Why Do We Spay Dogs?

Puppies are one of the greatest things of all time, in my opinion. Sweet puppy kisses, puppy breath, extra puppy skin, chew toys, and more are enjoyed by most all people. So if puppies are so wonderful, why do veterinarians push to spay all females?

“An ovariohysterectomy (spay) is the surgical removal of the female reproductive organs. The operation removes the two ovaries, the uterine horns and the body of the uterus.”

Several reasons here, including prevention of unwanted litters, prevention of the mess of a dog in heat, and the risks of complications from labor.   But if your female dog lives outside in a fenced yard and she has no chance of becoming pregnant, why spay?

There is a significantly increased chance of pyometra in aging, intact female dogs. Each time the dog goes into heat, her cervix opens, allowing the possibility of bacteria to enter. After the heat cycle is completed, the cervix closes and that bacteria has a perfect environment to grow. This creates a dangerous situation for the dog. 

Here is a picture of a 7 yr old intact (unspayed) female that came into the veterinary clinic not feeling well. Her white blood count was double what it should be, and her abdomen (belly) was swollen. 

This entire uterus is full of infection. It must be carefully removed to prevent rupture into the abdomen. A normal uterus should be about the diameter of a pencil. 

Her is the uterus after removal and opening:

This poor dog was carrying all of that infection around in her body for several weeks. 

Thankfully she did well in surgery and went home without complications. 

Remember to spay your sweet girl to prevent this very real danger!

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