Centretown Veterinary Hospital

[Centretown Veterinary Hospital]

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Spaying and Neutering Dogs

Neutering (Orchiectomy)

What is neutering?

Neutering is one of the most common operations performed by veterinarians. It involves the removal of the testicles from within the scotal sac.

Why neuter?

When male dogs mature at about 7 months they adopt many habits that in the wild would be good at making puppies but which aren’t desirable in a family pet.

These include: a propensity to want to get out of the house and wander in order to meet girl dogs, sometimes an increase in aggression both towards other dogs while maintaining their territory or position and from other dogs because they smell and act different.

The benefits of neutering also extend latter into life and include the following:

  • Less chance of future prostatic enlargement and prostates
  • Less chance of diseases such as perianal adenoma and other hormone related diseases
  • Totally eliminates the chance of testicular cancer
About the surgery

As with all surgeries at Centertown Vet, your pet will be thoroughly examined to assess that they are healthy enough to undergo the surgery. They may require pre-anesthetic blood work depending on their lifestyle.

During the surgery the patient is rendered unconscious with anaesthesia. They are given pre-operative pain medication to decrease any pain during the surgery.

The hair just in front of the scrotum is shaved and the skin is made aseptic as this is where the incision will be made. This incision varies in length proportional to the size of the testes. The testes are tied off and removed. And the skin is closed with special sutures that remain beneath the skin and will be absorbed by the body.

The entire surgery usually lasts 10 to 15 minutes and most commonly your dog can go home that same day. Complications are very uncommon, and the recovery is usually uncomplicated and fast. Your guy should be back to his normal self within a day or two.

Spaying (Ovariohysterectomy)

Spaying a female dog involves the removal of almost the entire reproductive tract including the ovaries and the uterus (ovario (ovaries) hyster (uterus) ectomy (removal)). A dog spay is a major abdominal surgery, hopefully the most major your dog will ever need. Although a major surgery, it is one of the surgeries veterinarians perform most often and at which veterinarians are the most proficient.

Why Spay?

When a female dog becomes mature at around 7 months she comes into “heat”. This heat lasts for three weeks in duration and recurs every 6 months. When she is in heat she will develop a vaginal discharge and she will be attractive to male dogs and she will be fertile for up to a week before the onset of the discharge. After she is in heat she may start to act like she is pregnant and make “nests” out of blankets and start collecting toys (Dr. Black’s dog liked My Little Ponys the best), and will treat these toys as if they were puppies. She may be come overly protective of these at this time. This is called a “false pregnancy”.

Besides stopping these unwanted behavioural changes, spaying your dog has a number of really important health benefits including

  • Eliminating the high risk of uterine infection (pyometera) a common, severe and often fatal condition in intact female dogs
  • Significantly decreasing the chance of Cancer in the reproductive tract
  • Significantly decreasing the risk of Breast Cancer
About the Surgery?

As with all surgeries, your dog is thoroughly examined to determine that she is healthy and that she is a good candidate for surgery at this time. Depending on the pet, pre-anesthetic blood work may or may not be required prior to surgery. Your veterinarian would be happy to discuss this with you at any time.

Your dog is brought in by you in the morning having not eaten since 8pm the night before. This is to avoid any anesthetic complications. She then receives preoperative pain medication and is placed under general anaesthesia. She is kept on a warming blanket during surgery and her hair is shaved and the skin aseptically prepared.

An incision is made from her belly button to the middle of her abdomen just in between her hips. The doctor carefully removes both ovaries and the uterus, tying off all blood vessels using absorbable suture material. The body wall is then closed using absorbable suture and the skin is closed with a special pattern where the absorbable suture creates stitches which are not visible under the skin. No skin stitches need to be removed.

This is a major abdominal procedure and can take from 20 minutes to upwards of 40 minutes depending on a variety of factors including your dog’s size, her weight, her age and how deep her chest is. A surgical scar is visible once the body has completely healed. Your dog can go home with you that night however she must remain very calm. She will be going home with pain management to continue that she received before during and after at our hospital. With calm rest and limited movement the body heals quickly and the recovery is usually uneventful.