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When Should You Spay A Golden Retriever

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Other Golden Retriever Health Issues Related To Spaying Or Neutering Too Soon

When is the best time to spay or neuter your dog? Vlog 62

There are other health issues that have been linked to spaying or neutering your pet too soon.

Golden Retriever females that were spayed before their first birthday are at an increased risk 60 percent of developing hypothyroidism, which is a metabolic abnormality. Hypothyroidism causes weight gain, poor hair coat quality, and a host of other issues.

Dogs that were spayed earlier are also at an increased risk of developing certain cancers. Osteosarcoma is a bone cancer. While the rates of it in Golden Retrievers are only around 5 percent, it tends to occur significantly more commonly in spayed and neutered Goldens.

Hemangiosarcoma is another type of cancer that Golden Retrievers can get:

Roughly 20 percent of Goldens die from this cancer that affects blood vessels and organs such as the heart and spleen.

According to the survey done of the Golden Retriever Club of America, spayed and neutered Goldens were two to five times more likely to develop this cancer within their heart.

Reasons To Consider All Options Before Spaying Or Neutering A Puppy

Dr. Benjamin Hart of the University of California, Davis, has been researching the effects of spay-neuter for a decade, with support from the American Kennel Club Canine Health Foundation. His first paper on the subject, published in 2013, revealed that Golden Retrievers that had been spayed or neutered had a correlation of being three or four times more likely to develop certain cancers, including lymphosarcoma and hemangiosarcoma, and also more likely to develop joint problems such as hip dysplasia and damage to the cranial cruciate ligament. The team later published data on German Shepherd Dogs and Labrador Retrievers, finding that early spaying and neutering had varying effects on these dogs likelihood to develop joint disorders, cancers, and urinary incontinence.

And when it comes to dogs weighing more than 20 kilos, the study found that the impact of early spay-neuter varies hugely across breeds and sexes. For instance, since most small dogs didnt experience higher rates of the studied cancers and joint problems, Dr. Hart conjectured that at the other end of the scale, Great Danes might suffer them at a high rate. Yet he found that the gentle giants had no increase in joint disorders after early spay-neuter. That was completely unexpected, Dr. Hart told me.

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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When Should I Have My Golden Retriever Spayed Or Neutered

Whilst recommendations vary, vets typically suggest that you should have your Golden Retriever spayed or neutered between the ages of four and nine months. There are various reasons for such a broad timeframe, although some vets suggest that timing can have positive effects on your Golden Retrievers behaviour, dependent on their sex.

Although there is no 100% definite answer, it is often suggested that you should have your male Golden Retriever neutered after he has reached the age of puberty. This is thought to have long-term health benefits, as well as helping to prevent behavioural traits, such as marking and aggression.

For female Golden Retrievers, there is no dead set answer as to when you should have them spayed. Whilst some recommend spaying before first heat , others suggest that this can increase the risk of mammary tumours. We would always recommend consulting your vet for a personalised opinion.

Most studies have said that spaying a dog can calm them down in most cases. However, it should not be seen as a cure-all for puppy problems.

When To Neuter Spay Or Breed Your Golden Retriever

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Golden retrievers are one of the most popular breeds of dogs due to their intelligence, gentle nature, and ease in training, and this can cause owners to wonder whether and when they should neuter, spay, or breed these dogs.

Fortunately, experts in overall canine health, breeding, and veterinary medicine are conducting new studies and research to examine the ethics and long-term effects of neutering, spaying, and breeding and when they should take place.

So, when should your golden retriever be neutered, spayed, or bred? When it comes to surgical sterilization through spaying and neutering, most experts agree that golden retrievers should be between one and two years old before undergoing such procedures. As for breeding, its recommended that golden retrievers reach full physical maturity before mating, which usually occurs around 24 months but can vary among individual retrievers.

Neutering, spaying, and breeding are all practices involving human intervention in the life cycle and natural selection of dogs.

Therefore, these procedures and decisions should be heavily considered by pet owners to promote the health, well-being, and quality of life for their dogs.

When it comes to your golden retriever, none of these practices should be undertaken without extensive research and reputable veterinary care.

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So What Age Do We Choose To Neuter/spay And At What Cost

If I had a male, I would wait till at least one year of age. That way we limit the risk of dysplasia which is its lowest, and cancer rates drop to the normal range comparing to an intact dog. Any sooner you would have higher cancer rates and dysplasia. For females its a bit more confusing. If it were me, Id wait till two years before spaying a female if at all. At that age the risk of dysplasia is low, and cancer rates also return lower nearing intact levels. However, not everyone wants to deal with a female in heat. Its not a cleanly process, especially if you have carpet. You will also have to deal with unwanted male dogs coming around and also risk an unwanted pregnancy. That can also be costly. For anyone other than breeders, waiting that long is probably not the likely or best scenario. In that case, I would suggest discussing with your vet to make a risk-benefit analysis as to when to spay your female. The closest cancer rates to intact female cancer rates, other than beyond 2 years, will be around 6 months. However, you have a higher risk for dysplasia at 6 months. For anyone still reading, I would seriously look at the charts from the study. Ive shared them below so this way you can make an better informed decision with your veterinarian.

Incidence of Cancer

Incidence of Dysplasia

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 that’s because most men can’t stand the word;castration.;They shudder at the mere idea of a scalpel going “down there.”

For the sake of our discussion about male dog neutering, we’ll limit the term;neuter;to a reference to males.

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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.

Do You Have To Neuter Your Golden Retriever


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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What Is Spaying And Neutering

Spaying and neutering refer to the surgical procedures used to sterilize your pup. In other words, making them incapable of reproducing and having puppies. Spaying is the term used to describe removing the reproductive organs of a female dog. Neutering is the term used to describe removing the testicles of a male dog.

