The In's and Out's of Desexing Your Pet

Vet Checks In
with Rachael Wood
from Mount Vet Hospital

Deciding whether or not to desex your pet can be a big decision to make.

Desexing is not only beneficial to your pet in many ways but is highly recommended. 


There are many advantages to desexing both male and female pets. One of the biggest benefits is that is can prevent unwanted offspring and further keep animals out of shelters.

Another giant advantage is preventing undesirable behaviour. In male animals this is the biggest advantage as it can prevent them from becoming aggressive, roaming and wandering, marking their territory (spraying for male felines). In females it can also reduce the mood swings when on heat and also limit mess when they are in season.

The most important reason for desexing your pet is the medical benefit. In females desexing at five to six months of age, before they have their first heat can help reduce the risk of them contracting mammary tumours (which is like breast cancer), tumours on the ovaries and uterus and also having a pyometra. In male animals desexing at the recommended age also helps prevent prostatic disease, perianal tumours, and eliminates the risk of testicular cancers.  


The first question most pet owners have is what age they can desex there pet? It is recommended that desexing takes place for both males and females when they five to six months of age. The reason that desexing is recommended at this age is because dogs and cats can reach sexual maturity from as early as six months to eighteen months, depending on the breed.  


Upon deciding to book your pet in for desexing, they will need to be admitted to hospital. On arrival there will be a short consult with a veterinary nurse to ensure all vital signs are okay and to go through the surgery consent form. At this stage you (as the owner) will be able to decide on what extra things you would like your pet to have whilst having the procedure completed. The first option is a pre-anaesthetic blood test; which will ensure all of the main internal organs are functioning well and will be able to handle the anaesthetic. The second option is to have your pet on intravenous fluids whilst the surgery is taking place, which will assist maintaining homeostasis in the body. Another option is to have you pet microchipped or vaccinated, if they have not previously been done. After the consultation, your pet will be admitted to a hospital cage and sedated, ready for their procedure.


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