Dog - Neutering

Should I have my dog neutered?

Neutering removes the sexual urge from both dogs and bitches. Carried out surgically it is irreversible. Temporary or semi-permanent control can be affected by the use of certain drugs.

What are the advantages and disadvantages?

If you do not intend to breed from your dog neutering has undoubted advantages both in the male and the female. In the male dog it removes the sexual urge so that if the dog gets the scent of a bitch in oestrus (heat) he is unlikely to show interest. This in certain breeds can be an undoubted advantage. Neutering the bitch prevents oestrus and breeding. Not coming into heat means that she will not have to be kept apart from male dogs for approximately three weeks every six months and prevents the mess associated with some bitches seasons.

Is it not true that having a litter improves the bitch’s temperament?

There appears to be a general misconception that having a litter will improve temperament. There is no scientific evidence to support this theory whereas it has been proven that neutering in the bitch not only obviously prevents subsequent and not uncommon diseases of the uterus but also reduces the possibility of breast cancer.

Once neutered the bitch will not come into heat, have unwanted puppies or phantom pregnancies which in some bitches can cause problems.


It is a common misconception that a neutered dog will become fat and lazy. Remember that all service animals, e.g. Guide Dogs, Hearing Dogs and Dogs for the Disabled are routinely neutered. Careful feeding of a scientifically prepared, complete diet without too many ‘treats’ should adequately control any problems of obesity, just as it does in the entire animal.

spaying_doguterus_72Another common belief is that the neutered dog loses character. Admittedly neutering is often carried out, both in dogs and bitches, for certain behavioural abnormalities. Often dogs will become more gentle but they lose neither their spirit nor their intelligence and provided they are not allowed to become obese are just as active as the entire counterpart.

Thus there are many advantages and few disadvantages to having your dog neutered.

Both dogs and bitches are usually neutered between 6-12 months of age although the operation can be carried out at any time. We will be more than happy to discuss details with you.

Used and/or modified with permission under license. ©Lifelearn, The Penguin House, Castle Riggs, Dunfermline FY11 8SG

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