedness. It also reduces or eliminates problems related to the reproductive system, such as prostate and other cancers.
For females, spaying eliminates the risk of many diseases of the reproductive system and reduces the chance of getting cancer in the remaining related parts (such as the breasts). It also can improve behavior, reducing the drive to roam, howl or caterwaul to attract mates, mark territory, and be obstinate. It eliminates heats, so the animals stay cleaner all year round.
It can reduce or eliminate some behaviors if done early enough in your pet's life. However, if the pet has already learned a bad behavior, such as marking, it will have to be trained away. What it will do is eliminate the instinctual drive toward certain behaviors, so in young animals, this training will be easier to accomplish. However, traits that are generally hormone-driven, such as the aggression that accompanies mate-seeking, should show marked reductions.
Puppies and kittens can be spayed or neutered at as young as eight weeks.
No, but adult animals sometimes suffer more complications. They also won't gain as many health-protective benefits. That said, it is never too late to prevent unwanted puppies and kittens.
To make an appointment at our Spay & Neuter clinic, just call us at Hickory Grove Animal Hospital in Charlotte, NC. Our veterinarian will evaluate your pet to ensure that the procedure will be safe for him or her. Then, the appropriate operation will be done to prevent surprise puppies or kittens, prevent reproductive cancers and other illnesses, and reduce the prevalence of unwanted behaviors. We can be reached at 704-563-5858 and hope to hear from you soon!