The Importance of Spaying and Neutering
Unless you have a purebred for breeding purposes, spaying or neutering is recommended. Millions of puppies and dogs, many of which are purebred, are euthanized each year because there are not enough homes for all the unwanted pets.
Spaying (for females)
Spaying is the removal of the ovaries and uterus. It involves giving the dog a general anesthetic and abdominal surgery. The veterinarian may keep your puppy or dog in the hospital for a few days, depending on her age and condition. Female dogs mature sooner than males, and spaying should be done before the first heat cycle. The operation will eliminate heat cycles and possibly contribute to longer life by reducing or eliminating the chance of many health problems. If your female puppy or dog is not spayed, you will need to keep her confined to the indoors until her heat cycle is over. If you do not, male dogs will be attracted to her scent and may climb or dig their way into your yard, resulting in unwanted pregnancy and puppies. A heat cycle generally lasts three weeks.
Neutering (for males)
Castration is the removal of the testicles through surgery. Neutering is a relatively safe procedure and in most cases, produces mild soreness and requires only a brief hospital stay. Consult your veterinarian about the best age to neuter your puppy or dog, although it is usually best to neuter before the dog reaches puberty so he will not develop sexually related behaviors. These behaviors include an aggressive temperament, roaming, “marking territory” in the house, or mounting objects or people. Neutering may also help reduce his risk of developing prostate infections or prostate cancer.