Sadly, each year more than 15 million dogs and cats are killed in the United States because of overpopulation. Spay/Neuter surgeries help prevent the unwanted birth of animals that would be difficult to place into good homes. Spaying and neutering of pets also offers health benefits. It lowers the incidence of sex-hormone related behaviors or diseases. The neutered male cat has a decreased urine odor, less of a tendency to fight & roam, and it is far less inclined to mark its territory by spraying urine. The neutered male dog is also less likely to roam, mark territory, and display aggression towards other dogs. Neutering can decrease the unwanted mounting behaviors, lower the chance of tumors around the anus and penis, and also lower the risk of prostate enlargement (which occurs in at least 60% of unneutered male dogs 5 years or older.) Spayed female cats and dogs do not have reproductive tract disease problems, they have less urinary tract infections, and they have significantly fewer cases of mammary cancer. We generally recommend that all felines and canines be spayed or neutered before 6 months of age. This ensures that females are spayed before their 1st heat cycle thus decreasing the chance of mammary cancer. Neutering before 6 months ensures that the surgery is performed prior to puberty when all of the behaviors associated with testosterone may begin. For all of our surgeries our main emphasis is the well being of your pet. At Carter County Animal Hospital, we strive to practice the highest quality medicine for your animal. Whether a spay/neuter or an exploratory surgery, we still want to do what’s in your pet’s best interest and not take any risks. For all animals that go under anesthesia we recommend the following:
Pre-anesthetic blood profile: The pre-anesthetic blood profile is to maximize patient safety and alert the doctor to the presence of dehydration, anemia, infection, diabetes, and/or kidney or liver disease, which could complicate your pet’s procedure, thereby compromising your pet’s health. These conditions may not be detected without a blood profile. These tests are similar to those your own physician would run if you were to undergo anesthesia.
Laser Surgery: CCAH utilizes a CO2 laser for most of our surgical procedures which diminishes the pain, inflammation and blood loss during our surgical procedures. This is not mandatory for our elective spays and neuters but is highly recommended. Should you have any questions please ask a staff member or Dr. Wilson so they can be answered properly.
IV catheter and Fluid Therapy during Surgery: Intravenous catheters during surgery allow fluids to be given which help to counteract hypotension (low blood pressure) produced by anesthesia. If an emergency situation should arise during surgery, an IV catheter also allows venous access so that drugs can be given during the first few critical minutes of an emergency.
Pain management: We believe that all animals undergoing a surgical procedure be kept as pain free as possible. We give all pets an injection of anti-inflammatory pain medication immediately before surgery. We also give take home pain medications for the next few days after surgery. Good pain control helps pets heal faster and more effectively as well as relieve post-surgical discomfort.