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Neutering

Our recommendations for neutering

Bitch Neutering

What is neutering?

Neutering the bitch is a surgical procedure under general anaesthetic during which the womb and the ovaries are removed. It is commonly known as spaying.

What are the benefits?

Spaying will:

  • Eliminate the risk of unwanted pregnancy.
  • Prevent the distress of false pregnancy.
  • Eliminate the risk of ovarian cysts and tumours and cancer of the womb.
  • Eliminate the risk of pyometra, a fatal womb infection which can occur in later life.
  • Reduce the risk of mammary tumours, if carried out before the second heat.
  • Eliminate the inconvenience of the Heat (Season) every six months.

What are the disadvantages?

  • It will be easier to make your dog fat by overfeeding. Spayed bitches need less food and should be fed about one third less. This should be adjusted according to results. (Too thin? Feed a bit more. Too fat? Cut down her daily intake.)
  • A small proportion of spayed bitches may develop urinary incontinence (bed wetting) in later life. In most cases this can be treated successfully with medical treatment.
  • In some breeds the coat texture may alter.

What is life like for an unspayed bitch?

Bitches come on Heat (Into Season) for the first time typically between 8 and 12 months of age. The Heat lasts about 21 days. During this time there is a variable bloody vaginal discharge and she may be under the weather and her temperament may change. Natural instinct is powerful and your bitch is at risk of becoming pregnant given any opportunity. Bitches come on heat about every six months until well into old age. The heat combined with the hormonal changes of false pregnancy mean that your bitch may not be her usual self for three months, twice a year.

What is false pregnancy?

All bitches who are not mated undergo hormonal changes after each heat. This is known as ‘false pregnancy’ and typically between 6 and 12 weeks after the heat. Many bitches show signs of ‘pregnancy’ and maternal behaviour. Some will produce milk, nurse toys and make nests out of bedding. Bitches can stop eating, show panting and restlessness and be quite distressed.

What are the risks?

Spaying is major surgery. The main risks are giving an anaesthetic, bleeding after surgery, wound infection and wound breakdown. These problems are not common. We will take great care of your bitch. However, deaths from the procedure and the potential complications, though very rare, cannot be ruled out.

Will my dog's personality be affected by spaying?

Your dog's personality will not be worse. In general, she will be a better and more reliable companion.

Isn't spaying unnatural?

Yes, but so is the modern life in which we expect our dogs to live. The health benefits to your dog outweigh the risks.

Is it best for my dog to have a litter?

No! There's no benefit to her. It's just an urban myth.

Male Dog Neutering

What is neutering?

Neutering the male dog is a surgical procedure under general anaesthetic during which the testicles are removed. It is commonly known as castration.

What are the benefits?

In general, castration will:

  • Make your dog more manageable and easier to train.
  • Reduce your dog's sex drive. Neutered males are less randy and less likely to roam.
  • Eliminate the risk of cancer of the testicles in later life.
  • Reduce the risk of some anal cancers.
  • Reduce the risk of prostate problems.
  • Reduce the risk of perineal hernia.
  • Reduce the stress of being an unneutered male in our modern world.

What are the disadvantages?

  • It will be easier to make your dog fat by overfeeding. Neutered males need less food and should be fed about one third less. This should be adjusted according to results. (Too thin? Feed a bit more. Too fat? Cut down his daily intake).

What are the risks?

Castration is not minor surgery. Your dog will have a full general anaesthetic. The main risks are giving a general anaesthetic, bleeding after surgery and wound infection. These problems are occasional. Deaths from the procedure and the potential complications are rare.

Will my dog's personality be affected?

Your dog's personality will not be worse. In general, he will be a better and more reliable companion.

What happens on the day?

Your dog is admitted to the clinic between 8 and 10 on the morning of the operation. Please remember, water only after 7pm the night before.

Shortly after admission, he is given a pre-med (which calms him) and a drug for pain. Then he is given a general anaesthetic by injection. A tube is put in his airway and he breathes oxygen and anaesthetic gas from the anaesthetic machine until his operation is over. After the surgery your dog is monitored to check for a normal recovery and to watch for complications.  

Neutering procedures are discounted within our Pet Health Club. Click here to see how much you could save!

Practice information

Beech House Vet Clinic

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  • Mon
    8:15am - 7:00pm
  • Tue
    8:15am - 7:00pm
  • Wed
    8:15am - 7:00pm
  • Thu
    8:15am - 7:00pm
  • Fri
    8:15am - 7:00pm
  • Sat
    8:15am - 12:00pm
  • Sun
    Closed

Emergency Details

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01273 621682
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35 Harrington Road Brighton BN1 6RF
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Please call this number for emergencies:

01273 621682