When thinking about reasons to spay or neuter our pets, most people feel that controlling the pet population is our one and only concern. While preventing the thousands of homeless puppies and kittens is of extreme importance, there are many medical and behavioral benefits as well.

Ovariohysterectomy, or spay, is a procedure in which both the ovaries and uterus are removed from a dog or cat. The surgery has numerous medical benefits. Spaying an animal prior to their first estrus, or heat cycle, can prevent mammary cancer in both dogs and cats. This cancer can be extremely aggressive, especially in cats. A life-threatening infection of the uterus, or pyometra, can also be prevented if the animal is spayed. This illness can occur at any age and clinical signs may be nonspecific (fever, vomiting, abdominal pain), and progress quickly.

Castration, or neutering, involves the surgical removal of the testicles in a dog or cat. From a behavior standpoint, neutering an animal can decrease aggression between dogs and between cats. The likelihood to roam off property will also be reduced after your pet is neutered. Medically, castration will not only prevent diseases of the prostate but also testicular and other types of cancer.

We recommend spaying and neutering puppies and kittens as early as 4 months of age. Your pet will stay the night in our hospital after the procedure and go home the following day. Both young and old pets recover from the surgery quickly. Your pet will be able to exercise as usual just 2 weeks after the procedure.