A lot of pet owners choose to spay or neuter their dogs, and they do so for good reasons. These procedures can help reduce the risk of certain cancers as well as have positive impact on their pets behavior. If you own a Dalmatian then you probably already have at the very least thought about it, if not considered it.
Well before you get your Dalmatian spayed or neutered, you need to do some research. Although there are a lot of good reasons to do it, there are some downsides/risks that go along with it. Despite all the beneficial claims, there are plenty of reasons to not go through with it.
To help you decide, we are going to go through both the good and the bad of neutering/spaying your Dalmatian. Hopefully this article will clear things up a bit, if not at least it will give you something to talk about with your dogs vet on your next checkup.
The first question you need to ask yourself is:
Is My Dalmatian Old Enough To Be Neutered/Spayed?
You can have your Dalmatian neutered/spayed as early as two months, but it’s not a good idea to do it that early. Performing the procedure that early can lead to complications and most veterinarians will advice against it.
You should really wait until your Dal reaches puberty – somewhere between 6-8 months. That’s the recommended age by most vets. At that age the risk of possible complications is greatly reduced.
Personally I wouldn’t recommend to do it until the dog is at least a year old, preferably even two. Larger dog breeds, like Dalmatians, usually don’t reach their full adult size until they are at least a year old. Since most of the problems with neutering/spaying lies in the fact that the dog isn’t done growing – the best way to avoid those problems is to wait until the Dal is fully grown.
What About Older Dalmatians?
If your dog has already passed that age, don’t worry. Older Dalmatians shouldn’t have a problem undergoing the surgery. The only part of the procedure that might hold them back is going under anesthetics – especially if your dog had other surgeries or medical complications in the past.
Benefits of Neutering/Spaying
Neutering your Dalmatian can bring some positive benefits to your pet’s behavior and health. Here are some benefits of neutering your dog:
- Spaying female dogs reduces the risk of breast cancer – Studies have shown that female dogs that have been spayed have much less chance of developing breast cancer.
- Neutering male dogs prevents testicular cancer – There is no chance that the dog will develop testicular cancer after the surgery.
- Neutering a male dog can reduce dominant behavior –This includes territorial marking, aggression, humping and the need to leave the house in search of a female.
- Neutered dogs tend to fight less among each other – So if you have multiple dogs at home, having them neutered could help them get along with each other better.
- Males that have been neutered are less likely to have enlarged prostate glands – It’s actually a recommended procedure for older male dogs that have enlarged prostate glands.
Besides those benefits, you will also play your part in helping reduce the amount of homeless animals. Currently there are estimated 6 – 8 million homelessness animals entering shelters each year and the biggest cause for it is overpopulation. Check out the this Humane Society Article to learn more.
Negative Effects of Neutering/Spaying
- Putting an old dog under anesthetics could be harmful – Your vet will examine the Dalmatian before he puts him under anesthesia to make sure he can handle it beforehand.
- Dalmatian might become slightly more possessive – Although there are conflicting studies to this, some owners have noticed that their dogs get a little more possessive (dominant behavior, jealous) after being neutered.
- Chances of the dog gaining more weight can increase – Dalmatians that have been neutered tend to put on weight more easily so exercise and activity becomes that much more important.
- Possible decrease in muscle mass – This applies both to males and females.
- Neutering before the dalmatian reaches maturity can lead to abnormal growth – Neutering can have a big impact the way their bodies regular their hormones.
Should I Spay/Neuter My Dalmatian?
As a dog owner, you will have to ask yourself this question at some point. There are pros and cons to both sides here and there is no right or wrong answer. Going through with the operation will have a permanent impact on your dog so give yourself some time to think about it. And if you do decide to go through with it, make sure you wait until your Dalmatian has fully grown.
Continue Reading: Common Dalmatian Health Problems