Good for You
Spaying and neutering makes pets better, more affectionate companions.
Neutering cats makes them less likely to spray and mark territory.
Spaying a dog or cat eliminates her heat cycle Estrus lasts an average of six to 12 days, often twice a year, in dogs and an average of six to seven days, three or more times a year, in cats. Females in heat can cry incessantly, show nervous behavior, and attract unwanted male animals.
Unsterilized animals often exhibit more behavior and temperament problems than do those who have been altered.
Spaying and neutering can make pets less likely to bite.
Neutering makes pets less likely to roam the neighborhood, run away, or get into fights.
Working dogs are more likely to concentrate on the task at hand rather than seeking out an available mate or fighting with a rival.
Good for Your Pet
Spaying and neutering helps dogs and cats live longer, healthier lives.
Spaying and neutering can eliminate or reduce the incidence of a number of health problems that can be very difficult or expensive to treat.
Spaying eliminates the possibility of uterine or ovarian cancer and greatly reduces the incidence of breast cancer, particularly when your pet is spayed before her first estrus cycle.
Neutering eliminates testicular cancer and decreases the incidence of prostate disease.
Good for the Community
Communities spend millions of dollars to control unwanted animals.
Irresponsible breeding contributes to the problem of dog bites and attacks.
Animal shelters are overburdened with surplus animals.
Stray pets and homeless animals get into trash containers, defecate in public areas or on private lawns, and frighten or anger people who have no understanding of the misery or needs.
Some stray animals also scare away or kill birds and wildlife.
What do "spay" and "neuter" mean?
Female dogs and cats are spayed by removing their reproductive organs, and male dogs and cats are neutered by removing their testicles. In both cases the operation is performed while the pet is under anesthesia. Depending on your pet's age, size, and health, he or she will stay at your veterinarian's office for a few hours a a few days. Depending upon the procedure, your pet may need stitches removed after a few days. Your veterinarian can fully explain spay and neuter procedures to you and discuss with you the best age at which to sterilize your pet.
Spay or neuter surgery carries a one-time cost that is relatively small when one considers its benefits. It's a small price to pay for the health of your pet and the prevention of more unwanted animals.
Myths & Facts About Spaying and Neutering
Myth: My pet will get fat and lazy.
Fact: The truth is that most pets get fat and lazy because their owners feed them too much and don't give them enough exercise.
Myth: It's better to have one litter first.
Fact: Medical evidence indicates just the opposite. In fact, the evidence shows that females spayed before their first heat are typically healthier. Many veterinarians now sterilize dogs and cats as young as eight weeks of age.
Myth: I want my dog to be protective.
Fact: Spaying or neutering does not affect a dog's natural instinct to protect home and family. A dog's personality is formed more by genetics and environment than by sex hormones.
Myth: I don't want my male dog or cat to feel like less of a male.
Fact: Pets don't have any concept of sexual identity or ego. Neutering will not change a pet's basic personality. He doesn't suffer any kind of emotional reaction or identity crisis when neutered.
Myth: I'll find good homes for all the puppies and kittens.
Fact: You may find homes for all of your pet's litter. But each home you find means one less home for the dogs and cats in shelters who need good homes. Also, in less than one year's time, each of your pet's offspring may have his or her own litter, adding even more animals to the population. The problem of pet overpopulation is created and perpetuated one litter at a time.
Information adapted from the Humane Society of the Unites States 2004
Feel free to pass along this information to those wanting the facts about spaying and neutering.