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The Importance of Pet Spaying and Neutering

The Importance of Spaying and Neutering: Promoting Responsible Pet Ownership

It’s no secret that shelters and rescues are overloaded with animals. You’ve probably heard lots of talk about how you should have your pet spayed or neutered to reduce overcrowding issues, but there are also reasons directly related to the health of your pet. Overpopulation is a huge concern, but there’s more to it than that. Let’s explore some of the benefits and how spaying and neutering can help you as a responsible pet owner.

The Importance of Spaying and Neutering: Promoting Responsible Pet Ownership

 

1.   Prevention of Cancer

Certain cancers are more prevalent in animals that have not been spayed or neutered. For instance, in female cats and dogs, spaying can prevent mammary cancer. If a dog is spayed before she has her first heat, she will have no chance of developing mammary cancer later in life. The results are similar for female cats. Other types of cancer are also less prevalent in dogs and cats that have been spayed or neutered.

2.   Decreases Behavioral Problems

Males and females that are intact may exhibit behaviors associated with mating, like the desire to roam. In more severe cases, it can cause frantic actions like barking, aggression, and urine marking. Many pet owners have seen a dramatic difference after spay or neuter surgery. Most people report their animals become much calmer.

3.   May Increase the Life of a Pet

Studies have shown that neutered dogs lived 18% longer, and spayed female dogs lived 23% longer than intact dogs. The results for cats were even stronger. The tests showed female cats lived 39% longer, and neutered male cats lived a whopping 62% longer.

4.   Helps with Medical Costs

If you consider how much the long-term medical costs could be for an unaltered dog or cat, the savings can add up quickly. Many people don’t get their pets spayed or neutered because of cost, but it’s much cheaper than repeated vet visits for illnesses. There are also many low-cost spay and neuter clinics to help with affordability. Now you can spoil your pets with fun toys for hours of fun rather than spending money on medicines or expensive surgeries.

5.   Reduces Overpopulation

One of the most important reasons to get your pet spayed or neutered is to reduce overpopulation. Unaltered cats and dogs can produce offspring at exponential rates. Estimates show between 6 and 8 million pets enter shelters every year. Sadly, at least half of these get euthanized. As a responsible pet owner, it’s your job to do your part in combating the devastating overcrowding situation. The shelters are doing all they can with sometimes extremely limited resources.

Making an Impact

Getting your pet spayed or neutered is a significant way for you to make a positive impact on animals everywhere. Not only will it help the dire overpopulation problem, but it will also extend the life of your animal and prevent future health conditions. Most of us would give anything to have our furry friends with us a little longer, and the studies show spaying and neutering could give us up to three more years with them! If you’ve recently gotten a pet, please consider talking to your vet about the best time to spay or neuter.