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Looking after puppies and kittens is not only hard work, finding good homes with responsible people can also be difficult.

Here at Riverview Vets Cork we recommend neutering (spaying) bitches from the age of six months for the following reasons:

  • To prevent them from coming into season on average twice a year and the associated problems of having them trying to escape when in season to try to find male dogs.
  • To prevent them becoming pregnant with unwanted litters.
  • To prevent false pregnancies.
  • To prevent life threatening womb conditions (pyometra) occurring later in life.
  • To reduce the chances of developing mammary tumours in old age.

Generally, most bitches do not develop fully until she reaches six months of age, however different breeds can require longer to develop.

Sometimes a bitch can become slightly quieter after spaying and some can put on a little weight. We have found that the ones most at risk from the latter are ones that are already a little overweight before spaying. A diet before the operation may sometimes be needed.

Dogs If you are considering having your dog neutered, we would be pleased to discuss this with you. We usually recommend that your dog is at least six months old before castration, or at least cocking his leg to mark his territory.

Cats can usually be neutered any time after 5 and a half months of age. Neutering of male cats reduces wandering and risk of them becoming involved in road traffic accidents and cat fights with the risk of abscesses and life-threatening viral infections developing.

Female cats can produce several litters a year and are generally such good mothers their own health can suffer. Finding homes for their many kittens is also very challenging.

Rabbits of either sex can be neutered. Tumours of the womb are common in female rabbits later in life and spaying can help prevent these occurring.

Talk to us if you are looking for vets open today to assess the best way forward for you and your pet.