Hi all, my Staffy is 7 months old (8 at the end of this month) and so I rang the vets to enquire about getting her spayed. I was advised that they prefer a bitch to have gone through one season first before spaying them due to the increased risk in incontinence later in life. A friend and I have both conducted some internet research and have both come up with the info that this only applies to larger breed dogs, although I had advised the vets that my bitch is a Staffy.
I'm conflicted; I would prefer her to be spayed before she has a season partly because its what I expected and partly due to the results of my research. I do trust the vet practice having known them for years and perhaps they do know best, but I feel uncomfortable with their decision. I'm going to look up other local vets and see about getting another opinion.
So really I'm asking you guys what would you do in my place? Wait until the dog has a season and then get her spayed, or find a vet who will spay pre-season?
My staffie cross was spayed at 6 months as there was no way I was going to navigate her going into season.
Bless, she took her cuddly toy chicken called chuck and when she came back he was soaked through from where she'd been sucking on him (she was part of a litter found abandoned at 2 weeks, hence the sucking of toys).
We did wait until after a season (which ended up being two as when we booked her in the vet was not happy she was not coming into season again) but who knows whether it made any difference. I read up on a lot and there seemed to be more in favour of leaving it a little than doing it too early. Particularly for me I had read that early spaying was more likely to keep them puppyish and I didn't want that - she's an eternal puppy as it is! Who knows whether it made any difference - she was possibly a bit calmer and more of a softy after her first season.
The season was a bit of a PITA with all the bleeding everywhere and we were very careful about keeping her in as I certainly didn't want to add to the unwanted puppies in the world! She went a bit stir crazy at the greatly reduced exercise.
Sorry if none of this is helpful! I think, in balance, I would probably do again what we did. But the risk of mammary cancers does increase slightly after a season, I believe, so swings and roundabouts. All I can advise is go with what seems right to you and what your vet is happy with. My vet seemed, in balance, in favour of waiting so that reassured me to take the path we did.