The pros and CONS of spaying and neutering

I am not a big fan of spaying and neutering, for several reasons, not the least of which is I think it’s foolish to cut off hormone-producing bodyparts without good reason. (If I have a reason, I’m all for it — just not across the board.)

Vets have a tendency to push spay’neuter to everyone. They quote the statistics that spay/neuter has health benefits — decreases in testicular and mammary cancer — and, of course, it prevents unplanned litters. They don’t, however, spend much time talking about the health problems that spayed’neutered animals are at an increased risk for, and that bugs me. It’s just not right to give part of the story.

That’s PROPOGANDA, folks, not medical advice. (Problem is, I’d be willing to bet a lot of vets don’t KNOW the downsides to spaying and neutering because those aren’t well publicized.)

Anyway, here’s an awesome article that reviews the data from 50+ veterinary studies and comes up with an excellent discussion of the pros and cons of spaying and neutering:

http://www.naiaonline.org/pdfs/LongTermHealthEffectsOfSpayNeuterInDogs.pdf

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5 Responses to The pros and CONS of spaying and neutering

  1. Ashley Hedge says:

    I’m shocked that they haven’t even taught us the cons in Vet school. Thank you so much, this has been an eye opener.

  2. Alyssa says:

    Prevention of unplanned litters is a far greater pro than any insignificant con that may be caused, of which there are few I might add. Millions of animals are dying in shelters due to the overpopulation of companion animals. Spaying and neutering is the answer to this problem given the fact that most unwanted animals are the result of accidental breeding. The pros outweigh the cons. Period.

    • Melissa says:

      You’re certainly welcome to your opinion. 🙂 Your argument presumes that all pet owners are created equally — that all are irresponsible enough to have unplanned litters, and therefore should automatically neuter their pets, even if it means expensive health problems and a shorter life for them. I disagree with that. If someone is incapable of preventing their dog from breeding (or from being bred), I think that’s an excellent reason to neuter. Not everyone is. In fact, a surprising number of people are able to have dogs that don’t breed willy-nilly.

      Regardless, there’s the choice to have dogs sterilized without removing the hormone-producing organs. If people aren’t educated about the potential long-term health problem associated with neutering, they may not consider alternatives. If I owned a breed that was, for example, extremely likely to die from bone cancer, like Goldens, there’s no way I would remove the hormone-producing organs.

  3. Melanie says:

    I don’t think the idea here is to persuade one way or the other. It’s not about what your or my opinion on the matter is. It’s about pointing out the facts. That’s all.

    I, for one, appreciate the knowledge, whether I choose to sterilize or not.

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