Spaying or neutering your pet is one of the greatest gifts you can provide your pet and your family. These medical procedures help control pet overpopulation and may also prevent medical and behavioral problems from developing, allowing your dog or cat to lead a longer, healthier and happier life.
Why should I spay or neuter my pet?
There are several positive reasons. Spaying or neutering your pet prevents unwanted births positively affects your pet's behavior. Millions of unwanted animals end up in shelters or on the streets each year. By spaying or neutering your pet you will be doing your part to prevent this tragedy. Some statistic to consider,
According to the HSUS (Humane Society of the United States), each year 25 million puppies and kittens are born in the United States far exceeding the number of available homes and far exceeding the resources of America's 4,000 animal shelters resources.
Four million cats and dogs are put to sleep in U.S. shelters each year. This represents one every eight seconds.
Local Animal Control departments throughout the U.S. spend over two billion dollars a year in taxpayers' money just to stay abreast of the problem. It costs $100 dollars a day to capture, house, and feed, and eventually euthanize the animal.
Responsible pet ownership including spaying and neutering is the only solution to the pet overpopulation problem. An un-spayed female dog and her off spring are capable of producing 67,000 offspring in a six-year period.
Thirty percent of the dogs in animal shelters are purebreds and tragically nationwide they only have a fifty percent chance of finding a home.
By spaying or neutering your pet behavior problems can also be prevented or minimized. Sexual behavior in both male and female dogs is reduced following surgery. If it has not already been done, spaying or neutering should be considered for any pet with a behavior problem, regardless of age. Neutering male dogs reduces the urge to roam, urine marking, and mounting, and may reduce some forms of aggression. In female dogs, the inconvenient "heat" cycle is eliminated. Spaying or neutering eliminates or greatly reduces the development of mammary tumors in females and reproductive organ tumors in both sexes. Consult with your veterinarian or veterinary behaviorist for further information.
When should I spay or neuter my pet?
Dogs as young as eight weeks of age can be spayed or neutered safely. Studies suggest that male dogs be neutered before six to eight months of age. For female dogs, the surgery should ideally be performed before their first heat cycle. Cats can be safely spayed or neutered between 5 and 9 months. If you have questions, talk to your veterinarian.
What are the Benefits?
Even though spaying and neutering your pet may be good for the community, people often ask what benefits they will receive. Here are some benefits you and your pet can expect when you have your pet spayed or neutered.
Better Health and Behavior
A dog that is spayed or neutered has no chance of developing uterine or testicular cancer; in females, the risk of breast cancer and urinary infections is drastically reduced. Reproductive cancers are common among older dogs that have been bred. For female cats, having them spayed will prevent them from going through any more heat cycles. Un-spayed females normally come into heat several times a year, and these cycles can last from several days to several weeks, and include such behaviors as spraying of urine (yes, females can spray, too!!), marking with urine, howling, and some other obnoxious behaviors. Neutering a male cat before he reaches puberty almost always prevents completely the development of all mating behavior, which includes spraying urine and marking territory with urine, and the desire to roam outside searching for a mate. This in itself puts the cat at great risk for injury or even death from being hit by cars; being the object of human cruelty; infection and disease from other cats, death from natural predators, and cat fighting.
No Accidental Pregnancies
If your dog or cat accidentally becomes pregnant, you will have to provide additional medical care for her and the puppies or kittens and be responsible for finding good homes for half a dozen or more offspring. One may think that because you can find good homes for your cat or dogs offspring that you are not contributing to the problem. Think again. There are simply not enough "good homes" to go around.
"We continue to see pet owners who, despite our urging, still do not take the time to spay or neuter their pet. The benefits are obvious and significantly reduce the number of pets that we must find homes for."
All pets that are adopted from the Fayette County Animal Shelter are eligible for a 50% off certificate for spay and neutering at local participating veterinarians.
Fayette County Animal Services has one of the highest adoption rates in the state. Animal Services personnel are available to answer questions about spaying and neutering your pet or to assist in the adoption of a pet by calling 770- 631-7210 or visit the shelter at 1262 Highway 74 South, Peachtree City, Georgia. 30269.