Why you should spay or neuter your pet

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PETS - GRAPHBy Dr. Parker T. Barker and Prof. Percy Pussycat

Ok everybody; let’s tackle a hard topic today. Why should you have your dog spayed or neutered? Both Percy and I have been “fixed” and we are proof positive that not only is it the right thing to do but we are none the worse for it. Since I have moved here six months ago, I have noticed that there are lots and lots of pets that haven’t been spay or neutered. Shelters are way overcrowded because of this. And when shelters are overcrowded, and they have to find space for all the new pets that keep coming in, what happens? You guessed it. They have to either be sent somewhere else, or what is easier, but much sadder, is that they are “put down”.

Did you know that in the U.S. a dog or cat is euthanized (which means killed) every 13 seconds? That is about 2.4 million every year. Every 13 seconds. Five during one Super Bowl commercial. These are mostly young adoptable puppies and kittens who have done nothing wrong other than be born. And they are being born because many people simply don’t understand the terrible overpopulation that has occurred all across the U.S. Let’s take a look at what the North Shore Animal League and the Best Friends Society, both highly respected non-profits, say about why you should spay or neuter your pet.

Myth: My pet will get fat and lazy.
Fact: Spaying or neutering does not make pets fat or lazy. The truth is that pets get fat and lazy because they are fed too much and do not get enough exercise.

Myth: It is better to have one litter first.
Fact: Females spayed before their first heat cycle are typically healthier. Every time a female pet goes through a heat cycle she is at an increased risk for breast cancer and uterine infections.

Myth: My male pet will feel like less of a male.
Fact: Pets do not have any concept of masculinity. Neutering your male pet will not cause him to suffer any kind of emotional identity crisis, nor will it change his basic personality. Your pet will be healthier and a better companion.

Myth: My pet is purebred; they don’t end up in animal shelters.
Fact: One in four animals that enter shelters are purebred. Regardless of whether or not they are purebred, 50% of animals that enter into shelters are euthanized due to overpopulation.

Myth: My dog will no longer be a protective watch dog.
Fact: Spaying or neutering does not affect a dog’s natural instinct to protect its home and family. A dog’s temperament is formed more by genetics and environment than by sex hormones.

Myth: It is unhealthy to spay and neuter your pet when they are young.
Fact: Spaying and neutering is safe for young animals. There is no veterinary research that suggests spaying or neutering pets before six months of age interferes with healthy development.

Over its lifetime, a female animal that is not fixed can have over 100 babies and male animals can literally father thousands. Do you really want that responsibility?

See figures on above.

These figures aren’t exaggerated to make a point. This data is real and at this point it is six years old, which means things have probably gotten worse. So both Percy and I are asking you, imploring you really. Make the right decision and have your dog or cat fixed. They will be happier for it and you will be doing contributing greatly to control the overpopulation of the dog and cat world. Thank you and good night.

Dr. Parker T. Barker received his doctorate in Squirrel Chasing and Hoovering from the University of Hartford, CT Rescue Center. He lives on Lady’s Island with his sister, Peanut and their great Mom. Prof. Percy Pussycat is a trained animal behaviourist and received his degree from the Canine and Cat Institute in London. He lives in Shell Point with his brother, Harley and devoted human family.