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Discussion Starter #1
At what age did you(if applies) spay or neuter your GSD? We haven't really decided if we are going to do this with Emma (GSD), but Elle(GSD mix) has been, and it made her lazy, and a bit overweight. We were thinking of breeding Emma, but no decisions have been made...What are your thoughts on this? Suggestions welcomed.
 

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I prefer allowing a bitch to have at least one heat cycle before having her spayed. If I didn't get a vasectomy for a male, I'd get him neutered betweeen 18 to 24 months.
 

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Nope, getting the bitch spayed early only helps reduce the risk of breast cancer and getting a dog neutered early helps reduce the risk of testicular cancer (less than 1/2 of 1% of dogs will get this and it is relatively easy to cure -- good prognosis). However, what they fail to meantion is that spay and neuter early in bitches and dogs increases significantly the incidences of osteosarcoma, bone cancer, which has a terrible prognosis and is an awful way to die.

Neutering a dog before he stops growing, before the growth plates close can cause the long bones to continue to grow and can produce a leggy dog. Further there is a correlation between hip dysplasia and early spay/neuter.

I have eight dogs, none of them are spayed or neutered, though I expect to spay my older girl soon, as it does reduce the risk of pyrometra (spelling?). I would probably wait for both males and females until they were a minimum of 24 months before spay/neuter. Before I knew better, I neutered the pup I gave to my parents. I am hoping that he does not suffer any of the possible consequences. He is significantly taller than the rest of the pups in my litter, so that may have played a part.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Originally Posted By: MaraThe other side of that coin

http://www.caninesports.com/SpayNeuter.html

My Var is going to be neutered when he is 2 ish.

Also Dogs don't make themselves overweight.
I know that dogs don't make themselves overweight, but her being spay at 2mnths (not my doing, she's a humane society dog, and could do nothing about it) has made her very lazy, meaning she doesn't like excercize, and wants to lounge around a lot. Don't get me wrong, we do walk her and try to run her daily, but it's a fight to get her to do so, and I really don't understand why she's overweight, cause she is on a diet (has been), but she's still chunky. What do I do? She's on the diet her vet suggested. She is only 1 and a half years old. I'm talking about Elle (GSD mix), maybe it's in her genes IDK!? Besides being chunky & lazy, she is very healthy.
 

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When to spay/neuter also depends on your lifestyle with your dogs. Some people on this list would rather cut off their own arm before they let their dog(s) be unattended in the back yard for more than 5 min or let them interact with other dogs at a dog park. Other people commonly visit dog parks, etc.

Dealing with a adult, unaltered dog requires you to think about consequences that you don't have to think about with a altered dog. If you are prepared for that, great. If not, spay/neutering "early" might be the right choice (not super early of course, but perhaps earlier than 24 months).
 

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All of my female dogs have been spayed between 5 and 6 months. As far as I can tell it has had no adverse affects. My gsd lived to be almost 12 despite a zillion health problems (she had about every problem gsds get!) and Chama is 12.5. Both were extremely active throughout their lives.

I not positive when Basu was neutered but I think he was between 6 months and 1 year. One of his nicknames was humpty-dumpty because he would hump people or other dogs when he got overstimulated! He was also very reactive and protective of his space. And he was very "masculine" looking--I know some people are concerned about that.

If I adopted a dog that wasn't spayed or neutered I would still do it when they were young--between 6 months and a year. I haven't seen anything to convince me otherwise and plenty of things to convince me that it's a wise course of action!
 

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Both of mine were already altered, but if I had a female not for breeding or showing, I'd get her spayed ASAP and a male....I'd wait probably 2 years and then see.

Is it true that neutering males early can make them be taller and leggy? My male was neutered young and he is so tall and leggy! Also, he has never once lifted his leg. He never humps/mounts anything and doesn't even get "excited" like male dogs, neutered or intact. On one hand, I'm glad he was done so young because he hasn't seemed to have developed any sort of habits like marking or mounting, on the other hand, I wonder if that has contributed to his odd structure that will probably give us problems later on (the vet said we don't have to do x-rays yet because he doesn't show any signs of pain).
 

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Here is Basu who was neutered between 6 months and one year old. He humped, lifted his leg and stuck his thingie out far more than I ever wanted to see it!!!!!! His look is very typical of his lines--W. German.

I wish I had a picture of my brother's gsd mix for contrast. He was never neutered, never humped people or other dogs (unless it was a female in heat but that's another story) and he was tall and leggy---because that's what he looked like!!!!!!!!

 

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Discussion Starter #11
Originally Posted By: BowWowMeowHere is Basu who was neutered between 6 months and one year old. He humped, lifted his leg and stuck his thingie out far more than I ever wanted to see it!!!!!! His look is very typical of his lines--W. German.

I wish I had a picture of my brother's gsd mix for contrast. He was never neutered, never humped people or other dogs (unless it was a female in heat but that's another story) and he was tall and leggy---because that's what he looked like!!!!!!!!

Wow, he is tall and leggy, but he's beautiful!!! I think Emma(GSD, 5 months old) is going to be petite, because she doesn't seem to be growing really fast, but then again who knows, she might go into a growth spurt, I do know niether her father or mother was very big, but then again...Emma was rescued because of being under-fed, and when we picked her up, her sister had just passed away minutes before arriving. We had to drive 450 miles to bring her home, and then whole way home I was giving her milk every 15 minutes or so, I thought for sure she was going to die in my arms...She was so pitiful, but now, she's on her way to being very healthy, and active, and has a pretty good appetite...I felt so bad for her.
 

