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Choosing not to neuter

Got a new, young, furry love in your life? This is the place for you to ask all of your questions-big or small! Just remember that you are receiving advice from other dog owners and lovers... not professionals. If you have a major problem, always seek the advice of a vet or behaviorist! Most important is to remember to have fun with your new fur baby.

  
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Miro

Troublemaker
 
 
Barked: Mon Jul 9, '12 7:43pm PST 
I want to keep Miro intact to help keep him driven to work like I'm going to want him to, however I have never kept an unaltered dog and while I will make sure he never has an oops and breeds I don't know what to expect. Will his behavior be different them my altered dogs? Will he be harder to handle? Will training be more difficult? I am very much the pack leader in my household and my dogs know it, but will he be harder to teach that to? Also is marking normally an issue with in tact dogs? None of my altered males mark in the house at all. And I can't stand males that do. Also any other tips anyone wants to throw in would be great. And let me reiterate that I will MAKE SURE he never breeds unintentionally.
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Jackson Tan

Lad about town
 
 
Barked: Mon Jul 9, '12 8:01pm PST 
My entire male doesn't mark inside, but outside is another story ... however, I got him as an adult where the behaviour was already ingrained, so I think it might be easier to control if you start with a puppy. I've found he does not like other entire males and also some neuters cause issues. He is fine with females.

Personality wise he is very stubborn but that might just be him and nothing to do with him still having his equipment. He is also very submissive towards me at home, but outside it's pretty much a different story and he's not too keen on doing what he's told. laugh out loud

I find him no harder to handle than the neutered male I used to live with, although he's definitely not a dog for everyone being a very intense character. Intact dogs can be very hardheaded which is something to be aware of. He's definitely not dog park material and I have to select playmates very carefully.

They also need high fences to make sure they don't escape and make any oops babies, especially if the dog is athletic (and they do tend to be more athletic as they become very big and muscular from all the testosterone, lol.)

As long as you're responsible and aware of potential issues, there really shouldn't be a problem.
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Miro

Troublemaker
 
 
Barked: Mon Jul 9, '12 8:32pm PST 
Thanks for the response! Marking outside doesn't bother me, I just hate when they do it in the house. As far as keeping him in the yard and away from bitches in heat, no problem there. My yard is escape proof. Also do you think if I socialize him extremely well he will be fine with male dogs?
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Jackson Tan

Lad about town
 
 
Barked: Mon Jul 9, '12 8:42pm PST 
Hard to say. He might be dog social as a pup and then become only dog tolerant when he reaches sexual maturity. My other dog profile, Kraka, remained dog social all his life and currently lives with a young entire male, where as Jackson would be incapable of tolerating that. Socialize the pup like crazy, keep your fingers crossed, but at the same time don't be too surprised if he 'changes his mind' so to speak around the 18 month mark.

If you are concerned neuter after sexual maturity, you will have a mentally and physically developed dog by that point, where a neuter won't make much difference to drive, but might make relations with other males smoother.
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Miro

Troublemaker
 
 
Barked: Mon Jul 9, '12 8:51pm PST 
Yeah that's something I have considered as well, is 18 months mature enough? Or would waiting until 2 be a better option if in fact he does need to be neutered to remain dog friendly.
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UCH Onyx TT,- CGC

Do you even- lift?
 
 
Barked: Mon Jul 9, '12 9:00pm PST 
It's entirely possible for an intact male to be fine with other males, neutered or intact. I think on the whole, the way a dog interacts with other dogs has more to do with genetics and socialization than whether it's neutered or not.

Marking indoors is a housetraining issue. My intact male has never marked in the house. The bf's intact male tried to mark in a PetSmart once (which I suspect was because another dog had marked there), was corrected, and hasn't tried it again.

Some people say intact males are harder to train, get distracted more easily, ect. I suppose it's possible but it isn't something I've experienced, and considering all the very highly trained intact male dogs out there, I don't think it's generally a big problem.

