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Rebecca, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 14880
Experience:  More than 30 years of companion animal practice.
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I have two black mini schnauzer pups. Litter mates. One

Customer Question

I have two black mini schnauzer pups. Litter mates. One female. One male. Need to know best age for spay neuter. The old standard was at 6 months. This would be scheduled for beginning of December 2015. Do not want to risk pregnancy or aggressive behavior. Lots of controversy & new research now about these procedures causing more health issues than they provide? Is tubal ligAtion/vasectomy a better option performed by most vets now? These pups have battled giardia/cocidia since we got them at 8 weeks. No other health issues. Born May 27, 2015. Have current shots. The research seems to be more about larger breeds having issues with spay nueter before 6 months. These pups are beloved family members & I want the best. Live in Salt Lake City, UT currently. Will be relocating to Seattle, WA in spring 2016. I'm 61 years old & retired. Live with my daughter who is a NICU nurse.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Rebecca replied 1 year ago.

Hello, Thanks for your question. You have discovered that this is a question with no one best answer, there are pros and cons on both sides.

My name is***** am a veterinarian and will do my best to help. There are few vets doing vasectomies, and even fewer if any doing tubal ligations. There is a still a risk of pregnancy with a tubal ligation, just as in people, and the dog will still go into heat, attracting males, dripping blood for 3 weeks, and at risk for mammary cancer which is not seen in dogs that are spayed when young.

Expert:  Rebecca replied 1 year ago.

This is contoversial, and there is not much research done on the subject, and the more you read the mor confused you will be. There are some types of cancer that is believed to be more common in dogs that are spay/neutered young (prostate cancer in males especially; it is rare but seen mostly in neutered males) yet we do know spaying youmg prevents mammary cancer. There is suspicion that we see less orthopedic diseases in dogs that are not spayed or neutered but that is more in the large breeds than yours. There may be a a link with hormonal disorders if we spay and neuter young.

However, no doubt that spaying and neutering prevents unwanted litters of puppies, and areas where spaying and neutering are done widely sees a far smaller population of unwanted puppies at the local shelter or dumped on farms and roadways.

Expert:  Rebecca replied 1 year ago.

All I can tell you is what I would do. I can't stand having a dog in heat, three weeks of dripping blood and male dogs in my yard was enough the one time I did it. My present dog was spayed at 10 months, because her breed tends not to go into heat until a year of age or older. If I had a male puppy, I might wait until he was a year or so, unless he started lifting his leg in the house, and then I would not wait another minute (urine marking in the house is a very good reason not to do a vasectomy!).

Expert:  Rebecca replied 1 year ago.

So, not a quick and easy one line answer for this question! Let me know what other questions you have. Rebecca

Expert:  Rebecca replied 1 year ago.

I hope you see may answer. Can I help with anything else?

Expert:  Rebecca replied 1 year ago.
Hi Jana,
I'm just following up on our conversation about Roca & Renly. How is everything going?