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Thread: Neutering at a young age???

  1. #31
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    i had zack neutered at just over 7 months, and i'm glad i did. He was changing rapidly at that time and was developing some new behaviors, not a problem really, like Sandy said, he's a cavalier, he was sweet and cooperative, obedient and nonaggressive, but he was getting a bit sexualized

    just before i got him neutered i had discovered dog parks (two weeks before), he was ecstatic at dog parks and i was overjoyed to see him having so much fun, most imporantly, the freedom, to know he was safe running around freely, the other owners paid attention to their dogs, and in about 5 or 6 visits between when i discovered the dog park and when i got him neutered, i never saw any dog fights or violence, but i was getting uptight, especially after reading a thread on here about neutering, afraid a female in heat would come to the park, i didn't want zack to get somebody pregnant, and i worried that other male dogs who were much larger might be more of a threat to zack if he was unneutered. I wanted to be relaxed and not worried about Zack running loose with other dogs, that's one reason i decided to do it at that time.

    He started lifting his leg for the first time while at the dog park and i was worried about the onset of marking behavior.

    I tried to research and find out information about potential health risks of neutering and was not able to find much, so i went ahead and had it done, and i like the noticeable changes in zack as a result, not so much changes but the arresting of tendencies he was beginning to get.

    He's very docile and happy. I did not want to see him become increasingly frantic about other dogs, which was starting to happen, lots of shrill arf-ing when he'd see other dogs at a distance, very emotional and, well, frantic. That was the biggest behavioral or emotional reason for my choice to get him neutered, and that frantic intensity gradually died down following the neutering. He still gets excited about other dogs, but now, he listens to me when i 'shhh' him if he arfs, and he calms himself down when i tell him it's ok, 'easy boy, calm down, quiet, it's OK,' and then i don't have to struggle with him or keep my attention on him, he becomes more calm and quiet in public where he used to be much more excitable and not in a happy way, about other dogs and people too.

    It's been over a month and a half and so far there's no sign of him slowing down, he's actually been more active, like, up all night doing stuff, not sleeping, not sleepy, interested in stuff, entertaining himself, playing, bringing me a ball to throw, chewing toys. so i haven't yet seen him grow more slothful which is one of the downsides of neutering.

    But i am still interested in hearing all sides of the subject and am interested in the reasons any respectable breeder who cares about their puppies would ask puppy buyers to postpone neutering until one year. I ask because i don't know the reasons and am curious about it. i know there are good reasons not to neuter/spay, but i don't know what they are.

    The breeder my daughter Lisa got her cavalier Belle from told her to do it right after the first heat, otherwise the risk of breast cancer would be higher.

  2. #32
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    To arrest the natural maturation of a dog does good things and not so good things. If you wait until they are about a year-- they are basically full grown. They are sexually mature. The characteristics the make males beefier and females softer looking can be there. One group has stated that they suggest that athletic dogs should be altered after they are full grown. Someone earlier may have posted that link. I believe it was Dr Hutch that had stated you shouldn't alter a female if she has puppy vaginitis. She will never outgrow that condition if you alter her at that time. There is a slight risk increase each time a female has a season to get aggresive mammory tumors. I had a rehomed cocker that was spay at 7 years (never bred). She lived to be almost 15 years old and she didn't have tumors-- her kidney and liver functions were failing. There are other cancers that can increase due to the decrease in hormones. I believe it is an osteosarcoma that is higher in spay females.
    I want what is best for my dogs in the long run-- I have a nasty contract that people have to sign if they want a pup. I as a breeder, NEVER want to see one of my dogs used like the ones in the Pennsylvania puppymill bust. I am not anti altering. I have a female I am going to have spay-- just when I was going to make the appointment- I found out a dog died on the table during a neuter at our vets-- he had a reaction to the gas. It happens- owners didn't want to pay extra to have the blood tested etc...
    Sandy

  3. #33
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    I have a nasty contract that people have to sign if they want a pup.
    I am sure the nastiness is all structuring in levels of responsibility. It is difficult with living things; it can be hard to be sure owners will do as asked ( eg do the right thing for each animal whatever that might be) and this always weighs heavily on anyone homing a dog or cat, kitten or puppy, whether relating to general care or neutering. In rescue there's the extra level of frustration of homing animals that are generally already considered 'surplus' by previous owners, or the unwanted result of random matings, and to put so much work in only to have those animals go on to have their own unwanted litters is exasperating. This must be a real difficulty and dilemma for good breeders too, as each puppy has been so carefully raised and you want to be sure it has the right care.

    With all the cats and dogs I or my family have owned, and which friends have owned, I don't know a single neutered animal that ever had any health issue associated with a spay/neuter outside of some spay incontinence in an elderly bitch (but that could have just been incontinence, full stop). On the other hand I know many older bitches taken into rescue with mammary tumours and related problems due to not having been spayed, and of others who have lost bitches or had them barely pull through with pyometra. I think if vets saw an increase in spay/neuter health issues (rather than more due to not spaying/neutering) they would for a long time, have recommended just tying tubes on males or females as both are possible and just as easy as a spay/neuter -- then the animal in question would not be at risk of conceiving but would retain all its hormones. I still wonder why more people don't just take this option if they have concerns as it addresses the main responsibility issue of preventing litters.

    I think it is important to note too that in my experience on these kinds of dicsussions, the people who have never had any issues with intact dogs and bitches are exactly those who are experienced, responsible owners to begin with, and would be training their dogs as a matter of course. I see the results via general rescue, in both cats and dogs, of animals that have never had any kind of training and behaviour modification, and these are typically the behaviours that have caused the animals to be surrendered to pounds or brought to vets to be pts in the first place.
    Karlin
    Cavaliers: Jaspar Lily Tansy Libby Mindy
    In memory: Lucy Leo
    Cavalier SM Information site:www.smcavaliers.com

  4. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by WoodHaven
    One group has stated that they suggest that athletic dogs should be altered after they are full grown. Someone earlier may have posted that link.
    Sandy
    I think that may have been me. I've been searching all over for that link and can't find it. Must have deleted it somehow. At any rate, that research was one of the reasons we like to see people wait if they can even if we don't consider the Cavalier "athletic". And if they can't or don't want to wait, that's OK too; we just don't want the puppies S/N at 3 months.
    Bruce
    MysticKnight Cavaliers

  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by WoodHaven
    One group has stated that they suggest that athletic dogs should be altered after they are full grown. Someone earlier may have posted that link.
    Sandy
    I think that may have been me. I've been searching all over for that link and can't find it. Must have deleted it somehow. At any rate, that research was one of the reasons we like to see people wait if they can even if we don't consider the Cavalier "athletic". And if they can't or don't want to wait, that's OK too; we just don't want the puppies S/N at 3 months.
    Bruce
    MysticKnight Cavaliers

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeni
    My vet also said that both testies must be down and that his baby teeth need to fall out before neutering. Both testies are down and I am not sure about the baby teeth. I am just concerned that my boy might be too young. There is a lot of talk about spaying females but hardly any opinions or comments on male neutering... so it is quite confusing.
    Numerous vets I've talked to regarding neutering Gus say that as early as 4 months, if the testies are down, is totally fine. Given that, and the behavioral issues we're having with him (his latest is to lift his leg and pee on other dogs! ), Gus is getting neutered this Wednesday. He'll be a week short of 5 months, and I can't wait to see the changes...I hope! If he's still the little creep that he can be, we'll of course continue his bootcamp training regime that we've been doing since we got him!
    Jen, Abbey (Tri Cavalier) & Gus (White Min. Schnauzer)

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