The Importance of Spaying and Neutering
Whether you have a kitten, puppy, or a recently adopted pet, it is essential to make sure he or she is spayed or neutered. Veterinarians recommend having your pet spayed or neutered as a safe and effective way of eliminating negative habits and promoting a long and healthy life for your pet. Our team at Mission Veterinary Clinic and Animal Emergency Hospital in Granada Hills is here to help your pet throughout the process.
What Is Spaying or Neutering?
Spaying (for females) or neutering (for males) means removing all or part of an animal’s reproductive organs. This can be performed as a routine surgery or laparoscopically at our clinic. In females, this means removing the ovaries as well. Spayed females will also not go into heat and attract unwanted males.
When to Neuter or Spay
Neutering or spaying your pet early on is the best way to get the maximum benefit. That means before the pet has gone through her first heat cycle. Pets can be neutered or spayed as young as 8 weeks old, but before 5 months of age is recommended. However, larger breeds may need to wait longer to develop before properly being spayed or neutered. It is important to consult our staff to find the best time for your pet to have the surgery.
How Long After Giving Birth Can My Pet Be Spayed?
While it is tempting to get your female pet spayed as soon as possible after pregnancy, it is best to wait until at least two weeks after her milk has dried up and the litter has fully weaned off. This is often at four to five weeks old for puppies and five to six weeks for kittens. It is essential to know that mothers can get pregnant again while nursing their kittens. The best way to prevent another pregnancy until you can get her spayed is to keep her away from male pets.
Benefits of Spay and Neuter Surgery
- Reduced risk of cancer – Spaying can reduce the risk of breast tumors, uterus infections, prostate cancer, and ovarian cancer.
- Prevent the pet from going into heat – when a female goes into heat; they often urinate frequently and indiscriminately on floors and furniture. A heat cycle is 4-5 days every three weeks.
- Marking territory – Pets often mark their territory by urinating. This can be very smelly, particularly when it is inside the home. Neutering can help eliminate the problem.
- Eliminate wandering behavior – As pets develop, they can wander around the neighborhood looking for someone to mate with. When they roam, pets can get lost, hurt, or bother others.
- Controlling the pet population – Pets are abandoned at shelters every day. There are not enough homes for the 6.5 million animals found every year. Spaying or neutering can help diminish that number.