Spaying and Neutering Animals

Facts about Spaying and Neutering

Why shouldn't my pet have just one litter?
While it may seem harmless, letting your pet have one--or even two--litters can cause big problems. Even if you find homes for all (or most) of the puppies or kittens, what about their puppies and kittens? In less than a year, all those puppies and kittens will be grown dogs or cats and able to have litters of their own. On a daily basis, thousands of puppies and kittens--healthy but homeless--are killed. Many of them came from "just one litter."

Consider these facts:*

One dog and her puppies, in just six years, can produce 67,000 puppies.
In seven years, one cat and her offspring can be the source of 420,000 cats.
In the United States, every day, 70,000 (or more) puppies and kittens are born. Just 10,000 humans are born each day. Who will take care of all these dogs and cats? It's not just a problem of too many--each pet is an individual life.

Altering: It's Good for Your Pet
Neutered pets tend to live longer than un neutered pets.
Neutered pets have no chance or drastically reduced chances of suffering from a great many health problems. These health problems can be costly and difficult to treat.
Spayed females do not suffer from uterine or ovarian cancer and are highly unlikely to suffer from breast cancer, especially if spayed before her first estrus (or heat) cycle.
In male animals, neutering drastically reduces the chances of prostate difficulties (including cancer).
Altering: It's Good for You
Neutered pets are more loving and better tempered pets.
Neutered cats are less likely to mark their territory (or spray).
A spayed female doesn't have estrus (or heat cycles). The estrus cycle happens about twice a year for dogs and three or more times a year for cats. It can last for six or more days and often results in a distracted, nervous female--who may cry or howl--and numerous unwanted male visitors.
Neutered pets are less likely to bite. While neutering isn't a cure-all for all behavior problems, in combination with training it can mean drastic changes in a pet's behavior--almost always for the better.
Male dogs or cats who are neutered are much less likely to run away or get into fights.
Altering: It's Good for the Community
Animal control agencies in nearly every community cost the taxpayers (us) millions of dollars every year. They do a good job but it's just not enough. With many millions of homeless animals, we are seeing an annual rise in dog bites and attacks, torn open garbage containers, feces in public and private areas, and angry, frightened citizens who do not understand the misery of these unwanted pets. Additionally, homeless animals disturb the ecological balance by scaring away or killing birds and wildlife.
Put your spay-neuter knowledge to the test! Go to the next page for a quick quiz on the Myths and Truths of Altering Your Pet.
Pet Overpopulation is a Problem You Can Help Solve.
Spay or neuter your pet.
*Statistics courtesy the Humane Society of the United States brochure "Just One Litter . . . Facts about Spaying and Neutering Your Pet." 2100 L Street, NW, Washington, DC 20037.


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