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This conversation came up on another thread so I thought I'd start a proper thread for it here so everyone else can jump in too if they aren't keeping up on the other.

What are the pros and cons of spaying and neutering?

When should it be done?

I've heard large and giant breed dogs are supposed to wait longer to get neutered so they can grow properly (or something like that) yet I talked to a lady with a Great Pyrenees puppy the other day who said her vet wants the dog's spay done around 7 months of age. I tried to tell her to do a little more research before jumping ahead with that because I've heard giant breed dogs are supposed to wait longer to get fixed but she thought that 7 months was "waiting longer!"
 

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I still have my qualms with both. Neutering, I'm doing. Duckie will be neutered. I feel it's going to help with his male adolesence stage and his dominance over a larger dog. Also, it will help with potty training and he won't want to mark in my house. Spaying, well, I still am not sure on that either yet. I want to spay her, in hopes that it does help with her DA a little and her protection / territorial side. However, with all the issues, I'm not sure if it's the right thing to do with her.
 

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OMG! I went on the internet to see what "it" said about spaying and neutering and so far, check this out, is what is represented in what I've read so far...

"Today, veterinarians know that a spay or neuter surgery can be performed as early as 6 to 8 weeks of age with no harmful effects."

I thought 6 mos. was too early and now these sites say 6 - 8 wks. Boy, I have to do more checking on this one.
 

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I honestly wouldn't spay or neuter my pets that early. Duckie is going to wait til he's 6 months because that's what I've always heard and been comfortable with my other animals I've had. When we had Mako, they wanted to neuter him at 8 weeks. I told them to jump off a bridge. Exactly that. I would never have them cut into my 8 week old puppy after just having him home and not fully adjusted/growing.
 

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A lot of the Humane societies are neutering and spaying puppies now at 8 weeks so they can have it done before they adopt them out. That is why they are saying it is safe and has no effect on them but I don't believe it. We were always taught that 6 months was the earliest age for both surgeries at vet tech school. The thought was to spay a female puppy before her first heat to greatly reduce the chance of mammary tumors (all three of my mother-in -laws unspayed dogs had mammary tumors), and to neuter a male puppy before he started producing too much testosterone and developed dominance behaviors that would remain after neutering.
There is another theory that says neutered dogs may grow too much bigger and develop joint problems so wait to neuter them until a year of age but that is a minority theory. I was going to wait until Rocky was a year old to neuter him but he was starting to hump everything in site, including the poor 12 year old Lhasa so he was neutered at 5 months and he never does it anymore.
There you go.....more information then you probably wanted!
 

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That's what Duckie's already started doing! Humping China!! He's only 3 months old (possibly older but dang I don't remember lol)
 

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I was going to wait until Rocky was a year old to neuter him but he was starting to hump everything in site, including the poor 12 year old Lhasa so he was neutered at 5 months and he never does it anymore.
I don't think neutering has anything to do with humping. My Golden, Zack, used to hump his sister, Skylar, all their lives until he died at 12yo. He was neutered and she was spayed. There probably wasn't a day that went by that Zack didn't hump Skylar.

I know with male Great Danes, you don't want to netuer them until they are around 18 months old. They need the testosterone to grow the big heads and fill out masculine muscular bodies. If you neuter before then, they will likely grow up to look like girls. :smile:
 

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I know that with larger breeds they are recommending to wait longer to get them neutered now because of growth issues and I did have joint problems with my other Chow that we neutered early (he ended up being 80 pounds and much too large for his breed).
We got Rocky from a private rescue group and part of the requirements of adopting him was that he was neutered before he hit 6 months old. We had to supply them with proof of neutering by a certain date. I would have preferred waiting, but he is doing fine. I know the thoughts on humping vs neutering are varied. My other boy chow never humped a thing in his life either before or after he was neutered so I have no reference with him. Rocky went after everything that moved or even resembled an animal (ie...teddybears!). He hasn't done it since he was neutered. I was taught that once they are old enough for it to have become a habit, neutering won't change the behavior pattern so maybe he just hadn't learned to do it often enough or developed his little puppy brain enough.
 

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Here's something I found that I thought was interesting...

"Myths and facts
There are many myths about canine reproductive needs. Chiefly among these are the suspicion that neutering turns a male into a sissy and spaying causes a female to get fat and to lament her lost capacity.

The truth is that male dogs, especially those with a submissive personality, are usually better pets if they are neutered. They may have less desire to roam, to mark territory (including furniture), and, if neutered before sexual maturity, they may be less likely to exert dominance over family members. They may also be healthier pets: no testicles means no testicular cancer.

