When you get a new pet, one of the most important things to consider is their health. How will you keep your dog healthy and happy? While food and exercise are at the top of most people’s list, one thing that some people forget to consider is spaying and neutering.

While most adoption centers require you to sign a contract stating that this will be done, or won’t adopt out the animal without having it done, if you buy from a breeder, or through a private adoption agency, this may be something you have to handle on your own. 

Spaying and neutering are veterinary procedure that require minimal hospitalization and offer lifelong health benefits to your pet. 

Many states and counties have established low-cost spay/neuter programs that make surgery easily affordable and accessible, and local rescue shelters can help you find out where to go!

So what are the top 10 benefits of the procedure? Read on!

 

Your female pet will live a longer, healthier life. 

Spaying helps prevent uterine infections and breast cancer, which is fatal in about 50 percent of dogs. Medical evidence indicates that females spayed before their first heat are typically healthier. (Many veterinarians now sterilize dogs and cats as young as eight weeks of age.)

 

Neutering provides major health benefits for your male.  

Besides preventing unwanted litters, neutering your male companion prevents testicular cancer. Additionally, will often decrease or eliminate other objectionable male dog behaviors, such as mounting furniture and family members. Larger breed dogs may benefit from “delayed neutering.” This means waiting until the animal is approximately 1 year old, to ensure proper bone formation. 

 

Your spayed female won't go into heat. 

The heat cycle for a female dog lasts about 3 weeks, every 6 months. During that time her vulva will swell and she will have a bloody discharge that can be not only messy but also quite smelly. While she is in heat your dog will be constantly releasing pheromones which will attract all the male dogs in your neighborhood and she should not be left alone in the yard due to the danger of attacks from males (or unintended pregnancies.)

 

Your male dog won't want to roam away from home. 

An intact male will do just about anything to find a mate! That includes digging his way under the fence and making like Houdini to escape from the house. And once he's free to roam, he risks injury in traffic and fights with other males.

             

Your neutered male will be much better behaved. 

Neutered cats and dogs focus their attention on their human families. On the other hand, un-neutered dogs and cats may mark their territory by spraying strong-smelling urine all over the house. Many aggression problems can be avoided by early neutering.

 

Spaying or neutering will NOT make your pet fat. 

Don’t use that old excuse! Lack of exercise and overfeeding will cause your pet to pack on the extra pounds-not neutering. Your pet will remain fit and trim as long as you continue to provide exercise and monitor food intake.

                            

Your dog may live longer! 

Altering your canine friend will increase his or her life by an average of 1 to 3 years!

                            

Spaying and neutering your pet is good for the community. 

Stray animals pose a real problem in many parts of the country. They can prey on wildlife, cause car accidents, damage the local fauna and frighten children. Spaying and neutering packs a powerful punch in reducing the number of animals on the streets.

             

Getting your license can be much cheaper. 

Renewing your pet's license can be more expensive if your pet is intact. Many counties have spay/neuter laws that require pets to be sterilized, or require people with unaltered pets to pay higher license renewal fees.

 

Spaying and neutering helps fight pet overpopulation. 

Every year, millions of cats and dogs of all ages and breeds are euthanized or suffer as strays. These high numbers are the result of unplanned litters that could have been prevented by spaying or neutering.