Pros/cons of spaying(11 Posts)
I really don't want to spay my dog, as I am so worried about her having an operation if anything goes wrong, and because she will be kept at the vets away from me to recover. The only problem is that she has been in heat twice and has possibly had two phantom pregnancies. She is currently looking very sad and is wining when I try to take away her cuddly 'raccoon' that she is licking
Could you let me know what your opinions are on spaying, and the risks/benefits associated with this?
I sympathise. My pup is booked in for hers at the end of the month. I'm seriously dreading it
My decision list came down to this
Pros (not in order of importance) No seasons and associated hassle. No unwanted pregnancy. No chance of potentially fatal pyometra or ovarian cancer. Reduced risk of mammary cancer
Cons. Actually going through having it done. The small risk associated with any surgery. Small chance of urinary incontinence
If she's had two phantom pregnancies she is at increased risk of developing a pyometra (infection in the womb, usually a couple of months after a season) which can be fatal unless emergency surgery is carried out.
Pros - no seasons, no false pregnancy, no unwanted pregnancy, no running off when on heat and being injured, no pyometra, no ovarian or uterine cancer, reduced risk of mammary cancer.
Cons - small risks associated with anaesthesia and surgery, she'd be away from you for one day, though if she is anxious you can ask for her to be given a premed (sedative/anti-anxiety) when she is admitted, increased chance of weight gain if you don't take appropriate measures to reduce her calorie intake, increased risk of urinary incontinence (though quite small in a mature bitch who has had a couple of seasons)
My little pup will be done in April, 3 months after her season.
If spayed before 3rd season there is an 86% reduction in the risk of mammary tumours.
In unspayed bitches between 8 and 10 years of age 25% of them will get pyometra.
For me those two facts alone mean that spaying is the right way forward without thinking about lack of hassle reduction in risk of pregnancy.
One of my dogs had pyometra when I took her in for a spay. If I had not of taken her in she would have died. We didn't even know!
Since then I have had them all done as we have gone through life. It's very rare fir anything to go wrong. My youngest was full of the joys of spring when I went to pick her up a few hours later and behaved as normal.
There are also now a small number of vets who offer "keyhole" spays which are less invasive.
I think the worries and proven stats on pyo and mammary tumours in unspayed older bitches alone would be enough for me versus the one day she's away getting her operation. We've previously had fosters going through their season and quite honestly they were miserable, off their food, clingy and fed up with even our neutered males turning into sex pests. I've looked after a number of bitches post-spay and most are back on their feet surprisingly quickly and with good, effective pain relief and some TLC will recover well.
What bakingtins said about increased risk pyometra if she's had false pregnancies. When she gets a pyo - and with this dog I think it's a fair bet that's it's gonna be when not if she gets a pyo- she'll still going to need spayed, she'll just be sicker, older and need to stay in for longer.
Pyos aren't always immediately obvious either - the one I spayed the week before last was owned by an experienced dog owner and was so toxic by the time she arrived, I think she would have been dead or near it by the next day if we hadn't got her on fluids and got on and spayed her. She is doing very well but had to stay in overnight after the operation (would've been home the same day after a normal spay). A pyo spay takes me nearly twice as long as a normal spay, with a bigger incision and a longer total time under anaesthetic. Between a blood sample (to check the toxins from the pus hadn't wrecked her kidneys and caused her immune system to attack her red cells), fluids and an overnight stay, and the fact that the surgery took longer, the pyo spay ended up more than 3 times the cost of a normal spay. (I didn't charge for the fact that I stayed behind after hours to do the spay, but if the owner had waited another few hours to lift the phone then he would have had to go to the out of hours clinic and it would have cost even more).
Puppies. A friend of mine had to postpone spaying due to finances, her dc left the door open, bitch now due to whelp ( sp) next week.
Tiny bitch, no idea what the sire was, good chance she'll need a section, so more cost & puppies to look after/ re home.
We looked after my BIL's Doberman bitch for a couple of years after he needed time to relocate had a bereavement. She hadn't been spayed and developed pyometra and very nearly died. She was rushed in for an emergency operation and the wound was HUGE, the whole length of her belly.
Much better the op is done in controlled circumstances and smaller wound. Our dog was neutered (I know its a smaller op than spaying) two weeks ago and I was really anxious about him having it done, I nearly never took him in. Was worried about him being alone in vets recovering and, honestly he didn't like it but it was ok. He was still partly zonked out on the aesthetic when I picked him up so don't think he really knew what was going on.
We fought our vet to let ours have one season, which was a compromise as our breeder had recommended we waited until she was 18 months old and fully mature, she's now got spay incontinence and on medication for the rest of her life I wish we'd listened to her.
Thanks guys. I've been thinking it through and decided to spay - she has been miserable these past few days xxx
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