Veterinary → Spay/Neuter FAQ’s
Is spay or neuter surgery painful? Can it harm my pet?
During a spay or neuter surgery, dogs and cats are fully anesthetized, so they feel no pain. Afterwards, most animals seem to experience some discomfort, but signs of discomfort disappear within a few days, and with pain management medication, pain may not be experienced at all. Serious harm as a result of spay or neuter surgery is extremely rare.
Is spay or neuter surgery expensive?
Spay or neuter surgery generally costs less than most major surgeries, especially if the dog or cat is young and healthy. We are proud to offer the lowest prices in town, with $85 for dog neuter, dog spay and cat spay and $55 for a cat neuter.
Shouldn’t a female dog or cat have one litter, or at least one heat cycle, before being spayed?
To the contrary, a dog or cat has the best chance of good health if spayed before her first heat. Early spaying reduces the risk of mammary tumors and prevents other health problems, such as life-threatening uterine infections, before aging brings greater susceptibility.
Can a pregnant dog or cat be safely spayed?
Many dogs and cats are spayed while pregnant to prevent the birth of puppies or kittens.
Don’t sterilized dogs and cats become overweight?
In some dogs and cats, metabolism does decrease following spaying or neutering. Nevertheless, if fed the proper amount of food and adequately exercised, spayed or neutered dogs and cats are unlikely to become overweight.
Does spaying or neutering make dogs and cats less affectionate?
Freed from the urge to mate, dogs and cats tend to be calmer and more content after spaying or neutering. Spayed or neutered dogs and cats are more, not less, likely to show affection toward their human companions.
At what age should my dog or cat be spayed or neutered?
Because early spaying or neutering is optimal, dogs and cats usually have the surgery at about 6 months of age; with advanced techniques and safer anesthetic drugs, a growing number of animals are being spayed or neutered at 3 to 6 months of age. Even dogs and cats who are years older, however, benefit from being spayed or neutered.
How old should my pet be when he or she is spayed/neutered?
We recommend having your pet fixed between 4-6 months old. Cats can go in to heat as early as 4 months and fixing early prevents accidental litters. Younger pets recover a lot faster post-operatively and have fewer complications. PAWS veterinarians are specially trained to perform pediatric surgeries between 8 weeks and 4 months of age, however with pets in this age range there is a higher risk of contracting infectious disease due to the lack of appropriate vaccinations.
What about my senior pet’s surgery?
Even when animals are older, the benefits of spaying and neutering almost always outweigh the risks of surgery. Vets should give pets more than five years old pre-surgical blood tests, to show how well their major organs are functioning. That will help keep them safe through anesthesia. Ask your veterinarian about blood work for your senior pet before scheduling your senior pets spay/neuter appointment.
When should I take away food and water before surgery?
It’s important to stop feeding your pet by midnight the night before surgery. You can offer water overnight but remove it in the morning. This will help to reduce the risk of vomiting under anesthesia.
What about Vaccinations?
To help prevent common diseases, we strongly recommend your pet be vaccinated at least one week prior to surgery with DAPPv (distemper/parvo- for dogs) or FVRCP (distemper/upper respiratory- for cats). While no vaccine is 100% effective, vaccination will lessen the chance of your pet contracting disease. We recommend puppies have at least two DAPPv, two to three weeks apart prior to surgery.