Best age to neuter, if at all? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-16-2016, 11:20 PM Thread Starter
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Best age to neuter, if at all?

I have a 12 week old male GSD and the original plan was to neuter him at the age of 6 months.

However, after doing some further research I've heard that early neutering will result in a more lanky, less defined dog with no secondary sex traits. I've also read that neutering as a whole decreases their drive and willingness to work.

Should I wait until 2 years for him to fill out? Should I neuter at all? I have no plans to breed him and he is an inside dog so roaming is not an issue. Will later neutering encourage unwanted behaviors such as excessive marking, humping, urine licking etc?

Thank you!~
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-17-2016, 12:06 AM
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I never thought that I would own an un-neutered male - I was of the belief that intact males became uncontrollable. That is until I started with an IPO club, and I was amazed at how well behaved, well trained, responsive and sweet and friendly the dogs were, none of them neutered. It really opened my eyes that a lot of the behaviours we attribute to a dog being intact are really just management and training issues.

So here I am with a 7 year old, still intact, and the best, easiest, more obedient dog I ever had! Who would have thunk it?

Not letting the dog roam is just an issue of responsible ownership; roaming has nothing to do with being neutered or not, and you have that area covered. Humping and marking are training issues. I don't know about Urine liking - Gryffon is a urine licker - dogs do this to take in more scent. I know some people don't allow their dogs to lick urine to prevent illness, so that would come down to training, supervision, and management. Since you won't be letting your dog roam around unsupervised, it should be manageable. And not all dogs lick urine, so it may not be an issue at all.
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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-17-2016, 12:16 AM
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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-17-2016, 12:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Castlemaid View Post
I never thought that I would own an un-neutered male - I was of the belief that intact males became uncontrollable. That is until I started with an IPO club, and I was amazed at how well behaved, well trained, responsive and sweet and friendly the dogs were, none of them neutered. It really opened my eyes that a lot of the behaviours we attribute to a dog being intact are really just management and training issues.

So here I am with a 7 year old, still intact, and the best, easiest, more obedient dog I ever had! Who would have thunk it?

Not letting the dog roam is just an issue of responsible ownership; roaming has nothing to do with being neutered or not, and you have that area covered. Humping and marking are training issues. I don't know about Urine liking - Gryffon is a urine licker - dogs do this to take in more scent. I know some people don't allow their dogs to lick urine to prevent illness, so that would come down to training, supervision, and management. Since you won't be letting your dog roam around unsupervised, it should be manageable. And not all dogs lick urine, so it may not be an issue at all.
My dog has a narcotics detection background from his maternal grandfather. He routinely licks urine. I am in a high lepto area, so I make sure he gets a lepto shot in the summer. The worst time of year for lepto is in the fall.

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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-17-2016, 01:35 AM
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Personally, I would choose not to neuter. If I did, it would not be before 2 years.
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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-17-2016, 01:59 AM
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I choose to keep my dogs intact. Primarily because of the lower cancer and injury risks associated with keeping the endocrine system fully functional. Not to mention the decreased risk of anxiety based behavioral problems and age related cognitive impairment.

I will concede that testosterone may increase the likelihood of undesirable behaviors, however I have never found it to be all that difficult to train or manage said behaviors.

Overall I actually find intact males the easiest to train. I like working with highly motivated driven dogs. My intact boys have tended to engage with me better, they don't shut down when frustrated, and have been the easiest to move from food rewards to toy and play based rewards.

They just fit my style best, but each to their own in that regard.
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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-17-2016, 04:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MinkFrost View Post
I have a 12 week old male GSD and the original plan was to neuter him at the age of 6 months.

However, after doing some further research I've heard that early neutering will result in a more lanky, less defined dog with no secondary sex traits. I've also read that neutering as a whole decreases their drive and willingness to work.

Should I wait until 2 years for him to fill out? Should I neuter at all? I have no plans to breed him and he is an inside dog so roaming is not an issue. Will later neutering encourage unwanted behaviors such as excessive marking, humping, urine licking etc?

Thank you!~
I have met many owners throughout the years who have never neutered their dog, and they had no issues, none of the aggression issues people claim if the dog is unfixed or any of that, none of them humping things either.. Only one of the dogs had an issue because he was left unfixed, and that was, when you took him on a walk, he'd mark every pole, and or, bench, anything, literally, over and over, fixing him didn't fix that issue either. I do admit though, some did say their dog would hump things, but this was when they were puppies around 10 weeks, and that was twice, getting up and walking away completely stopped the behavior.

