Why spaying and neutering is so important
Information courtesy of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) Asia. For more information about welfare problems affecting cats and dogs, and other animal rights issues, please visit PETAAsia.com.
The single most important thing that we can do to save cats and dogs from the suffering and death that their overpopulation causes is to spay and neuter them (in the Philippines, this is often referred to as “kapon” for male animals and “ligation” for females). Spaying and neutering are routine, affordable surgeries that can prevent thousands of animals from being born, only to suffer and struggle to survive on the streets, be abused by cruel or neglectful people, or be euthanized in city pounds for lack of a loving home.
Sterilized animals live longer, happier lives. Spaying eliminates the stress and discomfort that females endure during heat periods, eliminates the risk of uterine cancer, and greatly reduces the risk of mammary cancer. Neutering makes males far less likely to roam or fight, prevents testicular cancer, and reduces the risk of prostate cancer. Altered animals are less likely to contract deadly, contagious diseases, such as feline AIDS and feline leukemia, that are spread through bodily fluids.
Pasay Pups works to reduce the overpopulation of cats and dogs by providing free spay/neuter services to indigent families in the areas we work in. Spaying and neutering these animals reduces the number of abandoned animals, and prevents the births of countless puppies and kittens who would otherwise be thrown in the trash or drowned. It also ensures that impoverished families never have to worry about the burden of feeding litters of puppies or kittens.
Where can I have my animal spayed/neutered?
If you’re interested in having your animal spayed or neutered, please contact your local veterinarian. In some cities, municipal veterinarians offer free or discounted surgeries, so contact the veterinary office of the city hall where you reside to see if there are services in your area. The Philippine Animal Welfare Society, Philippine Pet Birth Control Center, and Compassion and Responsibility for Animals offer low-cost spay/neuter surgeries.
Will my animal’s personality change after spaying or neutering?
Spaying and neutering will only reduce or eliminate the behaviors that you don’t want, such as aggression and urine marking. Neutered males are less likely to roam, fight, or mark their territory with urine, and spayed females experience less hormone-related moodiness. In exchange, your companions will likely become more interested in you (rather than finding a mate) and will still protect your family.
Will spaying and neutering affect my animal’s weight?
No. Cats and dogs become overweight and inactive because their guardians feed them too much and exercise them too little, not because they are sterilized.
Why should I have my male cat or dog neutered?
Male animals contribute to the companion animal overpopulation crisis even more than females do. Just one unsterilized male animal can impregnate dozens of females, creating dozens upon dozens of unwanted offspring. Neutering also eliminates male animals’ risk of testicular cancer and reduces unwanted behaviors such as biting.
Should I let my female animal have one litter before having her spayed?
It’s best to spay animals before they reach sexual maturity in order to reap the full health benefits. Spaying your female companion animal before her first heat cycle means she will have one-seventh the risk of developing mammary cancer. Spaying also eliminates female animals’ risk of diseases and cancers of the ovaries and uterus, which are often life-threatening and require expensive surgery and treatment.
What if I can find homes for all my animal’s puppies or kittens?
Even if you manage to find loving, lifelong homes for all the puppies or kittens, that means that there will be that many fewer homes for puppies and kittens at city pounds and rescue groups who desperately need to be adopted. And unless you ensure that every puppy or kitten you place is spayed or neutered before going to his or her new home, they can go on to produce litter after litter of offspring themselves. Just one female dog and her puppies can result in 67,000 dogs in six years, and one female cat and her kittens can lead to 370,000 cats being born in seven years.
Is sterilization safe?
Spay and neuter surgeries are the most commonly performed animal surgeries. Most animals experience relatively little discomfort (anesthesia is used during surgery, and pain medication is generally given afterward) and are back to their normal activities within a day or two.