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Get Your Puppy Spayed or Neutered

If you’re not planning to breed your puppy, have your puppy spayed or neutered. Hormonal drives can override all else, and a puppy will try to escape the safe perimeters of home to go out and look for a mate. Doing so can lead to catastrophe, but placing your dog under lock and key in the home can lead to great frustration. Spaying or neutering generally leads to a happier life for all involved.

A female dog is prevented from reproducing by spaying. Her ovaries (the egg-producing sacs) are removed. This operation requires that your gal be anesthetized, and recovery takes 5 to 14 days.

A male dog is prevented from fathering puppies through castration, or neutering. Basically, his testicles are removed from a small incision, and his sac’s sewn up before you can say “Boo.” Your dog is anesthetized for the procedure and is back on his feet in 5 to 10 days.

Getting your puppy spayed or neutered doesn't change their personality. This alteration isn’t like a lobotomy — it simply removes the need to scope out and fight for mates.

Here’s a list of some other arguments for alteration:

  • Spaying prevents female dogs from going into heat and bleeding (twice a year for three weeks at a clip), which can be a mess for owners.

  • An estimated 4 to 6 million dogs are euthanized in animal shelters each year. Don’t add to the problem.

  • Having your dog fixed reduces the chance of breast, ovarian, uterine, and cervical cancer in females and testicular cancer and prostate infection in males.

  • Male dogs are less likely to mark your home or fight with other male dogs and are more likely to stay close to home when they’re neutered.

If you adopt your puppy from a shelter, you may be required to neuter him. Some shelters offer to do the procedure for you, and others direct you to a low-cost facility. Altering can cost anywhere from $50 to $250, depending on the individual dog’s sex and health.

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