Health Consequences Associated With Neutering


When to neuter a golden retriever? Your dogs have a high risk of hyperthyroidism than dogs that are intact. Male Golden retrievers who have undergone the procedure prior to age 1 will have an 80% risk of developing hyperthyroidism, while female golden retrievers neutered before one year of age will have a higher chance of hyperthyroidism by as much as 60%. However, hypothyroidism is a treatable disease in Golden retrievers.

Hip dysplasia

Neutered goldens have a greater chance of developing hip dysplasia. Torn ligaments characterize it. However, some evidence suggests that the risk is increased in dogs neutered before sexual maturity. Hip dysplasia is typical in Golden retrievers, but torn ligaments are less common but not rare. These diseases can be treated by surgery, but it can be costly, and success may differ depending on variables.

Heart problems

When to neuter a golden retriever? There is some evidence that your Golden retriever may develop heart problems. It is greatly increased up to five times in neutered dogs. The risk of hemangiosarcoma is also increased. It is a common cancer in a golden retriever, which causes the death of one in five Golden retrievers. A majority of these tumors occur in the spleen area. A few but a substantial number occurs in the heart. It is a rapidly progressing disease and incurable.

Bone cancer

Taller retrievers

Urinary incontinence

Mammary cancer

Testicular cancer


Prostate gland

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The Pros Of Neutering Your Golden Retriever

Here are the pros of neutering your golden retriever

First, neutering your male golden retriever;

  • Reduces the level of your male golden retrievers aggression.
  • Neutered dogs are more gentle and affectionate;
  • They will try to escape to find a mate;
  • Their prostate health will be better;
  • They will not chase a female in heat;
  • You will avoid the whole mark my territory part
  • They will be calmer;
  • ;They are less likely to hump objects, other pets, and peoples legs.
  • Neutering them will reduce the chance of having anal fistula ( a condition that develops carbuncles around their anus
  • It will control your dogs breeding;

Pros of neutering your female golden retriever

  • Reduction of their heat period;
  • Your female golden and house will be cleaner;
  • They will be calmer;
  • Reduces the risk of your female golden retriever getting breast cancer.

Breed Differences By Size And Sex

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Researchers found that vulnerability to joint disorders was related to body size.

The smaller breeds dont have these problems, while a majority of the larger breeds tend to have joint disorders, said co-author Lynette Hart, professor at the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine.

One of the surprising exceptions to this was among the two giant breeds great Danes and Irish wolfhounds which showed no increased risk to joint disorders when neutered at any age.

Researchers also found the occurrence of cancers in smaller dogs was low, whether neutered or kept intact. In two breeds of smaller dogs, the Boston terrier and the shih tzu, there was a significant increase in cancers with neutering.

Another important finding was that the sex of the dog sometimes made a difference in health risks when neutered. Female Boston terriers neutered at the standard six months of age, for example, had no increased risk of joint disorders or cancers compared with intact dogs, but male Boston terriers neutered before a year of age had significantly increased risks.

Previous studies have found that neutering or spaying female golden retrievers at any age increases the risk of one or more of the cancers from 5 percent to up to 15 percent.

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What Is The Best Age To Spay A Golden Retriever

The main question is: what is the best age to spay your golden retriever? Well do our best to answer your question.

There are many different opinions on the topic. Some people believe that the best age to spay a dog depends on multiple factors not just one. Breed, sex, agility, temperament all of these come into play when deciding on the best age for spaying.

Is Spaying Or Neutering Surgery Dangerous

While both spaying and neutering arec common operations, they are considered major, and therefore, your dog is put under with a general anesthesia. An anesthetic always comes with the risk of serious complications that could result in the death of your dog. Modern medications and monitoring equipment means that the risks are relatively low, but they certainly exist.

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Why Spay Your Golden Before A Heat Cycle

The biggest reasons to spay your pet before her first heat cycle are convenience and minimizing her risk of mammary cancer.

Cleaning up after a dog who is on her heat cycle can be very messy. She might have to wear diapers and have her bedding changed frequently.

If your dog is on her heat cycle, she cant always go around other dogs, especially if there might be an unneutered male around. This can mean no trips to the dog park, and many boarding facilities wont board a female that is in heat due to the problems it poses.

Spaying your dog before her first heat cycle means you dont ever have to worry about the risk of a pregnant dog, as puppies can be hard to manage. Having puppies too early can also adversely affect ;your current puppy, so its something you have to be very careful about.

The Right Time To Spay Your Pet

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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.

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When Should You Neuter Your Female Golden Retriever

The perfect age to neuter your female dog is around 8-10 months after their first heat cycle because their sexual hormones have a very important role in helping them grow in the proper way.

Some of the female golden retrievers can go into their heat early, even before theyre six months of age, so in that time make sure to look after your dog to notice any sudden changes in their behaviors that indicate they are looking for a mate.

By now you must have noticed that male and female golden retrievers dont reach maturity at the same age, and you can learn about all the differences between male vs female golden retrievers here. There are 19 of them, and you should know most if not all of them to understand what your dog is going through at every stage.

What Are The Risks

With most highly bred breeds especially Goldens they are often maligned by disorders and cancer. So, heres a quick overview of what the study says the breed suffer from depending on when their surgical castration was performed. The aim of providing this information is about giving you all the information to make the best decision.

4% 5%

Luckily, at least females are not more or less susceptible to urinary incontinence, Pyometra or mammary cancer. It doesnt appear to matter for these conditions when your girl gets spayed. So you can keep that a constant in your considerations for your Golden Retriever which at least will help, right?

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