What is the difference between dog spaying and neutering?

Dog spay is the surgical procedure of removing the reproductive organs of a female. Neutering is removing the reproductive organs of the male.

 

Dr. Adam Stout
Cloverleaf Animal Hospital

 

How does a dog spay or neuter impact the health and wellbeing of my pet?

It could prevent a lot of problems down the road. One of the things is unwanted pregnancies. A lot of people say, well, maybe I worry about the female, but it takes two to tango. So we always recommend spaying the female and getting your male neutered. There may be some behavioral issues that arise. It's not guaranteed that these procedures will fix that, but we see some behavioral issues that a spay or neuter may address.

How soon should I bring my pet in to see a veterinarian to get my dog spayed or neutered?

We will talk to you about their health plan or program with puppies right off the bat. We recommend first seeing them at six to eight weeks to get those puppies started on their health plan. We'll then talk about spaying and neutering. With an older dog, we're going to talk to you as soon as you get them. If that dog is not spayed or neutered, as soon as you obtain that dog, contact us here at Cloverleaf Animal Hospital, and set up that first physical exam, and we can get a plan started on getting them spayed or neutered.

What are some possible conditions that can be helped by spaying or neutering my dog?

Once again, the first one is pregnancy. There are so many pets that end up in shelters. It's a huge thing, like I said to do both. It's responsible to do both the spay and the neuter to cut down on overpopulation. Females can run into a situation called pyometra, an infected uterus. That usually happens when they're older, but it can happen at any time and be an emergency. The uterus reproductive tract gets infected and really makes them sick, so it needs to come out. On the male side, a lot of what we see is prostate problems. Dogs have a prostate, and a lot of times, intact males can have issues related to that prostate. So it's key to get them neutered.

How will spaying or neutering affect my dog in the future?

It really shouldn't harm them as far as their lifestyle or their long-term happiness or health goes. Like I said, maybe some unwanted behavioral issues can be fixed. That's not always a guarantee, but if we see that they're having behavioral issues during their physical exam, we might say, hey, we need to get this animal spayed or neutered. You're preventing a lot of lifelong problems by getting them fixed. There are really no consequences if it's done at the right time as far as general health goes.

What will my veterinarian need to know about my dog before spaying or neutering it?

What we need to do is we need to see them. We need to get them into the hospital, get a good physical exam, and get them started on the plan of when this will happen and how this will happen. A lot of the costs and medications are based on weight, so we need to get their weight and make sure we have to have a good, healthy pet that we'll put on the table for surgery. So we need to make sure that they're healthy in the first place.

How long will it take for my dog to recover from being spayed or neutered?

We tell people here at Cloverleaf Animal Hospital that it's a 14-day recovery. The skin incision and all that takes about 14 days to heal.

What care should I be prepared to provide at home while my dog is recovering from their spay or neuter surgery?

The nice thing here at Cloverleaf Animal Hospital is that one of the technicians, once the surgery is done, gives you a go-home. We have printed and filled out go-home instructions for owners to have as a guideline at home on what to do and what to watch for after these surgeries. So they're going to have to be somewhat calmed, no running, and no jumping. It takes 14 days to make sure everything heals. So there is a nice go-home instruction sheet that we have here at Cloverleaf Animal Hospital.

If you still have other questions and you'd like to reach out to us, you can call us directly at (330) 948-2002, you can email us, or you can reach out on social media. But please do reach out, and we'll get back to you as fast as we can.