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Basu is the black and tan guy--neither tall, nor leggy. Very much a "classic" gsd. Shorter and stockier than the American lines. The dog whose face he is chomping is my former foster dog. He was probably 5 months old (Grommit, the former foster) when this was taken so that makes Basu look bigger than he really was).
 

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I think an important consideration would be what would Emma add to the world of the GSD? What are her lines, and in the future what do you plan to do to prove breedworthiness? Health checks, proof of temperament, etc. Those are some of the things to be thinking of with your decision. Not to mention I could swing through KY shelters and pick up a hundred great GSDs in a month or less. So that adds to the need for exceptional breeding and planning as a breeder in that region.

I also have 6 spayed females here and not one is overweight. Even my cobbier types are not.
 

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Originally Posted By: JeanKBBMMMAANI think an important consideration would be what would Emma add to the world of the GSD? What are her lines, and in the future what do you plan to do to prove breedworthiness? Health checks, proof of temperament, etc. Those are some of the things to be thinking of with your decision. Not to mention I could swing through KY shelters and pick up a hundred great GSDs in a month or less. So that adds to the need for exceptional breeding and planning as a breeder in that region.
Well said. Also, you mentioned Emma is a rescue. Rescue from where? If she was from a rescue organization, they (well any reputable one would) require the dog to be altered. Unless there is something completely exceptional about her (conformation, work ability, bloodlines..) she should not be bred. And even then, she would need to prove herself first. As they say in the horse world, good stallions make great geldings.
 

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Hi Jennifer,

What Jean said is very true:
Quote: Not to mention I could swing through KY shelters and pick up a hundred great GSDs in a month or less. So that adds to the need for exceptional breeding and planning as a breeder in that region.
(I have a beautiful dog to prove it! She's from Bowling Green and there were WAY too many dogs in that shelter when I rescued her.
)

If Emma is a rescue, I'd never even think of breeding her. The goal of breeding is to better "the dog" or breed line. Without a full knowledge of your dog (again, if she IS a rescue), how can that even be possible? My rescue--who is gorgeous--has 3 different autoimmune disorders! These did not manifest themselves until this past year and I've had her since 2003.

As far as spaying goes, we've always done it as son as was considered healthy by the vets--about 6 months.

Regarding your mix, I think that doggie needs an evaluation from a vet. The spaying should not be making her fat and/or lazy. There are many other possible health concerns and I think you need to have her checked out. Dogs don't express pain and illness like people do. They can be quite "quiet" about their problems as far as crying goes, but problems do show themselves in their behavior or lack of energy. I'd be astonished if your vet blamed an early spay without conducting any other tests.

Good luck with the doggies!
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Keeta was about a year old when I had her spayed. We do Schutzhund, so even spayed, she has the energy, stamina and strenght to be a working dog. If Emma is lazy, that could just be her temperament. I jokingly brag about how "buff" my girl is.

I do think that spaying at two months is too early, though I don't know what health effects that could have on a dog.

Are you feeding her weight-control kibble? To reduce the calories, these kibbles usually have a low-fat content, meaning that the fats are replaced by even more grains to make up the bulk. The high-amount of Carbs in these kibbles will often do the opposite, i.e., make the dog gain weight or keep them from loosing weight.

Has she been checked for her thyroid? Low thyroid function will cause fatigue.
 

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Spaying should not change the behavior of a bitch, at least, it should not make them less likely to perform well in schutzhund.

But there is plenty of evidence that early spay/neuter does correlate with cancer. So it is not for me.

Keeping your bitch intact does not mean that you have to have puppies.

Keeping your dog intact does not mean that you have to have puppies.

You may have to be a little more vigilent.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Originally Posted By: CastlemaidKeeta was about a year old when I had her spayed. We do Schutzhund, so even spayed, she has the energy, stamina and strenght to be a working dog. If Emma is lazy, that could just be her temperament. I jokingly brag about how "buff" my girl is.

I do think that spaying at two months is too early, though I don't know what health effects that could have on a dog.

Are you feeding her weight-control kibble? To reduce the calories, these kibbles usually have a low-fat content, meaning that the fats are replaced by even more grains to make up the bulk. The high-amount of Carbs in these kibbles will often do the opposite, i.e., make the dog gain weight or keep them from loosing weight.

Has she been checked for her thyroid? Low thyroid function will cause fatigue.
"If Emma is lazy, that could just be her temperament."

Emma(5 months) is not the one lazy, if anything she's hyper and a bit aggressive, but that's still the pup in her, and she is not the one on the diet from the vet, she's on a normal puppy diet so far, if anything she's still trying to play catch-up on puppy weight, but she's getting there, I think her teething is in the way of that as she just lost a big back tooth and 3 k-9 teeth. Elle is the one chuncky or as I call her 'my chunky monkey'. I am up for spaying her, it's Del who wants to breed her, that's why I added this post to the forum, cause I'm not certain it's something I want to do in the future.
 

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We had Gracie spayed at 8.5 months. She was having digestive issues and they thought they were going to have to do a "puppy colonoscopy" and I didn't want to put her under anesthesia more than once. Luckily, she didn't have to have the procedure but she did get spayed and have her HUGE umblicial herina repaired. I don't think it has changed her behavior one bit - she is super drivey, looks good, and is very happy. My only regret is now I am having second thoughts about showing her and I can't now.
 

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Originally Posted By: Jenniferky

I know that dogs don't make themselves overweight, but her being spay at 2mnths (not my doing, she's a humane society dog, and could do nothing about it) has made her very lazy, meaning she doesn't like excercize, and wants to lounge around a lot.
Spaying doesn't change personality.

I highly doubt it was the early spay that has made her a couch potato. That's just the way she is. Some dogs are more lazy than others. It's genetic personality, not spaying.
 
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