Why desex your dog or cat?

Domestic Animal Services require all cats to be desexed by 3 months of age, and all dogs by 6 months of age. Exemptions may be granted based on application for a permit to keep a sexually intact animal. Apart from being a requirement to keep a dog or cat in the ACT there are significant benefits to desexing. In females, unwanted pregnancies are prevented. Certain diseases such as mammary (breast) cancer and serious uterine infections are prevented.  In males, it reduces the tendency to fight, wander, escape out of the yard, and mark out territory with urine.  Desexing also protects males against prostate cancer and various hormone dependant testicular tumours.

Why desex your dog or cat at Inner South Veterinary Centre?

Desexing is usually the first (and only) operation that many dogs and cats will ever have. They are still very young and this can be a time of major worry for the pet owner. While desexing is considered ‘routine surgery’ it is still surgery and should be taken seriously.

To help with those worries, we take an incredible amount of care. Your pets first surgery is so much more than just a routine procedure to us.

Here’s how: –

  • The surgery is done as a day stay; we like to get them home to their family as soon as possible. Your pet will need to miss their morning meal on the day of surgery.
  • Prior to the procedure they will have a full veterinary examination and health check.
  • A pre- surgical sedative means they will be calm and settled throughout the whole day. This also provides pain relief right from the very start.
  • We use only the state of the art anaesthetics and a fully equipped surgical theatre. Many of these drugs and much of the equipment is just what you would find in a human hospital.
  • Each animal has a dedicated veterinary nurse who stays with them from the moment they go to sleep right until they are awake and sitting up. They have continuous monitoring using advanced equipment. Each and every breath and heart beat is followed closely.
  • The surgery is done with human hospital quality suture materials.
  • The final layer of stitches is hidden under the skin and will dissolve over time. This means that there are no stitches that they can lick or chew at, and there are no stitches to be taken out. They are just so much more comfortable!
  • Pain relief is given before and after surgery, and often to go home with.
  • We call or SMS to let you know that all has gone well and the operation is OVER! We know that you want to know that they are OK!
  • A pick-up appointment allows the vet or nurse to fully explain the procedure and postoperative care for the next few days.
  • Postoperative rechecks are all included, taking away all the worry.

As desexing is compulsory in the ACT, all animals are given a desexing tattoo inside the left ear while under the anaesthetic.

Frequently Asked Questions about desexing:

Will my pets personality change?

No, your pet has a unique personality and all those quirks you have come to love are a part of them, not their hormones. They will still be exactly who they used to be after surgery. They will just no longer be concerned with the opposite sex and won’t express behaviours motivated by sexual hormones.

Will my pet gain weight?

Desexed animals may be at increased risk of weight gain. However, this is not a reason to avoid desexing! This can be easily managed by feeding an appropriate amount of food to your pet and ensuring they get sufficient exercise.

I have a giant breed dog. Should I wait till they are older to have them desexed?

There is a school of thought that a dog should grow to skeletal maturity before desexing as this may reduce the risk of some knee injuries and some bone cancers. The jury is out on this one but if you do have a giant breed dog, discuss the timing of desexing with your veterinarian.

Does my female dog or cat need to have a season first?

No, your pet does not need to have a season or a litter to reach full physical or emotional development. Desexing prior to their first season is medically sound. Desexing by 6 months is also compulsory in the ACT unless a permit is otherwise granted by Domestic Animal Services.

Dogs & Cats


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