Desexing or neutering refers to the surgical procedure to remove the reproductive organs of either a male (castration) or female (spey/ovariohysterectomy) animal. We recommend desexing your pet between 5-6 months, however they are never too old to be desexed.
There are many benefits to desexing your pet:
- Prevent unwanted litters. These can be very costly, and may add to the already overwhelming number of stray animals that are euthanised each year
- Prevent testicular cancer and prostate disease in males
- Prevent pyometra (uterine infection) and mammary tumours (breast cancer) in females
- Stopping the heat cycle in females
- Decrease aggression towards humans and other animals, especially in males
- Decrease risk of escaping and roaming, especially in males
- Prevent urine spraying, especially in male cats
- Living a longer and healthier life
- Reduction of council registration fees
- Will desexing affect my pet’s personality?
- Your pet will keep their pre-operative personality, possibly with the added bonus of being calmer and less aggressive!
- Should my female have one litter first?
- No. It is actually better for her not to have any litters before desexing. Her risk of developing breast cancer increases dramatically with each season/heat she has.
- Will it cause my pet to become fat?
- Your pet’s metabolism will be slower due to hormonal changes after desexing, however this is easily managed with adjusted feeding and adequate exercise. There is no reason a desexed pet cannot be maintained at a normal weight.
- Is desexing painful?
- As with any surgery, there is some tenderness immediately after the procedure, but most pets will recover very quickly. We administer pain relief prior to surgery and after surgery too. Your pet will be discharged with a short course of pain relief medication to take home. In many cases, your pet will likely need some encouragement to take it easy!
- Will my dog lose it’s guard dog instinct?
- No. Your dog will be just as protective of its territory as it was prior to surgery.
What is involved in desexing my pet at Swanbourne Veterinary Centre?
- Make a booking for your pet’s surgery
- Wash your dog the day before surgery as they are unable to be washed until stitches are removed
- Do not give your pet food after 9pm the night before the surgery (water is okay)
- A blood test may be performed prior to surgery to check vital organ function
- The vet will perform a thorough physical examination before administering an anaesthetic
- Most pets will receive intravenous fluid support during surgery
- All pets receive pain relief prior to desexing and to take home for several days after the procedure
- Your pet may need to wear an Elizabethan collar/Cone to prevent licking or chewing at the wound
- Keep your pet quiet and safe as the effects of anaesthetic can take some time to wear off
- Food and water should be limited to small portions on the night after surgery
- Ensure all post-surgical medications (if any) are administered as per the label instructions
- Ensure your pet’s rest area is clean to avoid infection
- You will need to keep your pet quiet while the stitches are in place to allow the wound to heal
- Check the incision at least twice daily for any issues (e.g. bleeding, swelling, redness or discharge). Contact the vet immediately if these symptoms appear. Do not wait to see if they will spontaneously resolve.
- Prevent your pet from licking or chewing the wound. Elizabethan collars/Cones assist with this. A single chew can remove the stitches with disastrous effects!
- Ensure you return to us on time for routine postoperative checks and removal of stitches
If you have any concerns before or after your pet has been desexed, or alternatively to book your pet’s surgery, please call us on (08) 9384 2644.