I think it honestly comes down to how responsible the owner is, if you know your dog inside out, and he's not 'uncontrollable' or any of that, than why fix your dog? You're killing prey drive and increasing other risks really, so where do you benefit? Plus if you know your dog inside out, and are responsible, than you are perfectly capable of having an intact male.

The only issue with having an intact male is, people who are irresponsible with their dogs, the type that brings their dog to a dog park literally every single day, and watch their dog attack yours, are the one's you need to watch out for, because they'll instantly ask you; "Is he fixed....?" If you answer; "No, he's not..." Than, that person's excuse is; "Oh, Lassie over here isn't good with unfixed males."

Other than that, I say leave it alone, never fix a pup at 6 months, ever, go through at least 1 - 2 years before when the dog is mature, if you are having so much difficulty with your dog, than I recommend getting your dog fixed. But, I think it's safe to say, owning an intact male is completely fine (in my opinion that is.)

It's funny because people gasp at the thought of a dog being unfixed, yet, cat owners suffer worse issues, my friend has a female cat and she constantly screams (she's not fixed.) Makes you happy that you're a dog owner

Anyways, just an opinion of mine, I say wait it out, never do anything like that when they're young because the negatives show up later rather than positives, plus, at 2 years old you'll know if your dogs prey drive is too much for you, you'll know if he has anything that will be improved IF you get him fixed, etc. You'll know your dog inside and out than, therefore you'll make the right decision rather than fixing a 6 month old and regretting it.
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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-17-2016, 04:04 AM
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I would definitely wait until he is done growing, around 2 years. All of the reading I've done says it's so much better for their health. As much as I would want to keep my dog intact forever, I will eventually get him neutered (or maybe sterilized) after 2 years. While I make sure he doesn't roam, other dogs in my neighborhood do, and I worry that if an in-heat female roams near my house, he will get out of the yard (he is a very determined boy when he wants to be) and I don't want to lose him or contribute to the dog population. I also think he is less likely to be stolen for breeding if he is neutered.
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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-17-2016, 05:21 AM
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Originally Posted by SadTales View Post
I have met many owners throughout the years who have never neutered their dog, and they had no issues, none of the aggression issues people claim if the dog is unfixed or any of that, none of them humping things either.. Only one of the dogs had an issue because he was left unfixed, and that was, when you took him on a walk, he'd mark every pole, and or, bench, anything, literally, over and over, fixing him didn't fix that issue either. I do admit though, some did say their dog would hump things, but this was when they were puppies around 10 weeks, and that was twice, getting up and walking away completely stopped the behavior.

I think it honestly comes down to how responsible the owner is, if you know your dog inside out, and he's not 'uncontrollable' or any of that, than why fix your dog? You're killing prey drive and increasing other risks really, so where do you benefit? Plus if you know your dog inside out, and are responsible, than you are perfectly capable of having an intact male.

The only issue with having an intact male is, people who are irresponsible with their dogs, the type that brings their dog to a dog park literally every single day, and watch their dog attack yours, are the one's you need to watch out for, because they'll instantly ask you; "Is he fixed....?" If you answer; "No, he's not..." Than, that person's excuse is; "Oh, Lassie over here isn't good with unfixed males."

Other than that, I say leave it alone, never fix a pup at 6 months, ever, go through at least 1 - 2 years before when the dog is mature, if you are having so much difficulty with your dog, than I recommend getting your dog fixed. But, I think it's safe to say, owning an intact male is completely fine (in my opinion that is.)

It's funny because people gasp at the thought of a dog being unfixed, yet, cat owners suffer worse issues, my friend has a female cat and she constantly screams (she's not fixed.) Makes you happy that you're a dog owner

Anyways, just an opinion of mine, I say wait it out, never do anything like that when they're young because the negatives show up later rather than positives, plus, at 2 years old you'll know if your dogs prey drive is too much for you, you'll know if he has anything that will be improved IF you get him fixed, etc. You'll know your dog inside and out than, therefore you'll make the right decision rather than fixing a 6 month old and regretting it.
What about prostate problems in intact senior males? I've seen that, which is awful and completely avoidable. The poor dog then has to be neutered when he's in poor condition for surgery.
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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-17-2016, 07:29 AM
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What about prostate problems in intact senior males? I've seen that, which is awful and completely avoidable. The poor dog then has to be neutered when he's in poor condition for surgery.
Bladder and Prostate Cancer: Neutering Male Dogs Increases Risk - Dog Cancer Blog

A population study of neutering status as a risk factor for canine prostate cancer. - PubMed - NCBI
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