As a responsible pet-owner, one of the most important decisions you can make is to spay or neuter your pet. Spaying and neutering are the medical procedures for removing ovaries, uterus and testes to sterilize an animal. It is a safe and effective way to prevent your pet from reproducing and has many benefits for you, your pet, and your community.
- Your pets will live a longer, healthier life!
Studies have shown that sterilized pets live up to 23% longer than if left intact. Spaying your female pet can help prevent uterine infections and breast cancer. In males, neutering reduces the likelihood of testicular cancer and injuries that occur when they get in fights with other males.
- Less behavioral problems
Female cats in heat meow more loudly and urinate more frequently in order to attract a mate. Spaying your female will prevent her from going into heat, saving your ears from the yowls and your sofas from the sprays. In addition, neutering your male will decrease the likelihood they will run away from home in search for a mate, and will reduce territorial urine-marking problems in the household.
- Cost effective
While a spay or neuter can be costly upfront, it is much cheaper than what you will spend raising a litter of puppies or kittens. The health and behavioral benefits can also mean fewer medical bills and less money spent replacing damaged furniture. Many animal welfare organizations offer low-cost procedures to reduce pet overpopulation in their communities.
- Help keep unwanted pets out of shelters
Recent estimates suggest that 6-8 million animals are placed in shelters each year resulting in millions of healthy cats and dogs being euthanized due to limited funds and shelter space. Accidental pregnancies can occur when pets roam free or escape their enclosures. Preventing unwanted pregnancies can reduce the tragedy of pet overpopulation.
- Protect wildlife
Keeping pet populations under control has added benefits for local wildlife. Unwanted pets in the wild have ecological consequences. Stray animals hunt wildlife for food, which impacts small bird and mammal mortality. In addition, uncared for pets carry diseases that can spill over into wildlife populations.
If you have a pet in need of spaying/neutering, the SPOT program through Brown County Humane Society offers low-cost surgery options. For more information, call the SPOT coordinator at (812) 703-0797 or visit https://www.bchumane.org/spayneuter/