Because of unintended pregnancies, millions of dogs and cats go homeless every year in our country. According to the Humane Society of the United States, between 6- 8 million pets enter U.S. animal shelters every year. Only about half are adopted, meaning the rest—mostly healthy, adoptable dogs and cats—are euthanized.
You can help lower this sad statistic by preventing unwanted litters from your pets. And there’s more good news—there are health benefits when you have your pet spayed or neutered.
So when you should have your pet altered? Most female cats will go into heat by six months of age, so it’s a good idea to spay them at around five months. Female dogs also reach puberty at about six months of age, but this can vary by breed. Smaller breeds tend to go into heat at an earlier age, while large and giant breeds may not come into heat for the first time until they reach 18 months to 2 years of age.
Spaying your female puppy or kitten before her first heat offers the best protection from uterine infections and breast tumors. Neutering yourmale pet at approximately six months helps prevent testicular cancer and certain prostate problems.
Rabbits of both sexes of rabbits should be altered because they are susceptible to reproductive tumors. If healthy, both sexes can be neutered at 5-6 months of age. Guinea pigs don’t need to be routinely spayed or neutered unless there is an underlying reason—the most obvious being to prevent pregnancy.
Do you have other types of exotics? We can advise you about proper care, feeding and maintenance of your pet, as well as reproductive information specific to their species. It’s important you have a veterinarian experienced in their care to help. Call us at (802) 985-2525 if you have questions or to make an appointment for your pet.