There are a multitude of reasons owners choose to spay or neuter their pets, including factors related to health and behavior, and concerns over the current overpopulation crisis in companion animals.  With regards to the latter, there are currently far more animals in need of a home than homes looking for a new pet, and the birth of yet another litter means that, even if the entire liter is adopted, there are even fewer homes to go around.

Health Benefits

Spaying and neutering alike help to prevent several kinds of diseases in cats and dogs.  A spayed cat or dog has no risk of uterine cancer or infection.  Additionally, spaying performed on your pet before she goes into her first heat cycle greatly reduces her risk of breast cancer, which is lethal in roughly half of dogs and 90 percent of cats.  Neutering, similarly, prevents many diseases of the genital and urinary system, including testicular tumors, hyperplasia (enlargement), prostate infections, perianal tumors, perineal hernias, and prostatic cysts, all of which are prone to occur in later life.

Behavioral Benefits

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Although these cycles vary from animal to animal, an intact female cat will generally go into heat for four or five days every three weeks or so during the mating season.  During this period, females will loudly yowl, and urinate as much as possible in as many places as possible (including your floor and furniture), trying to attract mates.  However, female dogs and cats who have been spayed no longer go into heat.

 

In male dogs, neutering reduces both dog-on-dog aggression and tendency to roam away from home.  Both of these behavioral issues are in large part born out of desire for a mate.  The dangers of the former are obvious, and a freely roaming dog is faced with numerous hazards, including traffic, poisoning, other animals, abuse, and shelters who cannot identify you as the owner.  Male cats experience similar behavioral benefits, and are also less likely to urinate in order to mark their territory.

The Process

Before we can begin, Pre-Anesthetic blood work has to be performed.  This will check the status of the kidney and liver.  Because the kidneys and liver are responsible for filtering the anesthesia out of the bloodstream, a problem with either of these major organs might pose a threat to your pet’s safety when going under.  These problems may be asymptomatic; invisible until revealed by the bloodwork, and can affect even young pets.

 

After the blood work confirms that we can safely proceed, your pet will be given an injection for sedation.  During this time, an IV catheter will be present to allow for easy access in the case of an emergency.  It will be the task of one of our trained veterinary technicians to perform surgical monitoring.  It will be the task of this technician to keep the surgeon informed about factors such as patient’s temperature, blood pressure, respiration, oxygen level, and heart rate.  After the surgery is done, your pet will be put in a recovery area.  The patient will there be given pain relief medication and diligently observed until he or she is wakes up. At World of Animals at Mayfair, we recommend your pet wears an Elizabethan collar (cone) at home to prevent licking the incision, and continued medication for the pain. In the 2 weeks following the procedure, your pet will need to be well-rested, and activity which is not necessary should be limited.

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