Neutering (or desexing) a male dogcan be very beneficial for dogs and their owners. For some it’s an easy decision - but for others, it can take some careful consideration before reaching the right decision for the dog and for the owners.
Health and behaviour are often top of the list when it comes to deciding to neuter a dog. However, all dogs are different - their personalities, breed, and any pre-existing health conditions should be taken into consideration before deciding to neuter.
5 Reasons Why Desexing Male Dogs Is A Good Idea
For some, neutering is essential, whilst for others is a necessary precaution depending on the dog’s immediate environment. For example, male dogs can vary in their perseverance of females in heat. If there are intact female dogs nearby, on the same street or that visit the same park, an unneutered male dog can be overcome with the urge to roam. They may then be more susceptible to getting lost, injured in fights, or causing general chaos and upset in your day as you try to maintain control.
1) Reduced Aggressive Behaviour:
Dog-to-dog aggression can be frightening, and a dog amped up on testosterone can do significant damage - even if this isn’t their default personality type. There are, however, a number of causes of aggression in dogs, with hormonal aggression being one of the most common.
Neutering a dog prevents the overload of hormones that can lead to aggression. The urge to mate can be incredibly powerful in male dogs, and many pet owners find their male dog becomes more placid and easygoing after the procedure.
2) Prevention Of Unwanted Breeding
Neutering prevents unwanted litters, as the dog can no longer reproduce. If a pet owner is certain they don’t intend to breed their dog, then neutering can be helpful. In cases where the dog is particularly aggressive or territorial while nearby females are in heat, neutering takes away that intense hormonal reaction and calms the dog’s behaviour.
Aggression that stems from asserting dominance and claiming territory - which may be linked to the reproductive urge - is reduced in many dogs after undergoing the desexing procedure.
3) Reduced Urge To Mark Territory
Dogs mark their territory to show other dogs that the surface is their property. But it’s also a way to communicate with other dogs. At sexual maturity - at around 6 to 12 months of age - some dogs begin to mark with small amounts of urine. This contains pheromones that demonstrate they are ready to mate, inviting females while sending a warning to other males.
When dogs are neutered, the sex drive is greatly reduced which means they no longer have interest in leaving these messages on marked territory.
4) Reduced Risk Of Some Health Conditions
By neutering their dogs, pet owners can help their pets avoid some types of medical conditions. For example, it can greatly reduce the chance of developing testicular and prostate problems, such as cancer. It can also prevent the development of perianal tumours.
These health issues are related to hormones. By removing hormonal production, pet owners give their dogs a better chance at avoiding the prolonged pain these types of illnesses cause.
5) Behavioural Improvements
Some dogs are naturally more excitable than others. However, some intensely hyperactive dogs may benefit from neutering as it calms the overall personality. Similarly, dogs who display aggressive traits or who guard their territory fiercely, can also benefit.
Choosing To Desex Your Dog
If a pet owner does not wish to breed their pet and is experiencing trouble with an overly aggressive, protective male dog, neutering is the best choice for pet owners and dogs alike.
Some behavioural issues may stem from trauma (seen occasionally in rescues), and some behaviours could respond well to retraining. However, desexing is almost certainly going to help the dog feel more at ease within themselves as they lose the hormones that drive many of these undesirable behaviours.
Deciding to desex is complicated, but there are many reasons why it might be the right choice. If you would like to discuss desexing your dog with a professional or would like to know more about the procedure, please contact Animal Tracks Vet for more information.