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Neutering a bitch: when is the right time?


Have you weighed up the pros and cons and decided to have your dog neutered? Then it is time to determine the right time for the intervention. It is crucial for the development of the four-legged friend. Have the dog neutered: The right time is important - Shutterstock / Shooty Photography

Before you have your dog neutered, you should carefully consider when the procedure should take place. The age of the animal and the time of the cycle are decisive. If the dog is still very young and was not yet in heat, the castration can possibly already be carried out now (early castration). Otherwise, it is important to adjust the right time according to the heat.

Important: This guide does not replace veterinary advice.

Early castration of the bitch before the first heat

Bitches are usually in heat for the first time between the sixth and twelfth month of life. With large dog breeds, the first heat can start later. If you have opted for early castration, the procedure should be carried out at a time when the hormone level is as low as possible. As a rule, this is between the fourth and eighth month, i.e. with a sufficient distance from the first heat. This is important because with high hormonal activity, the organs are more supplied with blood, which increases the risk of complications during the operation.

One advantage of early castration in bitches is that it reduces the risk of breast cancer. However, some experts write that the pre-sexual intervention can cause problems in the social behavior of the animals. A bitch matures through the first heat, almost grows up - this important step would be omitted in the case of early castration in the development of the animal. Get good advice from the vet. You can find more on this topic in the guide: "Early castration in dogs: benefits and risks".

Castration of the bitch: pros and cons

The castration of the bitch is almost a matter of belief for many dog ​​owners: The opinions ...

Castration after the first heat

Many dog ​​owners therefore decide to let their bitch run once and thus wait for sexual maturity. This development phase generally lasts longer for large dog breeds than for small ones. In turn, late castration is associated with a higher risk of incontinence because the intervention changes the position of the bladder. In any case, you should wait at least two months after the first heat for the procedure until your bitch's hormone level has returned to normal levels and a possible sham pregnancy has been overcome.

Ideally, castration takes place in the phase of sexual rest between the rituals, in the so-called anestrus, which begins about eight to ten weeks after the rash and lasts up to five months. The veterinarian is available to advise you on the exact determination of the right time. He will also weigh up the advantages and disadvantages of early or later castration with you.