How Old Before Neutering?
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Thread: How Old Before Neutering?

  1. #1
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    How Old Before Neutering?

    Hello! I just adopted an 8 week old male puppy. I am wondering how soon I should have him neutered? Are there pros/cons to having him neutered earlier or later? Thanks!

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    Junior Member jillybean's Avatar
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    Re: How Old Before Neutering?

    6 months is pretty standard age. I don't think many vets will do it before then.

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    Senior Member all4thedogs's Avatar
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    Re: How Old Before Neutering?

    Many vets will neuter starting at 6-8wks, its called pediatric neutering. Some prefer to wait until 6 months, and some wait until sexual maturity.

    Depending on the breed I personally like to wait until they are finished growing. In giant breeds that can take up to 18-24 months. BUT this requires the owner to be VERY responsible. Not leaving them unattended in the yard, off leash etc.

    For the most people it is easiest (and safe) to neuter a male dog at 5-6 months old, if not before. This also helps prevent unwanted sexual behavior that un-neutered males often show.

    Also, if you adopted your dog there may be a time requirement on when you have to have him neutered
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    Senior Member ozzy's Avatar
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    Re: How Old Before Neutering?

    I just got my boy neutered at a little over 5 months. The breeder had suggested 6 months and the vet said he was ready at 5 so I just went ahead and did it in order to prevent any unwanted sexual behaviour. I worried though about the right timing and I still worry a little since he is not done growing but it's done now.

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    Senior Member Laurelin's Avatar
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    Re: How Old Before Neutering?

    This is one of those things people will never agree on.

    I like to wait until I know the dog is completely done growing. The earliest I've gotten a dog neutered is a year and a half. But this requires you to be a lot more diligent than the average owner.
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    Senior Member lovemygreys's Avatar
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    Re: How Old Before Neutering?

    I agree w/Laurelin that this is a topic most people have to agree to disagree on.

    With a large breed dog like a rottweiler, GSD or greyhound I'd wait as long as possible - ideally until they stop growing. With a small breed dog I have no problems w/neutering early. For purely pet dogs, I'm in favor of pediatric spays/neuters to prevent unwanted litters. Novice/newbie owners often underestimate a dog's desire to reproduce. If the owner has even the slightest iota of a doubt as to whether they can *always* contain an unaltered dog to a leash or supervised fenced area then I support altering as young as possible regardless of breed.
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    Senior Member Poly's Avatar
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    Re: How Old Before Neutering?

    Quote Originally Posted by cindyareed View Post
    Hello! I just adopted an 8 week old male puppy. I am wondering how soon I should have him neutered? Are there pros/cons to having him neutered earlier or later? Thanks!
    I'm assuming by "adoption" you mean you did not get your puppy from a breeder and maybe got it from a shelter or rescue.

    Let me get on my soapbox for a minute. These days most shelters and rescues either do pediatric altering of puppies or require a hefty deposit for adopting out unaltered puppies which you can only get back if you alter the puppy by a specified age. I really don't understand why all shelters and rescues don't do that. OK - excuse me while I come off the soapbox.


    Back to your case where I'll assume there is no breeder involved.

    I would suggest you contact the vet or the clinic you will be using and get a recommendation for the best age for performing the operation. Yes there are health pros and cons for both early and later neutering and these tradeoffs are best handled by the health practitioners.
    Last edited by Poly; 10-15-2007 at 12:14 PM.

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    Re: How Old Before Neutering?

    Thank-you to everyone for your comments and response! I've been doing some research online and have read a lot about early neutering and the benefits. I'm going to call our local vet to get their opinion, and go from there. Thanks again!

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    Re: How Old Before Neutering?

    why do you wait to neuter big dogs until they are older?

  11. #10
    Senior Member Alpha's Avatar
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    Re: How Old Before Neutering?

    ditto to what all4thedogs said

    With studies coming out every source "proving" pros and cons to early/late/not neutering at all, it's a personal choice.

    My next dog will be neutered after a year after weighing the risks. At the same time, Roxy was spayed at 6 months old, and I've yet to see any health "cons", as well as Hades, who was done by-law at 6 months.

    Hades also has shown no roaming behaviours, any type of distraction to bitches in heat, he doesn't hump and he doesn't lift his leg. All other than the latter most of the time are heavily dependent on training, but I've never seen the behaviours at all. We didn't have to work through any of them with training, they just aren't there.

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    Senior Member ACampbell's Avatar
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    Re: How Old Before Neutering?

    My vet personally would rather the dogs testicals have dropped or about 6 months of age before neutering. If they have dropped it makes for a much easier surgery, as they don't have to fish for it up in the stomach (which is the same thing for most animals). Different vets have different policies, I don't know of any health cons about neutering a younger dog. The pro's are a big thing though, the marking their territory gets old fast, but even some altered males do this (such as my basset hound, who wasn't neutered until he was about 2 years old because of unwanted sexual behavior that he had with his previous owner). Ok, I seem to get off topic and lose where I'm going with things, my suggestion, ask your vet what they think is a reasonable age to have your pet altered.
    If at first you don't succeed, destroy all evidence that you ever tried.

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    Senior Member Dogstar's Avatar
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    Re: How Old Before Neutering?

    Actually, I believe there are two studies showing an increased risk of bone cancers in dogs who were neutered before 16 weeks, BUT I think they were both breed specific- goldens and BMDs.

    I prefer to wait until dogs are fully mature, mentally, so I tend to neuter my boys after 18 months. Mal will likely be neutered around 24-28 months, although it does depend on what he looks like, conformationally at that point- I may keep him intact and continue showing him as I doubt he'll finish before then.

    All that said, dealing with an intact dog is somewhat more challanging. You need to be on top of training challanges and able to deal with setting your dog up to succeed in higher-distraction environments. If you have an intact girl as well, you need to be observant and VERY able to keep them separated- and everyone in the household needs to be very devoted to this as well.

    Talk to your vet, talk to your dog's breeder, if you got him from a reputable breeder. Rescue groups generally want dogs neutered ASAP- I require it done within 30 days of adoption if it hasn't already happened, with guys I adopt out, although this is unusual and has only happened once (just weren't any appointments available when the dog came in a few weeks before christmas, didn't want him done when I wouldn't be there to supervise and keep him from playing too hard just after christmas, and we couldnt' get an appointment before mid-January otherwise.) So he was neutered three weeks after hwe went home at 5 months.

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