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Should I Spay My Golden Retriever

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Effects Of Spay & Neuter

  • Hart, BL, LA Hart, AP Thigpen, & NH Willits 2014 Long-term health effects of neutering dogs: comparison of Labrador Retrievers with Golden Retrievers. PLoS ONE 9.

  • NOTE: When this was originally posted, the summary below was inadvertently omitted.
  • NOTE: The tables containing the data used for the graphs are appended at the bottom.

* Asterisk above a bar indicates a statistically significant difference from the intact level.Orthopedic Disorders

Neutering Health Effects More Severe For Golden Retrievers Than Labradors

Labrador retrievers are less vulnerable than golden retrievers to the long-term health effects of neutering, as evidenced by higher rates of certain joint disorders and devastating cancers, according to a new study by researchers at the University of California, Davis, School of Veterinary Medicine.

Results of the study now appear online in the open-access journal PLOS ONE.

We found in both breeds that neutering before the age of 6 months, which is common practice in the United States, significantly increased the occurrence of joint disorders especially in the golden retrievers, said lead investigator Benjamin Hart, a distinguished professor emeritus in the School of Veterinary Medicine.

The data, however, showed that the incidence rates of both joint disorders and cancers at various neuter ages were much more pronounced in golden retrievers than in the Labrador retrievers, he said.

He noted that the findings not only offer insights for researchers in both human and veterinary medicine, but are also important for breeders and dog owners contemplating when, and if, to neuter their dogs. Dog owners in the United States are overwhelmingly choosing to neuter their dogs, in large part to prevent pet overpopulation or avoid unwanted behaviors.

Health records of goldens and Labradors examined

Neutering and joint disorders

Neutering and cancers

Neutering in female Labradors increased the cancer incidence rate only slightly.

It Is Important To Note That Neutering And Spaying Effects Bone Growth And Cancer Rates

Neutering prior to your dogs growth plates closing can cause complications that result in hip and elbow dysplasia. Growth plates begin to close around 6 months of age. Dogs neutered before 6 months of age have a 4 to 5 times chance of developing a form of dysplasia. As for cancer, any dog who is neutered or spayed has a higher chance of cancer compared to a dog that is intact. The affects of neutering males and cancer rates are not as evident as compared to females. With spayed females there is a 3 to 4 times increase of chance in developing some form of cancer.

For me though, reading the results isnt just enough. When I looked at their charts, it showed that if a female is spayed prior to 6 months, she has a less increase of cancer rates compared to 6-12 months. It isnt until 2 years of age, that the chance of cancer rates drops again nearing intact levels. However, if a female is spayed before 6 months then we know she will likely develop a form of dysplasia. We have to consider which one is worse, and quality of life is then important to consider.

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Orthopedic Issues From Spaying

Studies, such as those reported by the Purina Pro Club, show that pets that are spayed earlier tend to be taller pets.

The lack of sex hormones means that the growth plates in their bones take longer to close, generally making them taller. Your dogs body proportions can then be altered, which can increase the risk for joint issues.

Common joint problems that arise in Golden Retrievers as a result of spaying too early include hip dysplasia and elbow dysplasia. These problems can lead to dogs developing arthritis, especially at a younger age.

Unfortunately, when a dog of any breed tears his or her ACL in one leg, they tend to be at a higher risk of tearing the ACL in their other leg, which results in an expensive and painful problem.

Best Age To Neuter A Golden Retriever

When should I spay or neuter my English Golden puppy?

Neutering a pet is a common practice that offers a number of benefits to the animals and owners alike. Most golden retriever owners get their pets neutered or spayed to avoid unwanted breeding. Others get it done to avoid health issues.

A study in 2016 found that 61% Golden retrievers die from cancer. Neutering can be a solution to this in some cases. In this article we will talk about the best age to neuter a Golden Retriever.

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Golden Retriever Behavior After Spay

After your Golden Retriever is spayed, she will need to be allowed to rest for 5-7 days. Even if she feels perky the day after the surgery, you should still try to keep her calm as her incisions heal. Your veterinarian will let you know how and when to give her pain medication and if she needs to go back into the clinic to have any stitches removed.

Otherwise, her behavior should remain just as it was prior to her surgery. Spaying your Golden will not change her personality or behavior in any meaningful way. She should be exactly the same pup she was before.

If she had heat cycles prior to her spay, she will not have them anymore. So, you will not notice any more of the behavior changes, such as irritability or seeking out male dogs, that she may have had during a heat cycle.

When Should You Spay Your Female Golden Retriever

If you have a pet Golden Retriever and you are not intending to breed from her, should you have her spayed?

If yes, when is the best age to do this?

