We believe that in most instances, owners should consider having their male or female animal neutered (castrated/spayed), unless they are to be used specifically for breeding. Some people think that it benefits their pet to have a litter or that their character is changed by neutering, but there is no scientific support for this assertion.  Rescue centres are overflowing with unwanted and homeless pets from uncontrolled breeding. 

The many health benefits derived from neutering dogs, cats, rabbits and guinea pigs include preventing unwanted pregnancies, preventing cancer of the mammary glands, ovaries, testicles or womb, preventing pyometra which is a potentially fatal womb infection, reduced straying and fighting between males, reduced spread of fatal diseases such as FIV through fighting, and a reduction of undesirable male traits such as urine marking or aggressive or over-sexed behaviour.

There is no one right answer as to when neutering is best performed, but we generally advise between 8 and 12 months old for dogs and about 6 months old for cats.  This timing can be varied according to individual circumstances.  Neutering bitches before their second season reduces the risk of mammary gland tumours in later life.  Having a litter does not reduce the risk of mammary cancer. 

Please phone or come and have a chat with one of our vets or nurses if you are thinking about neutering your animal.  They can talk you through all aspects of neutering from whether and when to have your pet neutered, what to do before the operation, the operation itself and caring for them afterwards at home.  An ideal opportunity to chat things through is at the free juvenile health check when your pet reaches six months of age.

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