Hello-- We have a 7 month old Labrador girl, and on the suggestion of her vet, we've made an appointment to have her spayed in a few weeks. The breeder of our puppy thinks that it is a huge mistake to have her spayed right now, and that we will be doing damage hormonally to her if we do anything before she is a year. The vet insists it's safe, but the fact that the breeder is so against it has caused me to worry. We want to do right by our girl-- how young is too young?
many will advocate waiting until they've had at least one heat cycle, but there are pros and cons to both waiting and acting early, it all depends on which block of research/opinion you subscribe to.
Ultimately, I'd go with the vet, but be careful, as many breeders will put clauses in their guarantees/contracts, and you don't want to break that.
Baloo - 5 year old black lab
Peanut - 7 year old minpin
Monster - 3-ish year old frenchie/jack, rescue
I would err on the side of the breeder as they know their dogs and their lines and if you went through all the trouble to find a decent breeder, you should listen to them.
It's safe to spay now, and it's safe to spay later. There IS truth that a spayed/nuetered dog done before they go through puberty will look different than their littermate that is allowed to mature naturally and then altered.
I also had questions about spaying ... here is the link:
A lot of different advice, and different perspectives on timing. Riley is scheduled to be spayed this Wednesday, and she just turned 5 months old. I'm going to call her vet to discuss the different opinions and potential problems down the road.
whatever you decide...you must be absolutely careful with her if you let her go through a heat cycle...under lock and key.
I personally have seen NO difference in dogs spayed before their heat cycle or before a male has reached 18 months. My boy was neutered at 6 months and he looks exactly like his dad who is still intact.
Dani, Rider & Rookie
SHR Watson's Safari Rider, JH, WC, CL1-R, RA, CGC, TDI
SHR Endeavor Put Me In Coach, RN, WC, CGC
Member Since 6/2003
I personally HAVE seen lots of differences between littermates spayed/neutered before 1 year and those who were done later. It is a violation of my contract now to de-sex one of my puppies before they reach maturity. There are more and more studies coming out on the health issues of it.
I agree about contacting your breeder. They may or may not care at the age you de-sex. If they don't care, then you have to decide when's the best time based on all the facts.
♣ Laura ♣
Hey there. I dont have tons of experience with DOG spay/neuters, but I am really involved with ferret care, and problems stemming from early spay/neuter are the number one cause of death in ferrets. Because of this, maybe I'm paranoid about my dog(s) because I would ALWAYS wait until after they reached sexual maturity before I spayed/neutered them.
Maybe you could do some research and make a list of the advantages and disadvantages of spaying now vs. waiting until after sexual maturity to spay. It might make coming to a final decision alot easier.
Love,<br />Giuli<br /><br />
Many breeders ask that you wait to desex the dog. Here is a really good article about the effects of early spay/neuter on the performance animal written by a vet who competes in agility.
As I explained to someone and what I tell my puppy people....Would have give an 8 year old girl a hysterectomy and would you castrate a 10 year old boy? Of course not. Then why would you do it to your dog?
This is the latest on the health risks of de-sexing before maturity.
♣ Laura ♣
Labby, what happens to DOGS that are spayed/neutered too young?
I know that with ferrets, early spay or neuter can cause sexual signals to be sent to the adrenaline glands. Because the adrenaline glands are bearing the burden of sexual signals that would be sent to the sex organs (if they were still there), tumors (cancerous or benign) form on the adrenaline glands. These tumors mess up the hormone function of the body and cause things like hairloss, estrogen toxicity, anemia, swollen vulva (in females), enlarged prostate (in males), and eventually death. I dunno why ferrets are so sensitive to early spay/neuter, but 60-80% of ferrets in north america get adrenal disease. Three main factors are believed to play a role in adrenal disease: 1. early spay/neuter 2. unnatural light cycles (which cause the body to think its constantly spring, thus resulting in extra hormone production ie "mate! mate!") and 3. poor genetics.
Adrenal disease is the #1 effect of early spay/neuter in ferrets. What's the #1 effect of early spay/neuter in dogs in your opinion, Labby?
Love,<br />Giuli<br /><br />