In this post I look at the pros and cons of spaying your bitch and when the right time is.

There doesnt seem to be a set in stone answer for this.

Read on to find out the theories behind all of your potential options.

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For Male Golden Retrievers

The ideal age to get your male golden neutered is around one year just after sexual maturity. This helps your pup grow properly. It also reduces the risk of early onset of orthopedic problems in your retriever.

Some veterinary doctors suggest waiting up to two years before the process. Neutering your dog after two years of age will not have much of a difference on their behavior. So if that is not your main point of concern, you can wait for that long.

During this time it is important that you make sure there are no involuntary breeding mishaps.

For male retrievers, we suggest that they are neutered by 12 -14 months maximum.

When To Neuter A Male English Golden Retriever

When Should I Start Training My GOLDEN RETRIEVER PUPPY?

I am personally much more unsure and therefore flexible about when to neuter a male. Ive read that it is good to neuter them around the same time as a female to keep them from becoming dominant. Ive also read that you should wait until they mature fully or they will have behavior or health problems after neutering them. Because of this extreme controversy, I really dont have a strong opinion either way.

If it were me, I would probably neuter him somewhere in the middle around 1 1 1/2 years of age. The main danger in waiting until your male is fully grown to neuter him is that he may be prone to find a soul mate. Whenever a female goes into heat here, our wonderful, sweet, obedient and loving boys becomeobsessed and even seemingly possessed. They are not themselves. They will do whatever they can do to get to the female, even if that means breaking out of their enclosure.

If there is an intact female anywhere near where you live and she goes into full estrus, then beware because your male will do whatever he can to get to her. That could obviously be very dangerous, because he could get run over, stolen or produce a litter of pups.

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Ideal Age To Neuter A Male Golden Retriever

Knowing exactly when to neuter your male Goldens is challenging, as different sources will tell you different things. In the past, the general rule was to get them fixed before they were six months old. However, this recommendation has changed as new research has come to light.

According to Dr. Benjamin L. Hart, a professor in the School of Veterinary Medicine at UC Davis, it is best to wait till after male Goldens retrievers are one year old to neuter them. This will give them time to develop. If you neuter them before this point, it may harm their joint development !

When Should You Neuter A Golden Retriever

As previously mentioned, people tend to get their Golden Retriever neutered at around the time they become 12 months old.

But how do owners decide when to neuter their Golden Retriever? When do you know whether your Golden Retriever is mature enough to be neutered, and when is it too late to neuter them?

Well, when it comes to female Golden Retrievers, most vets will advise that you dont spay them too early. Instead, they will tell you to wait until a female Golden Retriever has had at least one heat before you spay them.

Whereas when you have a male Golden Retriever, the advice tends to be to wait until around one year after they become sexually mature, to help them to grow in a healthy way and to prevent early-onset orthopedic problems.

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The Right Time To Spay Your Pet

Your veterinarian will help you determine the best time to spay or neuter your pet.

In most cases, anywhere between six to nine months is considered the ideal age. However, it is important to note that adult dogs can be neutered as well but, the chances of them developing postoperative complications increases with age.

This is especially true for overweight dogs or those with health issues.

At What Age Should Golden Retrievers Be Fixed

When should I spay or neuter my English Golden puppy?

Traditional advice has always been that dogs should be spayed or neutered before six months of age to diminish the chances of them developing uterine infections. But research now suggests that for at least some dog breeds, fixing operations should be delayed because doing it too soon can cause other health issues.

Golden retrievers is one of the breeds that certainly should not be fixed before six months of age, and it is recommended to wait until they are at least a year old.

Many vets are now also recommending not to spay female golden retrievers at all, unless it is absolutely necessary.

Lets take a closer look at the risks if you fix your golden too soon.

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Cons Of Spaying And Neutering

One of the most common side effects after spaying and neutering is weight gain. Your dogs metabolism will slow down after they are spayed or neutered. So it is very important for you to provide your dog with regular exercise and the proper portion of food. Your veterinarian can help you determine how much dog food your pup should eat on a daily basis after they are spayed or neutered.

If you follow the instructions on a typical bag of dog food, you will likely be feeding your dog too much. The instructions are intended for non-fixed dogs that get lots of exercise. This is why it is important for you to consult with your dogs veterinarian regarding how much food you should feed your individual dog based off of their lifestyle.

More studies are currently underway to further understand if there are any other cons to spaying and neutering at the correct time. Right now, there really arent, and there are more benefits than drawbacks. But, again, this really depends on you and your dog. Talking with your vet is the best way to decide what is best for your particular Golden Retriever.

Spaying Your Golden Retriever

When your vet spays your dog, they are performing a procedure known as an ovariohysterectomy.

