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VailGirl 04-29-2014 09:38 PM

Spaying Debate
hello, I am new to this site, came across while looking for info on when to spay. I have a 7 month old GS and am at a crossroads as to when to spay her. Everyone has a different opinion! I spayed both of my other 2 GS dogs around 6 months. Both died at the exact same age of 11.5 of the same cancer, sarcoma of the heart and spleen. My last one, died just about 1 year ago, May any case, she became incontinent as a young adult,, of which I've heard can be from spaying before the 1st heat. I've read many of the threads and found one where sarcomas later in life could be due to spaying to early. Has anyone else had this experience? Does anyone know where to find more specific facts on this topic? I would prefer not to have to deal with the heat cycle, but want to do what is best for my dog. My yard is fenced but not entirely dog-proof and I certainly don't want unexpected puppies! Her mom's 1st heat was at 10 months, so I'm hoping I have a little more time to figure this out! Leaving the country in 2 weeks for a vaca, so hoping this doesn't happen while I am gone!

gsdsar 04-29-2014 09:50 PM

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There is a retrospective study if Goldens that showed that dogs spayed/neutered early have a higher incidence of Hemangiosarcoma, bloat, Osteosarcoma and torn cruciate ligaments. It's a retrospective study, just looking at past cases brought into a referral clinic. So it's validity is questionable. But most vets are now saying, if possible it's best to wait until at least 1 year before sterilizing. Hormones do have a purpose.

But if you are unable to be positive that a mismating won't happen, spay your girl.

It comes down to personal life choices, preference and your families well being and ability to manage an intact animal.

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my boy diesel 04-29-2014 10:10 PM

it sounds like in your case it would be better to do it now than later
on the plus side many girls have had it before the first heat and have done fine immediately after (it is easier on their bodies to have it done pre-heat) and down the road

The Stig 04-30-2014 01:18 AM

I am with gsdsar, and to wait for her to mature before spaying her. However, if you are unsure of taking on the responsibility of an intact female, then by all means have her fixed. It is better than an unwanted pregnancy.

I spayed my female when she was 4 years old, and she was ready to get back on schedule by the second day, post surgery. When I purchased her, her breeder recommended to spay her after 18 months old. I had a GSD as a teenager, and she was spayed after her first heat w/o any complications either. She lived a healthy life, apart from poor hips in her old age.

However, every dog is different and to reiterate, it is a personal decision based on your lifestyle and responsibility to an intact dog.

Good luck,

MustLoveGSDs 04-30-2014 01:36 AM


This is a really informative article that you should find interesting.

middleofnowhere 04-30-2014 01:41 AM

I was apprehensive about managing an intact female -- but I've found it not that difficult. I am waiting until she's five or nearly five to spay. (the info I used is probably in the above link). If she didn't have awful false pregnancies, I would be waiting even longer to spay.

GSDkid 04-30-2014 09:22 AM

I'm very interested in this topic. Just posting so I can follow.

VailGirl 05-01-2014 03:00 PM

Thanks everyone for your comments. Still not sure what to do, but after talking to the vet, thinking of before the 1st heat. Question for you all though-has anyone experienced or come across comments about how aggression might be related to the hormonal cycle and spaying? Both my other dogs had huge aggression issues. If waiting to spay has any affect on aggression in a positive way, it would be well worth dealing with the cycle :-)

my boy diesel 05-01-2014 03:03 PM

there are some anecdotal things i think but i do not believe there is solid evidence to say one way or another

LaRen616 05-01-2014 03:07 PM

I would personally wait until she is at least 12 months old to spay, 18 months would be better though. JMO

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