Buying or adopting a dog is almost as important as having a baby. Actually, for many people who do not have children, it is even one of the most important decisions of their lives.
A dog, regardless of breed, brings with it many responsibilities, including feeding, caring for, educating, exercising, etc. However, there are many other things that we must take into account when having an animal of this type, and one of them is castration or sterilization.
If you’ve brought a new Chow Chow home, you may be wondering if and when you really should neuter it. That is because there are many experts who do not recommend carrying out these surgical procedures on dogs, while others affirm that neutering or spaying our pet provides many benefits.
Due to this controversy, we will explain everything related to these surgeries throughout this article, and we will indicate their advantages and disadvantages.
It is very important to know about this topic since having a Chow Chow is not only to hug and caress it but also to provide it with a good quality of life.
Understanding Neutering and Spaying
Many people tend to get confused using these two terms, so it is important to clarify them before continuing. You have to understand that the difference between these two terms is related to the gender of the animal.
Neutering can refer to the removal of both the ovaries and uterus of females and the testicles of males but is generally used in the latter case. Spaying is commonly referenced to females.
You have to know that carrying out these surgical procedures on your Chow Chow means that it will not be able to reproduce, which is unfortunate, and that is why we must think carefully since it is not an easy decision to make.
At What Age Should I Neuter My Chow Chow?
There is no clear answer to this question. Many vets can recommend different ages, but the most common is 6 months of age.
Why? It is said that during World War II, dogs were subjected to these surgical procedures at 6 months, which was the moment when many of them began to mature, and the females had their first heat.
Another reason was that the techniques used at that time to carry out the surgery were not as modern as those of today, so the animal was required to be 6 months old.
However, other studies have stated that it is possible and even recommended to castrate Chow Chows at 8 weeks of age as the benefits are greater. For that reason, many animal shelters choose to spay or neuter these dogs during that age.
In short, you can neuter your Chow Chow after 8 weeks of age, although many people recommend these surgeries at 6 months of age if the Chow Chow’s parents or grandparents suffered from hip dysplasia.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Neutering Chow Chows
Many people believe that neutering a Chow Chow is dangerous, but the benefits are actually much greater than the risks. In general terms, this surgical procedure helps not only prevent some health problems and diseases in these dogs but also helps them maintain a happier life in every way.
Advantages of Neutering Chow Chows
- It improves the behaviour of the Chow Chow.
- It helps prevent breast and uterine cancer in female Chow Chows and testicular cancer in males.
- It increases the life expectancy of these dogs.
- It helps save the lives of many Chow Chow puppies.
- It keeps these dogs calm during the mating period.
- It prevents the Chow Chow from escaping to find a mate.
Disadvantages of Neutering Chow Chows
- The Chow Chow will not be able to reproduce.
- This canine will be more likely to gain weight (This can be controlled through a balanced diet and daily exercise).
- Neutering increases the risk of other tumours and can increase the possibility of other types of cancer such as Hemangiosarcoma or bone cancer.
What Should Be Taken into Account Before Undergoing This Surgical Procedure on My Chow Chow?
Before spaying or neutering your Chow Chow it is important to take it to a veterinarian for a complete check-up and physical exam to rule out any problems.
If everything is fine, there will be no impediment for your dog from undergoing this surgery, but if the vet detects something wrong, then the procedure will have to be postponed for another time.
Why is it important that our Chow Chow is healthy? This surgery is performed under general anaesthesia, which can be dangerous for your dog if it has any health problems.
When it comes time to spay or neuter a Chow Chow, the vet will usually give the Chow a premedication injection prior to general anaesthesia.
Such an injection is helpful not only in relieving pain but also in keeping it calm. At all times, the Chow Chow will be monitored to avoid any unexpected and unwanted incidents. That includes monitoring:
- Body temperature
- Heart rate
- Breathing frequency
- Blood pressure
When the surgery begins, the specialist will shave the Chow Chow’s fur around the area where the incision will be made. Once the surgeon has removed the testicles (in males) or the uterus and ovaries (in females), he will proceed to suture the area.
After that, the Chow Chow will stay in the clinic for a few hours while it is monitored to make sure everything is okay, and then you can take it home and come back a few days later for another check-up.
What Steps Should I Take to Care For My Chow Chow After Surgery?
The first thing you should know is that there is no fixed time for the recovery of the Chow Chow. Everything will depend on its body since some may be fine the next day or two days, but others may take longer.
Regardless of that, it is important to take certain steps to care for your dog during its recovery:
- Don’t feed it heavy food. Anaesthesia makes the Chow Chow’s stomach more sensitive, so it is preferable to feed it soft and healthy food. Also, keep in mind that after surgery, your dog may not have much of an appetite.
- Keep it warm for hours after surgery.
- Prevent your Chow Chow from licking its wound. It is common for dogs to try to lick the area where the incision was made as it tends to itch and be uncomfortable for them.
- Keep your Chow Chow indoors all week without providing any exercise, as this will increase the risk of the stitches coming loose, causing the wound to open.
- If you notice that your dog is in more pain than he should, don’t hesitate to take it to the vet.
Is It Dangerous to Neuter or Spay Your Chow Chow?
These surgical procedures are usually not dangerous as long as they are not performed on Chow Chows under 8 weeks of age.
They are not painful either since they are procedures performed under general anaesthesia, so the canine will not feel anything.
Is It Expensive to Neuter My Chow Chow?
Absolutely not! Most veterinary clinics typically charge little for this type of surgery. Therefore, if you decide to neuter your Chow Chow, you should not worry too much about the financial aspect.