The ovaries are surgically removed, and the vet generally also removes the uterus to prevent infections from developing in this tissue later in life.

An ovariohysterectomy can be performed at just about any time in your dogs life, with most vets electing to spay dogs before their first heat cycle.

Young dogs tend to bounce back from the surgery faster than older dogs, which is a point for spaying them earlier. Their tissues heal faster, but it may be more difficult to contain your Golden Retrievers boundless energy.

Regardless of when your pet is spayed, she will need a couple weeks of exercise restriction and wearing an Elizabethan collar, also known as an e-collar.

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Why Should I Spay Or Neuter My Golden Retriever

Spaying and neutering is widely considered the responsible thing to do to prevent unwanted litters, to prevent these puppies from ending up in shelters, rescues, up for adoption or worse.

The decision is often taken to take control of this problem, it can also be taken because it stops males from roaming, it can increase harmony in multi-dog households, and for other medical reasons.

Do You Have To Neuter Your Golden Retriever

GOLDEN RETRIEVER! 5 Reasons you SHOULD NOT GET A Golden Retriever Puppy!

Why wouldnt you neuter your Golden Retriever? It has all sorts of great health benefits, and it can make a dog more gentle and obedient.

But the procedure can be expensive, and there is a small risk of complications from it. What would be so bad about just foregoing the whole thing?

But if you have an intact female Golden Retriever, it is very difficult to keep her secure and calm when she is on heat. She will have a much better quality of life if she is spayed.

As well as this, unless you are intending to breed your Golden Retriever and you have a breeding license, there are actually various laws requiring that you must neuter or spay Golden Retrievers or face a fine, though these laws have very limited enforcement.

One example of this is the pet sterilization law Los Angeles County set up in 2008, widely regarded as the strictest pet sterilization law around. Los Angeles dictates that the average pet owner must have

their Golden Retriever neutered or spayed by the time they have reached the age of 4 months. If it is discovered that you have not complied with this law, you will be given 60 days to get your Golden Retriever neutered. Information about reputable places where you can get this carried out will be provided. If you still dont get your Labrador Retriever neutered, you could be fined $100 dollars, as well as being ordered to serve 8 hours of community service.

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Pros And Cons Of Spaying And Neutering

Just like most things in life, there are both pros and cons to spaying and neutering. Generally speaking, there are definitely more pros to spaying and neutering than cons. That being said, each dog and pet owner has their own needs and priorities.

When deciding whether or not to spay or neuter your Golden, work closely with your veterinarian and discuss all of your concerns. Together you can come to a decision on what is best for you and your individual pup.

The most obvious point about Spaying and Neutering is that your dog will not be having puppies. Now this can be listed on both the Pro and Con list depending on your plans for the futureso we left it off the list.

For Female Golden Retrievers

For females, their sexual hormones play an important role in their growth. It is ideal that you wait out at least one heat cycle before you get their reproductive system removed. Again it is important that you keep them on a tight leash and not let them leave the house.

The ideal age for neutering is around 8-10 months, right after their first heat. Some females can go into heat as early as five months so make sure to watch out for that.

Again these are our suggestions and it is best that you consult a vet to determine the best age to neuter a Golden Retriever.

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Male Dog Neutering: Case Of Golden Retrievers

Male dog neutering can be a rather touchy topic but it has some very practical benefits.

The term neutering simply means to de-sex an animal. Technically it can refer to both females and males. But for some reason the term is more commonly associated with males.

Maybe thatâs because most men canât stand the word castration. They shudder at the mere idea of a scalpel going âdown there.â

For the sake of our discussion about male dog neutering, weâll limit the term neuter to a reference to males.

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What Are Cons Of Spaying

What Age Should I Neuter My Golden Retriever
  • Some owners report a side effect of spaying their bitch is urinary incontinence . Some studies suggest this is only an issue if they are spayed too young/before any heat cycles as the lack of hormones can cause weak muscle tone around the bladder. However, anecdotally, our Goldie was spayed at 2 years 9 months of age and she developed mild urinary incontinence afterwards
  • According to this study, the occurrence of Cranial Cruciate Ligament Tears was significantly more prominent in bitches that had been spayed before age 1. In fact the study suggests that almost 8% of the bitches studied that had been spayed before age 1 had an incidence of this painful injury, whereas no incidents were reported in intact bitches. The study did also consider bitches spayed after age 1 and they found they also had no incidence of this injury
  • Increased incidence of Hypothyroidism/obesity Spayed Goldens have a higher incidence of becoming overweight due to a change in hormones/metabolism
  • Increased risks for certain common cancers for Goldens including Hemangiosarcoma, Mast Cell Tumours, Osteosarcoma and Lymphosarcoma

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