The Benefits of Spaying or Neutering Your Pet
- Spaying and neutering helps a pet live a longer, healthier life. Medical evidence shows that spayed or neutered pets are less likely to develop reproductive-related health problems.
- Spayed and neutered pets have fewer behavioral issues. Neutered cats are less likely to spray; neutered dogs are less likely to wander or escape the yard. Both are less prone to fighting.
- Your animal and its potential offspring won’t contribute to the population of unwanted pets. Many people are surprised to learn that annually 6-to-8 million animals enter shelters; 3-to-4 million are euthanized.
- Spaying or neutering your pet is affordable. Some veterinarians offer reduced fees, some animal shelters hold onsite spay/neuter clinics, and some organizations have low-cost mobile clinics that come to under-served areas.
- Many animal control agencies offer reduced licensing fees for sterilized pets.
Frequently asked questions:
Q: Isn’t it dangerous for my pet to undergo spay or neuter surgery?
A: No. Thousands of cats and dogs are routinely and safely spayed or neutered every day by veterinarians all across the country. Although there is an inherent risk with anesthesia, monitoring equipment and the highest standards of care ensure this risk is minimal.
Q: If I have my pet sterilized, won’t he or she become fat and lazy?
A: Pets that have been spayed or neutered can be just as active as unsterilized pets. Remember that any pet can gain weight if not provided with appropriate nutrition and adequate exercise.
Q: Isn’t it healthier for female cats and dogs to be bred once?
A: No. Female cats and dogs are less likely to develop medical complications in their senior years if they have never been bred or experienced any estrus cycles.
Q: Won’t my pet’s personality change if I have him neutered?
A: Male cats will be calmer and more affectionate; male dogs will exhibit fewer aggressive tendencies, but their basic personalities won’t change after sterilization.
Q: Wouldn’t it be great for my kids to witness the miracle of birth by letting our pet have a litter?
A: The birth of a litter of kittens, puppies or other small pets is truly miraculous. However, it is equally important to teach children about being responsible for these new lives. Since there is no guarantee that they or any of their future litters will have good, lifelong homes, what other lesson will your children be learning from this experience? Homeless pets that already exist need everyone’s help. We all need to teach children to have compassion, respect and responsibility for the animals that share our world.