What Do I Need To Know About Spaying My Dog?

Here's why it's so important.

Dog spay

If you're wondering if you should spay your dog, look no further. Here you’ll learn what a dog spay is, what the recovery process looks like, and why you should book your appointment to get this procedure done (if you haven’t already).

What is a dog spay?

“Spaying is a surgical procedure to prevent unwanted pregnancies in female dogs,” Dr. Ann Hohenhaus, a veterinarian at Animal Medical Center in New York City, told The Dodo.

Not only will this surgery prevent unwanted pregnancies, but it’ll also stop your dog from having heat cycles (aka periods), and it comes with a lot of other health benefits too.

While your dog will have to go under general anesthesia to get this procedure done, a standard spay from beginning to end (meaning from when anesthesia is administered to when your dog wakes up) only lasts about one to two hours, according to Dr. Hohenhaus.

What’s the recovery like after my dog gets spayed?

Most dogs recover pretty quickly after their spay.

The most important thing is to keep her rested and away from her incision for about a week, and many vets will give you a fancy cone in order to help stop your pup from licking her stitches.

While most dogs absolutely hate this cone, it’s very important to make sure she keeps it on so she stays away from her battle scars.

What are the health benefits of getting my dog spayed?

“This procedure also has many added benefits,” Dr. Hohenhaus said. Some of them include:

- Spaying prevents pyometra, a common but life-threatening uterus infection of unspayed female dogs. According to Dr. Hohenhaus, by the age of 10, approximately 25 percent of female dogs will have developed pyometra, so spaying could save your dog a lot of pain as she ages.

- Spaying virtually eliminates the risk of uterine and ovarian cancer.

- Spaying your dog before 6 months of age can also decrease the risk of breast cancer.

So while it might be tempting to put it off, getting your dog spayed is one of the first steps you should take as a pet owner — it might even save her life!