Neutering Confusion - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 08:24 AM Thread Starter
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Neutering Confusion

Hi There!

My sister (A vet) suggested I neuter our 9 week old GS Puppy at 6 months, as soon as he can lift his leg, but the breeder (A well respected breeder and the president of the South Island GSD Club), is adamant no earlier than 12 months old.

Both are sources I trust, I don't want to stunt my Dogs growth and we want him to be capable of protecting my family when I am not at home, but we are reluctant to put up with un-neutered behaviors.

Information or advice would be appreciated.
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post #2 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 08:33 AM
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Re: Neutering Confusion

I personally would try not to neuter a dog before he's 18 to 24 months of age.

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post #3 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 08:40 AM
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Re: Neutering Confusion

I agree with Gayle, you don't want to neuter a male before than so that they grow to the size a male is supose to get. I would wait until they get to at least 18 months before you neuter them. A female is different.
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post #4 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 08:41 AM
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Re: Neutering Confusion

Oh boy you are going to get both answers here too... I was forced to have Jesse neutered at 6 months by shelter and daycare. , oh well we have seen some good changes since then, ie he doesn't hump every dog anymore, he is more devoted and loving to us. I still believe that he will still protect me if I am in any danger at home or else where. Just as an example he is good with people and dogs and all living things, but god help you if you come into my house when I am sleeping. My husband came home from work late quietly and Jesse was sleeping with me on the bed and I didn't hear him but woke up to Jesse on top of me, hair up and growling and barking toward the bedroom door and didn't stop till my husband identified himself. Jesse at 6 months was ready to give his life for me.

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post #5 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 08:59 AM
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Re: Neutering Confusion

You won't stunt his growth by neutering as early neutering makes a dog slightly taller (by as much as half an inch) than neutering later, rather than shorter. Has to do with when the horomones close the long bones.

Is it in your contract from your breeder? If it stipulates you need to wait, that might settle the issue.

The main difference around here we notice with early neutering versus later is marking.


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post #6 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 09:07 AM
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Re: Neutering Confusion

Hormones are an important part of proper mental and physical development, not just reproduction. Therefore, I am of the opinion it is always best to allow the dog to go through puberty and fully mature before neutering. That means no earlier than18-24 months old.


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post #7 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 09:14 AM
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Re: Neutering Confusion

I think it depends on you and your dog. I think it depends on what kind of leader you are and how dominate your dog is towards people.

I have a 15 month old intact male and I have no behavior problems. He does not mark in the house. He doesn't really even mark outside on walks. He tried to pull to trees and all things vertical at first, but I decided we were walking and I wasn't going to allow 14 pee breaks on our walks so I don't stop anymore and neither does he. There is no humping. I don't allow it. It's bad manners and should be treated as such. When we meet other dogs, I ask him to sit or platz and the command is to be held. I don't have to worry about roaming, because he's never loose without me. He is starting to be more interested in females in heat, but we don't encounter those very often, so it's not a huge deal. I find as he gets older, he doesn't always get along with all dogs. He is not dog aggessive and does well with my friends dogs, but definitely not taking him to a dog park anytime soon. He seems to attract trouble, but he never starts it. His high prey drive can also be troublesome with small dogs that run and dart quickly (but this would be in him regardless).

I don't think protectiveness has much of anything to do with neutering vs. intact. There are plenty of neutered dogs that will bark when something strange is going on. As to whether or not you dog will confront an intruder has more to do with your dog's personality I think. So far, my guy will let just about anyone in the house without any real concern (maintenance men, friends, family etc). But he still has some maturing to do, so we'll see.

I think if you can wait, you should. I understand vets who want to neuter early. It certainly controls the pet population and stops accidents if you are not always with youur dog or expect to let him loose. I don't think it really changes personality/behavior apart from the peeing and the females.

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post #8 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 10:58 AM
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Re: Neutering Confusion

Good points on all the posts.

I agree about not neutering before a year, whether it is male or female. The hormones aid the growth plates and help the dog develop.

I have had males neutered at 6 months and at 9 months. My current male pup is a year old. I see no difference in behavior, no male related issues at all. The hormones have no relation to his ability to protect you. My neutered males have been just as protective as the intact male is.

I think the vets are just taught that early neuter equals fewer "oops" litters and they endorse it for that reason. You can still respect your vet and disagree with his/her stand on this.

My contract requires me to wait until 12 months to neuter Havoc. My vet suggested 6 months also. I highly respect her and I simply explained to her that I was obligated under contract to wait a year and that I had no issue with him being intact. She never mentioned it again. I am neutering him in a few weeks, he will be just short of 13 months.

You can explain to your vet what your stance is on this and that you do intend to neuter at a later time and if they are a good vet they will respect that.

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post #9 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 11:38 AM
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Re: Neutering Confusion

Don't forget too that some lines take it seems for-e-ver to mature. I have an 18 month old Czech male who's response to a stranger in the evelator grabbing and squooooshing his muzzle into ameoba-like shapes with black leather gloved hands, was to lower his ears and try to kiss around his muzzle being squooshed. That's a puppy response. No marking indoors, not even any marking on walks yet. His whole vibe is pure "puppy" still. These are just his lines, they mature very late.

Know the lines your dog comes from, to give you an idea when you would neuter, if you do choose to neuter.

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post #10 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 12:19 PM
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Re: Neutering Confusion

Chris Zink, the well-known canine structure expert, spoke at length on this topic when she was here last summer - my vet was more on the side of earlier S/N, but Chris convinced her otherwise during the seminar.

For a thorough, excellent review of the topic, check out the National Animal Interest Alliance website (www.naiaonline.org) - their home page has a link to a PDF on the long-term health risks of early spay/neuter.

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