The age a dog hits maturity depends on breed. As far as I know, Australian Shepherds don't mature particularly slowly, and since they aren't a very large breed, I would think 18 months would be fine. But I would definitely check on that with someone who knows the breed better.

This thread asked a very similar question to yours and got a lot of great responses: Raising a puppy intact. The search function on Dogster is very wanting, I just happened to remember that one.

Edited by author Mon Jul 9, '12 9:02pm PST

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Miro

Troublemaker
 
 
Barked: Mon Jul 9, '12 9:23pm PST 
Thanks for the link to that thread, very helpful. I guess I'm just apprehensive because it's something I've never done. I'm very excited to give it a go though, now that I've done more research on the subject I definitely feel it is healthier for the animal.
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Duke

I'm Adopted!
 
 
Barked: Mon Jul 9, '12 10:01pm PST 
Duke is not yet neutered and I do not have too many issues with him. My neighbors gave him to me, and I am guessing he is around a year old (give or take a few months)...so he is not yet fully mature.

I have no issues with him marking things-indoor or out. In fact, it is my neutered dog Twister that does the marking outdoors. Duke actually still squats, lol.

The main issue I have with him in regards to him still being intact is his tendency to hump dogs he first meets (he did it a ton to my 2 dogs until after he had been with us awhile; Twister is docile and would just stand there and take it, Echo hated him until he stopped so I would always step in whenever he tried to do it). This is not something most dogs they have just met would appreciate, and may scare timid dogs.

He also likes to hold barking contests with my neighbor's Boxers, but I think that is more from him having lived with them and is now staying with us.

He seems to be pretty good social-wise towards people and dogs (though I have yet to test that fully with strange dogs/people). I will say that even if an intact dog is social, if he come across other intact male dogs, those boys may not be as gracious...so even if your pup ends up a social butterfly when fully mature, you will still need to take precautions around other dogs (male or female). Heh heh, just realized how masculine 'social butterfly' sounds. smile

He does seem to try to get out of the yard (or wherever he is being kept) a lot, and will squeeze past open doors so definitely need to keep an eagle eye out for things like that...especially when there are females around who are in heat!

Good luck with your boy! I definitely think it is healthier for dogs (and cats) both mentally and physically to at least wait until they are fully mature to have them neutered or spayed. I think being neutered while still a pup played a part in Twister being shy and having weak nerves (other part simply genetics). I probably will have Duke neutered later on though.way to go
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(Indie) CH- Herdabout- Tri N 4 I

HURRY UP!
 
 
Barked: Sun Jul 15, '12 5:30pm PST 
I have an 18 month old and he is intact cause the breeder had been showing him in Conformation and we are now planning on breeding him within the next year (I will have a house by then and be able to add Sheltie #3...I know...I am a crazy Sheltie lady!)

He is fine in the house with marking...it gets to be bad when he is with the breeder...where their are other unneutered males around so he tends to mark indoors there.
At home he is good. My other dog is a neutered male and the 2 of them get along well.

My family seems to think his personality is related to him being intact, but his mom had a "my way or no way" attitude and his dad has a "lets see how much trouble I can get in to" attitude...so he is a performance dog with a nice drive and an off switch.

Remember that there is a higher risk of certain health issues if unneutered. He has gotten a UTI but intact males can also be at a higehr risk for cancers.

All in all...some people support it...some don't...good luck smile

EDITED TO ADD
I had Indie at the dog park at 10 weeks old (with dogs I knew) so he has been well socialized...but the minute he sees a female...a switch goes and he is licking and jumping and only one thing on his mind LOL
So escape proof yard is a must! And if you meet dogs on walks, there is no harm in asking if they are male or female...intact or not smile
I sometimes say no to meeting females cause I see his drive and intensity when he spots them...others he is good smile

Edited by author Sun Jul 15, '12 5:32pm PST

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y

dog-sitter in- charge.
 
 
Barked: Sun Jul 15, '12 5:39pm PST 
It also depends on what your breeder has stipulated in your contract.
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