Spays and neuters are some of the most common surgeries performed in veterinary medicine. They not only help prevent unwanted pregnancies, but they also boast several health benefits for your pet, too! The surgeries help prevent serious diseases later in life and even curb undesirable behaviors that can take a toll on your bond with your pet. At Pennsylvania Veterinary Care, our ultimate goal is to give you as many happy and healthy years with your pet as possible. Spay and neuter surgery plays an important part in reaching that goal.
Why Should I Spay/Neuter My Pet?
There are loads of reasons why you should spay or neuter your new pet. The benefits of surgery are both medical and behavioral, and include the following:
- Females no longer experience heat cycles, a messy, frustrating experience for her.
- Males have decreased aggression toward other males, and are also less likely to practice behaviors like mounting and urine-spraying.
- Both males and females are less likely to try to escape to find a mate.
- Males have a decreased risk of prostate problems later in life and an eliminated risk of developing testicular cancer.
- Females have a decreased risk of mammary gland tumors and an eliminated risk of developing uterine or ovarian cancers.
For the greatest number of benefits, your veterinarian will discuss the best timing for your pet’s surgery. While 6 months is the most common timeframe for surgery, some pets may benefit from an earlier or later surgery depending on their breed, gender, and current health condition.
Busting Spay and Neuter Myths
Despite the clear benefits of surgery, some myths still persist about spays and neuters, which sometimes cloud the judgment of well-meaning pet parents! To help you make the best decision for your pets, we’ve debunked some of the more common myths:
Myth 1: My pet’s personality will change with surgery.
Surgery does help curb behaviors, but it will not affect your pet’s personality! Your pet will retain their unique personality after surgery.
Myth 2: My pet will gain weight after surgery.
Weight gain is not caused by spay and neuter surgery—too much food and too little exercise are what contribute to it! Your pet’s metabolism will change as they age, so the food they enjoy as a puppy or kitten is not suitable for them as they get older. With the right nutrition and a steady exercise plan, your pet will remain fit and trim! Please talk to us about your pet’s nutrition if you have any questions!
Myth 3: My female pet will be missing out if she doesn’t have at least one litter.
It’s true that new puppies and kittens are the sweetest things in the world, but if your female pet doesn’t experience giving birth, she’s not missing anything. In fact, your female will be healthier if she’s spayed before her first heat cycle. This timing further reduces her chances of developing mammary gland tumors later in life, which can often be malignant.
Myth 4: Spay/neuter surgery is too expensive.
The costs of surgery are a one-time payment that covers the procedure and all the safety protocols we employ to ensure your pet’s safety from start to finish. Compare that with the costs of caring for an entire litter, including the mother’s care. You’ll need to cover their food, vet visits, vaccines, deworming, and more. The one-time cost of surgery is far less expensive.