View Full Version : spaying females

16th May 2006, 08:24 PM
hi all. my puppy jasmine is almost 8 months old now and i still havent got her spayed yet because a friend told me that itsbetter to wait till dogs are a year old, and then other people tell me 6 months so i havent a clue what to do.... also i want to know what fruit if any is safe to feed cavaliers, i know that they cant eat grapes.

16th May 2006, 09:59 PM
Fruit is fine to feed and many cavaliers love it (or wioll learn to! It is very healthy for them and a good lo cal treat alternative) -- in general grapes and especially raisins can be dangerous even in small amounts, and apple seeds are also dangerous. I have a list of dangerous foods here:


My guys like pieces of apple, pear, berries and banana. Also veggies.

As for spaying -- you can wait until a year but you will then need to go through a heat. You need to be extremely careful -- basically keep her totally inside for the three weeks of her heat -- she should be around the time she is going to go into one around now, actually, if she hasn't yet.

Most vets do not feel there is any point in waiting until a year or more. Some feel there are health risks associated with waiting after the first heat -- one of which is of course risk of pregnancy, which is a higher death risk than many of the potential ailments any dog will encounter in a lifetime. That is one reason why breeding always needs to be such a careful decision.

I'd suggest having a good talk with your vet. Personally I would spay a female by the age yours now is, as most people find a heat more difficult to manage than they expect and the result can be an unwanted litter of puppies. If you wish to wait you will need to be extremely careful with her. Male dogs of all types will scale high garden walls easily to get to a bitch in heat or may attack while on walks and she should never be off lead anywhere when in heat, even for a second. As breeders of cavaliers themselves note, the first mating for bitches of this breed is also often very traumatic. Males can be very violent and it may be a large breed dog that gets to her as well. So figure out what you feel capable of managing and base your decision on that. Most people will neuter females at 6 months and most vets recommend that as a good age. The argument about waiting is to allow her to reach full sexual maturity but as noted, this involves increased responsibility for the owner and I don't think many feel there is much difference in waiting. I don't, but I know some do.

17th May 2006, 08:28 AM
thanks a million karlin, very sound advice. if jasmine goes into heat how noticeable is it for me to know that she has it or is it just that dogs would go mad if i brought her out....i think now would be a good idea to get her done, and i know its better for her, but me and my hubby and mum would be worried sick about her going through the operation even though we know it has to be done... :yikes .... am i allowed to hold her paw throughout the operation? :D

17th May 2006, 09:28 AM
It's a simple operation and actually only takes 10-20 minutes to perform. By contrast, going through endless heats is often very stressful for a dog, setting aside other considerations.

You should call your vet for advice on wtaching for her being in heat but at this age I'd really get her in immediately. If she goes into heat you will have to wait many months before she can be spayed.

Here's a description of what heat is like:

Once a female dog reaches puberty it begins its regular cycles of Estrus or heat which allow the dog to release eggs and reproduce. Most females have 2 cycles per year. Signs that your dog is in heat include include vaginal discharge which is clear, bleeding and swelling of the vulva. There is increased restlessness and there may be increased urination. You also may notice stray dogs hanging around your house, though the female will not accept mating at this point. This early period of heat called Proestrus, lasts between 4 -15 days depending on the size and breed of the dog along with other factors.

The next stage in the estrous cycle is the actual Estrus/heat where the dog will accept a mate and can get pregnant. Unless you are a professional dog breeder you should spay the dog before before her first heat. Some vets will spay a dog during its first heat. This Estrus lasts between 4 - 8 days and signs include the discharge stopping, ovulation (the eggs are released) and pregnancy is possible. If the dog becomes pregnant the gestation time is 58-63 days. There are no visible signs until the last 3 weeks of pregnancy when the teats will enlarge, the belly will swell and finally the birth will occur.

The 3rd stage of the cycle is called Diestrus and lasts 6 - 10 weeks. Many hormonal changes take place and the uterine walls thicken. Dogs that haven't become pregnant go through 'false pregnancy' where their mammary glands may enlarge and produce milk. They may mother toys, moan or whine, prefer extra attention or extra solitude and will show no interest in mating. The last stage in the cycle is Anestrus and will last for 15 weeks. There won't be any hormonal activity, milk production, or interest in mating. If the dog had become pregnant the birth would have already occurred and the mother will be lactating and engaging in typical mothering behaviour until she is ready to wean her puppies.

from http://www.pets.ca/pettips/tips-57.htm

Also be aware:

The normal canine companion will benefit greatly from being spayed at an early age before she has her first heat cycle. Problems that can develop later in life, such as mammary cancer and uterine infections, are virtually eliminated if an ovariohysterectomy (spay) is performed before she experiences her first heat cycle.

You can probably get her in this week -- my own vets do spays and neuters on Fridays for example.

17th May 2006, 04:04 PM
Lady got pyometra and had to have a hysterectomy (spelling!) if she had been spayed she woudn"t have got that she nearly died of blood poisoning.

17th May 2006, 05:39 PM
sarah thats awful what happened i bet it gave u a scare, i hope shes ok now. i have decided to take jasmine into the vets next week, i will give them a ring tomorrow to sort stuff out....i would need to go to the vets myself as i am sick of going into heat every month...... :yikes :p

17th May 2006, 06:26 PM
i would need to go to the vets myself as i am sick of going into heat every month...... :yikes :p

hey I am reaching that point myself!! :lol: :lol:

here's a hint too -- rather than going for an elizabethan collar you can take a babygrow from a second hand shop and cut a hole for her tail and snap that over her to ekep her from pulling her stitches. many dogs never even bother with the stitches but it is a useful item to have around anyway fo anytime you might want to keep her from pulling on any wound. Much less stressful for them than a collar too.

17th May 2006, 09:36 PM
:lol: at babygrow.. i read that post to my husband and he couldnt stop laughing....i could just see jasmine in it ...i could even stick a dummy in her mouth too, she would love it :) ...i could put my underwear on her cause shes always getting them out of the washing basket and carrying them around with her.....karlin your replies are very helpful and much appreciated.thanks a lot. will keep you posted xo

17th May 2006, 09:51 PM
At what age to Cav females usually experience first heat? I'm getting a 6 month-old pup and had planned to have her spayed.

17th May 2006, 10:55 PM
Okay...so what is a 'babygrow'...I have no idea.

17th May 2006, 11:17 PM
Okay...so what is a 'babygrow'...I have no idea.

Me either. Please explain to those of us on the other side of the pond! :D

17th May 2006, 11:36 PM
A baby onesie! (a one piece)

17th May 2006, 11:43 PM
Females can possibly (but rarely) go into heat any time from around 5 months on but after 6 months is more the norm. That's why most vets will recommend a neuter at 6 months to be on the safe side. :) Every now and then there's one that starts younger than usual though. Same with kittens -- some will start as early as 4 months. :yikes

18th May 2006, 02:11 AM
Rory wrote:
A baby onesie! (a one piece)

Ohhhhh! That is one good idea! ;)

18th May 2006, 12:25 PM
I call them growbags - as my nieces and nephews always seemed to be growing out of them......

18th May 2006, 01:55 PM
I call them growbags