For some reason or another, the topic of fixing a dog has become a rather touchy subject. While we all think of our pets as our kids, there are some differences that needed to be considered. For example, you are not going to give your fur-kid a chocolate cake for their birthday or teach them to drive your car. Nor are you going to put flea treatment on your human child or expect them to stay in a crate at night.
The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Los Angeles has been around since 1877 and they have heard just about every reason under the sun for not fixing your dog. Here are their top 10 worst reasons to NOT spay or neuter, and the reason why.
1. I want my child to experience the miracle of life. Animal shelters are brimming with unwanted and abused animals; willfully making more is not a wise choice. Rather than allowing the family pet to become pregnant solely to demonstrate the birthing process, use a video or other educational tool.
2. Pet will gain weight. Pet obesity is a growing problem, but an unneutered/unspayed pet is not the solution. Work with your vet to make sure your pet is a healthy weight and provide daily exercise.
3. Neutering will take away his “manhood.” Your pet doesn’t understand the concept of manhood, thus he won’t feel emasculated. That is a human trait. Unaltered pets often stray to find a mate. If your pet is not microchipped or wearing an ID Tag with collar, a reunion can be extremely difficult. About 80% of all pets hit by cars are unneutered males.
4. Pet’s personality will change. Most often, there is no change whatsoever after a pet is spayed/neutered. If a pet changes, it’s usually for the better. Spay/Neuter can make a pet more calm and reduce unwanted behaviors like marking or trying to escape.
5. Pet will resent me. Your pet won’t resent you. Pets offer love and companionship. They don’t judge or resent. That is a human quality.
6. It is unnatural to spay or neuter. Humans domesticated cats and dogs long ago, and now it is our responsibility to care for them. With the current unwanted pet overpopulation, it is irresponsible to not spay and neuter your pets.
7. Eric Cartman defense: Don’t tell me what to do! The simple fix for this is education. 14 million pets end up in shelters; only 1 in 4 are adopted.
8. I want to breed my pet. About one of every 4 shelter pets is a purebred, many the result of backyard breeding. There is no guarantee that the puppies you breed will find homes and if they do, that’s one less home for a pet waiting for adoption. Don’t add to the population of unwanted animals.
9. Animal is too young/females must have one litter. These is a common misconception and patently untrue. Most pets can be spayed or neutered as young as 2 months old. Spaying before the first heat cycle dramatically reduces cancer in the reproductive organs and mammary tissue.
10. Can’t afford it. You can’t afford not to! There are many resources including reduced or even free spay neuter options available. Call your local SPCA or humane society for a list of resources.
About the Author
Based in Tustin, Calif., animal lover Kristina N. Lotz is a Certified Professional Dog Trainer – Knowledge Assessed (CPDT-KA) and works as a full time trainer. She also owns her own custom pet products company, A Fairytail House, where she makes personalized collars, leashes, beds, keepsake pillows and blankets, and anything else your imagine can think up. In her spare time, she trains and competes in herding, agility, obedience, rally, and conformation with her Shetland Sheepdogs.