What is it?
and neutering results in pets that are unable to reproduce. Under most
circumstances, that is the best course for the pet and its human
What are the advantages?
removes the ovaries and the uterus of the female pet. The pet will not
contribute to the pet over population problem and can also receive some
health benefits. The ovaries will not become cancerous. The surgery, if
done around 6 months of age, greatly minimizes the chance of the pet
developing mammary cancer. With the uterus removed, developing
pyometria (an infection of the uterus) cannot happen.
removes the testicles of the male. This means the pet cannot contribute
to the pet overpopulation problem. It also means the male cannot
develop testicular cancer. The male hormone (testosterone, which is
mainly produced in the testicles) can cause the prostate (not present
in cats) to enlarge. This can lead to problems with urination and
passing stools, which neutering almost certainly avoids. Many males
will have aggressive tendencies and a strong drive to roam, looking for
females in season. If neutered around 6 months of age, those problems
What are the disadvantages?
spayed or neutered, there is no turning back. These operations cannot
be reversed, so it is impossible to change your mind about having
puppies or kittens in the future.
Female dogs sometimes develop a
problem holding their urine as they become older. This is almost always
manageable with medication.
When choosing where to have the surgery done, here are some important questions to ask:
Does the veterinarian who will perform the surgery give a physical exam
in your presence to look for potential problems and to discuss the
surgery and aftercare with you?
2. Is preanesthetic
testing (like clotting tests) and monitoring during anesthesia offered
as safety options to you?
3. Is the gas anesthetic
Isoflurane (one of the safest anesthetic agents available, even in
human hospitals) provided as the routine anesthetic agent?
4. Is a separate, sterilized pack used for each surgery, not shared among several surgical patients?
Does the surgeon use a separate set of sterile gloves for each patient
and is he/she wearing a sterile gown during the surgery?
Are absorbable sutures used to close the skin incision to minimize the
irritation and the chewing the pet might do, as well as to avoid an
additional trip to the hospital to remove them? Are absorbable sutures
7. Is the pet kept overnight at the
hospital to minimize activity that might result in problems right after
8. Are there rechecks provided at no
charge if you are concerned about any problems that might be developing
shortly after the surgery?
9. Are the ears checked automatically to make sure no ear infections or foreign objects are present?
10. Is pain control available if needed?
All these services are provided at Ojai Pet Hospital for our spay and neuter patients.