|Barked: Thu Aug 19, '10 9:02am PST |
|Waiting to neuter your dog til the 10 months or 1 so they can mature is like when people say its good for your female to go through her first heat
Not really. That is done under a misguided old adage. "Common wisdom" which isn't really that wise. There's no reason to wait for a bitch to go through her first heat if you're planning on an early spay, anyway.
Waiting until physical maturity is done for very real reasons - minimizing health risks.
(it increases the risk of breast cancer if they have a first heat).
Not in any statistically significant way. The statistics I presume you see are misrepresented as absolute risks, when they are actually relative risks. IIRC, any time before the third heat will reduce the risk for breast cancer about the same amount.
I firmly believe in spaying or neutering, non neutered dogs can have prostate cancer or prostate problems, testicular cancer, and other hormonal disorders that can occur.
Intact dogs have a four-fold lower incidence of prostate cancer. It isn't a significant amount (2.4% in altered males, .6% in intact males), but altering does increase risk of prostate cancers.
Most intact dogs develop an enlarged prostate, which is usually asymptomatic, but can have side effects.
Testicular cancer is very rare, and even more rare that a dog dies from it. It is up to the individual whether they consider this a significant enough risk - and I imagine this might change based on breed (Goldens, for example, are at higher risk for most cancers).
As far as hormonal disorders...wouldn't you think that far more likely to occur when you are removing a hormone from a dog's body???
Size doesnt really matter as long as the tesicles are descended they can be removed. We do little tiny 6 pound chihuahuas at 6 months.
This much is true . Pediatric neuters *can* help prevent behavior problems like marking & humping, but it isn't a guarantee. A very small advantage of a pediatric neuter is that the recovery time is much, much quicker, although we are weighing a period of a few weeks, against 18-20 years of life (in tiny breeds).
If you plan to alter, it is probably best to wait until physical maturity to reduce the risk of various health problems, but if you feel you can't deal with sexual behaviors which can present in an intact dog - nobody is going to blame you for an early neuter. Your dog and you are meant to co-exist, and if these behaviors make that more difficult...well, I don't believe in pre-emptive surgery to fix behavior problems, but that's my personal view. If you want to minimize the risk of those problems showing up in the first place, an early neuter is fine.
A lot of the health problems too are not so prevalent in smaller breeds (ie: giant breeds are more likely to suffer from skeletal disorders as a result of pediatric neuters). Keep in mind, too, these are only risks - lots of people get puppies from the pound, neutered as early as 4 months or more, and they never have any problems their entire life. It's a risk, not a guarantee.
Whatever age you chose, OP, there are pros and cons. My personal opinion is that those pros and cons even out best after physical maturity - but that is relative to me and my lifestyle. Take a look at yours, and weigh them for yourself .
Edited by author Thu Aug 19, '10 9:05am PST
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