Spay and Neuter
We work with UCAN located in Cincinnati, Ohio who offers spaying and neutering services for the community at a low price. For 2017, Butler County residents can get their cat or dog fixed for $20, and pit bulls are FREE! The $20 includes a free rabies and FVRCP vaccination for cats, and a free rabies and microchip for dogs. To sign up for a UCAN transport (animals are dropped off and picked up at Animal Friends Humane Society, and UCAN transports them to their location in Cincinnati for the surgery) please stop by our facility during operating hours. We have two transports per month throughout 2017. Don’t delay! These slots fill up quickly. Payment and a valid ID are required for the UCAN program at the time of sign up. Learn more about UCAN at www.ucancincinnati.org.
Making the choice to spay or neuter a pet is sometimes difficult for some people because of the many misconceptions associated with these simple surgeries. Far too many people believe the myths they have heard regarding companion animals, their reproduction, and spaying and neutering. Pets who are not spayed or neutered not only face potential health problems, they can also become a part of the bigger, serious problem of overpopulation.
The overpopulation of dogs and cats is a tragedy resulting in the suffering and premature death of MILLIONS of companion animals every year. Dogs and cats reproduce at such an alarming rate that there is simply not enough proper homes for the surplus animals born every year.
It may seem difficult to see your connection to overpopulation, but if your dog or cat is not yet spayed or neutered, you are potentially part of the problem. An animal who is spayed or neutered is an animal that CANNOT get pregnant or impregnate another, even if the animal accidentally slips out of a home and becomes a stray. Solving the overpopulation problem requires the cooperation of all pet owners to do their part to fulfill all of the requirements of a responsible pet owner-including controlling their reproduction through spaying or neutering.
Be part of the solution to animal overpopulation.
Through the process of domestication, cat and dogs have changed in many important ways, including their reproductive cycles. Companion animals reproduce by instinct, not emotion. Instinct tells animals, through chemical connections, to propagate for the survival of the species. In the wild, the balance in nature dictates how often a species will reproduce. But because dogs and cats are no longer part of a wild ecosystem, this basic instinct leads to reproduction cycles that are not held in check by nature, resulting in far too many dogs and cats born for the number of “responsible” homes available.
Female Cats and Dogs
Female cats and dogs can reproduce as early as 6 months of age. The “heat” cycle for a female cat can recur up to 4 times per year and can be very aggravating for the cat owner and uncomfortable for the cat. Female dogs go through a “heat” cycle up to twice a year. During this time, both female cats and dogs will emit odors that can lure a male from miles away and may even try to escape to breed. Wandering male cats and dogs may fight and mark territory outside of your home as long as your female is in heat or not yet spayed.
If impregnated, litter sizes may vary from 2 to 10 kittens or 2 to 20 puppies. This presents the even bigger problem of finding good homes for each of the offspring and making sure that each kitten or puppy (along with the parent animal) is spayed or neutered to prevent further births.
Male Cats and Dogs
Male cats and dogs are capable of reproducing as early as 6 month of age. Males do not go through a heat cycle like females-they are capable of reproducing at any time. At 6 months old, maturing males often begin to develop behavior problems associated with their hormones; behavior problems that can develop into lifelong habits. They can become territorial, and begin marking their territory by spraying strong smelling urine inside your home. Also, some males may become overly dominant or aggressive. In the search for females in heat, males may try to escape outside the safety of the home and yard. While loose, not only do they face countless dangers, but they are also nuisances and threats in the community. They could sustain injuries, which may be life threatening and costly to treat. Of course, they may also impregnate females.
Spaying and neutering is a safe, one-time, common operations performed by a veterinarian to prevent an animal from reproducing. The spay surgery (for females) is called an “ovariohysterectomy.” This is the removal of the ovaries, oviducts, uterus and cervix. The neuter surgery (for males) is called an “orchidectomy”, or castration. During the operation, the testicles, epididymis and spermatic cord are removed.
Cats and dogs can be spayed or neutered as early as 8 weeks of age. However, these surgeries can be done at any age depending on the health of the animal. During surgery, the animal is under complete anesthesia. The procedure usually takes 20 to 60 minutes and, in most cases, the animal is able to go home the same day. Most animals recover so quickly, they are back to normal behavior within a few hours. The sutures, or stitches, should be removed after 7-10 days.
Spaying and neutering at the earliest recommended age can help to prevent annoying problems such as territorial marking, dominance, aggression, and roaming instincts.
Spaying and neutering can prevent serious and costly health problems. Females run a great risk of contracting uterine, ovarian, and mammary cancer as well as life-threatening pyometra (inflammation of the uterus). Males are prone to testicular cancer and prostate problems. Spaying or neutering your pet will prevent these problems by up to 90%. Your pet will be healthier, have a better chance of living much longer, and cost less money in veterinary bills in the long run.