6 Reasons for Spaying a Dog

Spaying is the sterilization procedure for female dogs involving the removal of the ovaries and the uterus. The reasons for spaying a dog are multiple, starting from prevention of pregnancies to changing destructive behavior.

The term spaying, refers exclusively to the sterilization of females, while neutering can refer both to male and female dogs.

1. No More Unwanted Puppies

The ovariohysterectomy, or removal of ovaries and uterus will disable the female to get pregnant and have more puppies. Dogs are in heat 2 times per year and if a dog gets pregnant twice per year, the number of dogs will be alarmingly high. A lot of puppies end up in shelters or even worse.

Male dogs may also be neutered, so as to prevent the fertilization of females.

2. Stop Spraying

Dogs often spray to mark their territory. Over 90% of spayed dogs stop spraying within 6 months after the procedure. Please note that if the spraying is caused by stress or a urinary infection, neutering will not stop the behavior. 

3. Prevent Aggressive Behavior

Spayed dogs are calmer and friendlier. A spayed dog will not have heat cycles, which are associated with a lot of sudden behavioral changes.

The dog will be more affectionate and have a stable behavior. A neutered dog will be less active and may become obese, so you need to make sure she gets some daily exercise.

Some dogs that are not neutered tend to be aggressive towards other dogs, especially during the mating period. Dog fights may result in injuries and transmission of different viruses. A neutered dog will be less likely to engage in fights.

4. Prevent Dominant Behavior

Some dogs tend to dominate their owners. Spaying a dominant dog will make her more obedient. However, spaying alone might not solve the problem entirely, so obedience training is also recommended.

5. No Pregnancy Related Health Risks

Dog pregnancy may have some health risks such as reabsorption or eclampsia. Giving birth may also endanger your dog’s life.

A spayed dog cannot get pregnant, so is not exposed to these health risks.

6. No Reproductive System Diseases

If a dog is spayed, she has no ovaries or uterus, so she is not exposed to ovarian cysts, uterine infections or reproductive system cancer.

Also, spayed dogs will be less prone to mammary gland cancer.

The most recommended time for spaying is before the dog has her first heat cycle. If the procedure is performed when the dog is young, it will be less complicated and present less risks or complications. However, the procedure may be performed at any time, even after your dog had a few puppies. The spaying is a small incision that will heal in less than 2 weeks. The procedure lasts for maximum 1 hour.

The disadvantages of spaying include obesity due to a more sedentary lifestyle and the dog will be more exposed to thyroid problems, bladder incontinence or joint problems.