Spay and Neuter

What happens during a spay and neuter and why does my pet require this?
A spay involves removal of the ovaries and the uterus. A neuter involves removal of the testicles. Both spay and neuter will render the patient incapable of having babies.

The benefit of spay and neuter include:

  • Inability to produce offspring which helps to control our pet overpopulation problem
  • Reduces or eliminates the risk of certain types of cancer
  • Generally results in a longer life span
  • Prevention of urine spraying in the male cat

Will my dog/cat get fat?
Studies seem to suggest a possible reduction in rate of metabolism. However, they also indicate that this can be easily controlled through diet and exercise. If you are concerned about this or any other issues surrounding spay and neuter please call the clinic. We would be happy to answer any questions or concerns.

What is the best age to spay or neuter my cat/dog?
With our current knowledge, there is no one best answer regarding the optimal age for ovariohysterectomy (spay) or castration (neuter) of dogs and cats. Perhaps the controversy is best addressed by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) in its position statement, which was approved by the AVMA House of Delegates in 1994 and most recently revised in 2004. It states, “The AVMA supports the concept of early (before puberty at 8 to 16 weeks of age) spay/neuter in dogs and cats in an effort to reduce the number of unwanted animals of these species. Just as for other veterinary medical and surgical procedures, veterinarians should use their best medical judgment in deciding at what age spay/neuter should be performed on individual animals.” For the average sized patient we generally will recommend spay and neuter between 6-8 months of age.

What about Large or Giant breed dogs (greater than 15 kg)?
Existing studies on the benefits and detriments of performing spay/neuter in large- and giant-breed dogs For large- and giant-breed dogs, the Tamarack Veterinary clinic generally recommends spay between the first and second heat cycles in female dogs and neuter after 12 months in male dogs. Although we suspect that early spay and neuter in large breed dogs, patient genetics and environmental factors are likely to be equally, if not more, important.

At Tamarack Veterinary Clinic, we will counsel you on an appropriate time to spay or neuter your pet. Rest assured we have state of the art monitoring and patient warming systems. All patients undergoing surgery are placed on intravenous fluids and will be given pain control in form of local block anesthesia (freezing), injectable pain control at time of the surgery and medication to go home. If you have any questions at any time please ask one of our staff members who will be happy to help you. We would also be happy to show you our surgical suite and take you on a behind the scenes tour.

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