Spay and Neuter

Spaying and neutering your pets – especially if you let them outside unsupervised – can significantly decrease the opportunity for continued pet overpopulation. According to The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, over seven million pets are put into shelters in the United States annually. Of those companion animals, nearly three million will be euthanized (put to sleep). Not only does spaying or neutering keep animals from reproducing, but it also can improve their health, reduce their risk for cancer, and stop unwanted behavior like fighting or spraying. At Middle Creek Veterinary Hospital, we proudly offer spay and neuter services for cats, dogs, and exotic animals.

Spay vs. Neuter: What’s the Difference?

Spaying and neutering, also called “fixing” your pet, is a procedure that ultimately prevents them from reproducing.

Spaying is a surgical procedure in which the surgeon removes a female’s ovaries and often the uterus, preventing her from becoming pregnant. For this procedure, she will have to be put under anesthesia, during which we will consistently monitor her vital signs. We follow strict protocols to ensure her safety throughout the process.

Conversely, neutering involves removing a male’s testicles so that he can no longer impregnate females. As with spaying, we will put your male pet under anesthesia while continuously monitoring him.

Benefits of Spaying and Neutering

Aside from preventing unwanted pregnancies, there are many benefits to spaying and neutering our companion animals. These procedures contribute to the overall health and longevity of your furry, scaley, and feathery friends.

Spaying a female animal can protect her from potentially deadly diseases, such as pyometra (uterine infection), breast cancer, or cancer of other reproductive organs.

Neutering your male pet also provides numerous health and behavioral benefits. Neutered males are generally less driven to escape from home and roam about the neighborhood (or beyond), looking for a girlfriend. Keeping the boys at home decreases the likelihood of being hit by a car or fighting with other male animals. Neutering also reduces the risk of reproductive cancer, such as prostate or testicular cancer.

When to Spay or Neuter a Dog?

The optimal time to spay or neuter your dog can depend on various factors, such as their breed, size, and overall health. For many of our patients, we recommend spay surgery while your dog is still a puppy and before female puppies start their first reproductively active cycle, commonly known as going into “heat.” This usually happens around six months of age.

There are many pros and cons of early vs. late spaying and neutering for male and female dogs that will grow to weigh over 50 pounds as adults. Please contact us to determine the best time for reproductive surgery if you have acquired a larger breed.

While we can spay or neuter adult dogs, there could be additional risks to consider. Our staff is happy to discuss these potential drawbacks with you.

When to Spay or Neuter a Cat?

Like dogs, we recommend spaying or neutering your cat as a kitten, typically between four and five months of age. Fixing a female kitten at this age will keep her from going into heat and accidentally getting pregnant. Neutering male kittens before five months of age will prevent them from impregnating a female and will generally keep them from developing habits like spraying or fighting.

Even if your cat is in heat, we can still spay her if waiting is not an option. We can also spay or neuter adult cats, which may still improve their bad habits. Please remember that it may take your cat longer to recover from this procedure in adulthood.

If you need help determining when to spay or neuter your cat, please let us know. We are happy to answer any questions you may have.

spay and neuter exotic pets

Spaying and Neutering Exotic Animals

Spaying and neutering are not limited to dogs and cats. At Middle Creek, we proudly offer spay and neuter services for exotic animals. Whether you have a hamster, parakeet, monitor lizard, or any other exotic companion, it’s crucial to understand their options. There are many benefits to spaying and neutering your exotics, even if you don’t have a male and female of the same species.

For example, if they aren’t spayed, female rabbits and guinea pigs have up to an 80% chance of developing uterine cancer in adulthood. Male ferrets, on the other hand, tend to smell terrible if they haven’t been neutered. Depending on the species of your exotic, spaying and neutering can also improve their behavior.

Our Middle Creek Veterinary Hospital & Exotic Animal Clinic team provides spay and neuter services for a range of pets, including dogs, cats, and exotic animals. We will always prioritize the well-being of your furry, feathery, or scaley friend throughout the entire procedure. Please schedule an appointment today to help give your pet the best life possible.