According to DoSomething.org, which is a social platform that connects people to causes around the United States, there are 2.7 million adoptable cats and dogs euthanized in the U.S. every year for the sole reason that they do not have a home. The reason for this? People don’t get their pets spayed or neutered, resulting in unexpected and unwanted litters of puppies and kittens that they aren’t prepared to take care of. And, why don’t people get their pets spayed or neutered? It’s because there are many myths and misconceptions out there about spaying and neutering that lead pet owners down the wrong path. However, our animal hospital in Carroll Gardens is here to set the record straight. So, without further ado, here is our list of the most common myths about spaying and neutering debunked:
For people, being a parent is one of the most rewarding aspects of life, if not the most, and they don’t want their dog or cat to miss out on that same opportunity. However, there’s absolutely no scientific evidence to suggest that our pets experience parenthood anything like the way we do. But, there is scientific evidence that suggests that not getting your pet spayed or neutered can increase their risk for developing a number of health conditions, including certain types of cancer, so it’s not worth the risk.
Before making the decision to adopt a pet, it’s imperative that you consider all of the costs associated with it. Giving a pet a healthy, happy life is not exactly cheap. In fact, when you consider the vaccinations, heartworm medication, veterinary evaluations and potential emergency veterinary care, it can be downright pricey. Spaying and neutering is something that should be considered a non-negotiable expense, but when you compare it to the expense of raising puppies or kittens, or treating one of the many conditions that are common in pets that are still intact, it’s minimal.
If you keep your pet inside all of the time, there’s a good chance that they aren’t getting the kind of exercise or socialization they need in order to be health and happy. Additionally, preventing unwanted puppies and kittens isn’t the only reason to get your pet spayed or neutered. As we mentioned in our first point, if you skip spaying or neutering your pet, it puts them at a higher risk for developing a number of health conditions, including different types of cancer. Plus, spaying or neutering your pet will help to reduce unwanted and destructive behaviors, like marking.
There are some behaviors that are unique — or much more severe — in pets that have not been spayed or neutered. Cats who have not been spayed or neutered, for instance, will often roam outdoors more often, which puts them at a higher risk for getting run over, and for getting into fights with other cats more often, which puts them at risk for disease or injury. Male cats who are still intact also tend to mark inside in the house because they are more territorial. When male dogs are still intact, it can lead to increased aggression, dominance and marking in the house, and if an intact male is in the vicinity of a female in heat, they will do everything in their power to escape to get to the female. Spaying or neutering your pet can help to curb these unwanted behaviors, but it won’t change your pet’s personality. And, it’s important to note that behavior and personality, while often used interchangeably, are not the same thing.
Many people feel like neutering or even spaying an animal means that you’re forcing them to give up their sexual identity, but it’s an important to realize that cats and dogs don’t have sexual identities the same way that people do. It’s counterproductive to assign human emotions to our pets, as much as we might want to. And, yes, your neutered male pet may not feel the need to fight or roam as much as they once did, but it does not mean that they are emasculated in any way. Neutering a male cat or dog doesn’t make them less male; it just makes them less likely to produce kittens or puppies, or to develop testicular cancer.
As you can see, when it comes to spaying and neutering pets, there are many different myths out there, and in our next blog, we’ll be going over a few more. Make sure that you stay tuned for our next blog if you would like to learn the truth about more common myths.
Don’t put off this incredibly important procedure. Instead, turn to the professionals at The Vet Set. We’re proud to be your go-to animal hospital in Carroll Gardens, and we’ll take care of your pet as if they were our own. We also have a brand new, state-of-the-art animal hospital in Carroll Gardens! Contact, visit us online or use our app to schedule your appointment today! And, as always, if you have questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to contact us!