Are you a new dog owner, or an experienced one, trying to find out when is it too late to spay a dog? If so, you are not alone, and the answer can be a bit tricky. Spaying a dog means specific organs such as the ovaries, uterus, and fallopian tubes are removed from your dog. This procedure prevents them from getting pregnant.
Spaying is also referred to as ovariohysterectomy and is a standard surgical procedure conducted in a veterinarian office or animal hospital. Some veterinarians choose only to remove the ovaries in some cases, and the specific reason is explained to the pet parents.
Did you just adopt an older dog? Or, did you just welcome home an adorable little puppy? Chances are spaying your little girl is on your mind, and you are concerned about the right time to schedule the procedure.
First, you need to be confident about spaying your dog because once the procedure is done, you can’t change it. This decision takes a lot of careful consideration. Make sure you answer the important question, “Do I want to breed my dog?”
If the answer to that question is yes, don’t spay your dog. However, if the answer is no, you need to continue reading to learn more about spaying your dog.
When Is It Too Late to Spay A Dog
Reasons to Spay Your Dog
While preventing pregnancy is the top reason most pet parents spayed their dog, the following are other important reasons.
- Part of treatment for diabetes.
- Part of treatment for uterine cancer or infection.
- Treatment of phantom or false pregnancy.
- Difficulty birthing
Advantages of Spaying a Dog
- Elimination of hormone fluctuations.
- Your dog never gets pregnant.
- Prevents estrus or heat.
- Stops the urge of your dog going out to find a mate while in heat.
- Prevents pyometra also known as a uterine infection.
- Dogs have less than 0.5% of getting breast cancer when spayed before their first heat.
- Lower risk of developing ovarian and uterine cancer.
- Increases the lifespan of a dog.
Disadvantages of Spaying a Dog
- Reduces metabolism
- Prone to gaining weight
- High risk of knee injury in large dogs that are spayed before bone growth is complete.
- Spaying too early increases the risk of phobias and sensitivities to noise.
- Urinary incontinence in older dogs.
When should a female dog get spayed
Choosing the best age to spay your dog can feel like an overwhelming task, but it doesn’t need to be. Typically, female dogs should not be spayed until they are 6 months or older.
The reason you don’t want to spay your dog before they are six months old is that research has shown it increases the risk of cancer and orthopedic problems.
Females show signs of sexual maturity when they experience their first heat or estrous. This process involves two weeks of eliminating blood, moody behavior, and male dogs breaking down the door to get to her.
Typically, females experience their first heat around 9 to 10 months, but breeds vary. Once she experiences her first heat, it irreversibly changes to a mature state which makes spay surgery challenging.
As a responsible pet parent, you need to aim for the time frame between six months and nine months to spay your dog in hopes she won’t experience her first heat. Smaller and larger dog breeds tend to vary, so discussing this matter with a veterinarian is recommended.
When is it too late to spay a dog
The good news is it’s never too late to spay a dog. However, if your dog has underlying health conditions consulting with a veterinarian is recommended for further confirmation.
What are the dangers of the surgery
Since spaying is an operation, your dog will be put under general anesthesia. This increases the risk of complications and can lead to death. Most veterinarian offices have modern equipment that monitors the situation and lowers the possibility of complications occurring.
How to Take Care of Your Dog after Being Spayed
- The veterinarian will issue a cone collar to go around your dog’s neck. Make sure you put it on your dog to prevent them from damaging the area that had surgery.
- Don’t let the incision get wet which means avoid giving your dog a bath until after they are completely healed.
- Avoid long walks, jumping, swimming, and hiking with your dog. Keep daily walks short and use a short leash so your dog can’t wander off too far.
Should I have my dog spayed or not
Veterinarians and animal activists often recommended getting dogs spayed to help control the canine population. It provides health benefits for your dog and prevents the discomfort they would experience when they go into heat.
Spaying your dog is a major decision that needs to be taken seriously. Having a deep discussion with a veterinarian about your specific dog’s breed, size, age, and overall health are necessary to help you make the right decision.
If you can’t make up your mind, you need to consult with a professional. You can also conduct your own online research to learn more about the procedure and other important details as mentioned above.
Learning about the surgery is important because it will help you have a better understanding of your dog’s needs after the procedure. You also need to consider the possible dangers, although rare, can lead to death while under general anesthesia.
How to Prepare Your Dog for Surgery
Feeding your dog a healthy diet and providing regular exercise helps keep your dog in good shape. If your dog is overweight, you need to help them lose weight to help lower the risk of complications during surgery.
Your goal is to make sure your dog is in good health before the surgery is conducted. The veterinarian will advise you about making lifestyle adjustments to ensure your dog is in good health.
If you are a pet parent that would like to allow their female dog to experience having one litter of puppies, but still want to consider spaying in the future, you need to involve the veterinarian.
Many pet parents take pride in adopting their dogs from a shelter. Rescuing a dog is an incredibly rewarding experience. However, it also comes with a few issues, such as not knowing your dog’s medical history and things they have experienced throughout their life prior to meeting you.
Veterinarians conduct thorough exams to determine a dog’s overall health and pinpoint any issues or possible future ailments that can occur. The good news is the veterinarian can tell if a female dog had a litter of puppies or not. This information will give you a good view of whether spaying your dog is right for your rescue dog.
Spaying your dog provides health benefits and eliminates the risk of serious health issues. Always get a professional opinion whether spaying your dog is in their best interest. When in doubt get a second professional opinion.