A word of caution, however. Neutering a dog reduces production of testosterone but does not eliminate this hormone. Thus a neutered dog, especially if he has a dominant character, may also retain his desire to roam and an assertive or even aggressive personality. Owners who depend on neutering to resolve behavior problems run a high risk of being disappointed unless they also train the pet to have good manners at home and in public.

Females also tend to be better pets if they do not experience oestrus every six-to-nine months. Heat cycles bring hormonal changes that can lead to personality changes, and oestrus females must be confined to prevent unwanted pregnancies. Repeated heat cycles may subject the reproductive system to uterine and mammary cancers as they age. Some bitches experience false pregnancies that can be a bother to deal with and uterine infections that can be fatal.

While the hormone changes caused by sterilization can contribute to overweight, dogs and bitches do not generally get fat simply as a result of spay or neuter surgery. Like other mammals, they gain weight if they eat too much and exercise too little or are genetically programmed to be hefty. Weight gain that follows sterilization surgery may be linked to those hormone changes but will be aggravated by continuing to feed a high energy diet to a dog that is reducing the need for energy as he reaches his adult size. Excess energy in the food becomes excess fat on the body.

As far as we know, dogs do not lament their lost capability to reproduce. This is a different species than ours; they reproduce to ensure survival of their kind, not to nurture a pup for 18 years, watch it go off to college, marry, establish a career, and produce grandchildren. Bitches nurse their pups for a few weeks, teach them to behave like dogs, and go on. Males know nothing of fatherhood; they do not recognize pups as their own."

Here's the website in case you're interested:
Dog Owner's Guide: Spay/Neuter Surgery
 

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Sorry guys this is my last post for a minute....

One last thing, most of the sites I read say 6-8 wks. is ok. And, only one so far said before the dog's first heat (in female) and that can come as early as 6 mos to as late as 12 - 14 months. Go figure.

The following website talks about neutering (in labs)and may answer some of your questions about neutering in general

Early Neutering
 

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Isn't there something out there about males possibly getting bone cancer or some kind of cancer if they are neutered too early?
 

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Isn't there something out there about males possibly getting bone cancer or some kind of cancer if they are neutered too early?
don't know about bone cancer but here's a quote from the website I added in my post above..

"The truth is that male dogs, especially those with a submissive personality, are usually better pets if they are neutered. They may have less desire to roam, to mark territory (including furniture), and, if neutered before sexual maturity, they may be less likely to exert dominance over family members. They may also be healthier pets: no testicles means no testicular cancer"
 

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Either way it is surprising as he is only just now turning 3 months old. He doesn't do it often and all China has to do is sit on his head to get him to stop, which means, I'm assuming, to exert her dominance.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
My roommate's puppy used to hump my Milo all the time when he was about 3 - 4 months old (Milo was neutered but Kody wasn't at the time). Now that Kody is neutered and nearly a year old, every chance Milo gets, he will hump Kody so they've switched rolls! This is mostly funny because Kody is not about 3 times taller than Milo. Last time i caught Milo doing it, it was when my roommate was scolding Kody for something so she had him in a sit and was holding his collar and talking right into his face. Milo snuck up on him and started humping him while he was subdued, it was hilarious!

On the other hand, neutering has helped at least two male dogs I know of to stop marking/peeing in the house, so I know that's an obvious benefit.
 

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My roommate's puppy used to hump my Milo all the time when he was about 3 - 4 months old (Milo was neutered but Kody wasn't at the time). Now that Kody is neutered and nearly a year old, every chance Milo gets, he will hump Kody so they've switched rolls! This is mostly funny because Kody is not about 3 times taller than Milo. Last time i caught Milo doing it, it was when my roommate was scolding Kody for something so she had him in a sit and was holding his collar and talking right into his face. Milo snuck up on him and started humping him while he was subdued, it was hilarious!
Very funny, ha, ha.... :biggrin:
 

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Well, I hope 9 months isn't too soon because Brian is going in for his operation Thursday of next week :redface:
 
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What are the pros and cons of spaying and neutering?
As someone who works with animal rescue, the obvious # 1 reason for spaying and neutering is to prevent pet overpopulation. There are just way too many homeless pets being euthanized every day because pet owners don't take responsibility to spay and / or neuter their pets. I would say, unless you plan to carefully breed your dog (and have homes lined up for the pups) then you should definitely consider spaying and / or neutering your dog rather than contribute to the pet overpopulation problem.
 
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