For the Love of Animals, Spay and Neuter Your Pets

Op-Ed, Nov 26, 2011

For the Love of Animals, Spay and Neuter Your Pets

Every day more than 100 dogs are put into shelters across the States alone; this number excludes cats. 30-60% of these are euthanized because they weren’t able to be adopted in time. Spaying and neutering helps stop overpopulation of animals and makes more room in shelters for animals that need a home. That’s a stupidly large number considering the solution to avoid this problem is so easy: i.e. spaying and neutering your pets ESPECIALLY if they are outdoor animals. If you think that if your animal gets another pregnant, than so what? Puppies and kittens have no problem getting adopted. Well, first of all the statistics say otherwise; and secondly, puppies and kittens grow up quickly and into stray animals who can contract painful diseases, die awful deaths (e.g. traffic, hypothermia, etc.), or get euthanized. The procedure is routine and the recovery process doesn’t take long- best of all is that you’re helping fight overpopulation and preventing animals needlessly being put down.

Pet owners often avoid this procedure because of their own biases and fallacies; for instance sometimes male pet owners won’t get their male pets neuters because they think that they’re animal losing their balls is like them losing their own. Guys, you really need to get over this- imagine if you had a parent whom you lived with your whole life and didn’t allow you to not only have sex, but also to never masturbate. In other words, if you are not going to breed your dog then don’t tease the poor thing by having testosterone coursing through his body for his whole existence- it is unfair, pure and simple.

Another misconception, which I personally heard from an acquaintance, is that they don’t want to change the personality of their pet, meaning they think they’ll become fat, dopey, and lethargic; this is completely untrue. As an owner of both cats and dogs, I can safely say that my pets are anything but lazy and dimwitted, they are just as playful and cunning as ever. If you’re worried about weight gain: then feed them properly!

There are actually many benefits that come from spaying and neutering your furry friends. Here are some:

  • Your pet will be healthier and happier.

o      In female cats and dogs, spaying prevents uterine infections and breast cancer (yes, animals get it too); this should be done before her first heat. In males, it helps fight off testicular cancer and prostate gland complications if done before they are 6 months old. Help avoid your pet from contracting these painful and debilitating diseases, the survival rates are not in their favour (especially for females).

o      This will also save you money in the long run, as I’m sure some of you know pet procedures are very expensive.

o      Pets will not experience sexual discomfort


  • You don’t have to deal with your females going into heat and your males humping and spraying everyone and everything. *Shudder*

o      Female cats and dogs bleed when they go into heat and can get pretty messy. Regarding felines, you won’t have to put up with them howling to attract mate, which can get very loud.

o      I don’t think I need to say anything about the humping issue, except that anyone who knows a humpy dog is aware of how bloody annoying it is to constantly fend off a horny puppy.

o      As for spraying (i.e. urine!), it’s stinky and gross and it quickly becomes a habit, and they will do it all over your house- yuck

o      Also, you won’t find strange animals in your yard who have tracked down the scent of your horny animal. In some areas, this could mean a coyote or wolf- not so safe for your kids.


  • They’ll be less likely to run away.

o      Cats and dogs who have their balls are known to be escape artists. They will do anything to get some nookie. This puts your pet life at risk, especially if he were to run through traffic.

o      A promiscuous pet could also potentially attract a disease, especially if fornicating with a stray animal.


  • They’re less aggressive.

o      Un-neutered male animals are more prone to get into fights. Again, this is painful for your pet and will be costly for you.

o      By neutering them, they become more mellow and will concentrate on their human family instead of trying to find a mate and fighting off potential suitors.

Here is a link that features a letter from a shelter manager describing the reality of how many animals are needlessly euthanized because pet owners don’t research the facts about spaying and neutering.

NataOriginally from Ontario I moved out to Vancouver with my family when I was in high school. I currently am an undergrad at UBC majoring in Classical Studies and will be attending Graduate School next year studying Ancient Archaeology. I also volunteer for the David Suzuki Foundation when my schedule allows it. While I do not consider myself an outdoorsy person I have a profound respect for nature and her marvels. It is only natural that I have adopted a lifestyle to try and accommodate it as much as possible. I believe that at the grass roots level, if everyone makes small changes they can really add up to a huge movement for a more eco-friendly lifestyle.
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