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my vet recommends 6 month or before their first heat cycle, which is not usually before then :)
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thank you! I have heard conflicting information from various breeders regarding the topic and how too soon can impact their development.

I think my vet would concur with 6 months and that to me doesn't seem too soon, thank you.
 

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you are welcome, I am not an expert, that is why I said my vet. If you are not in a hurry, I really don't think it matters

If it where a male I would definitely wait until 18-19 months and let the hormones help him develope all those wonderful male attributes.

But in my females, I have not noticed it hurting them.

I tell my puppy buyers, there are lots of opinions and written words out there. Read and listen to everything and than take what works the best for you and is fair to you and the dog. No two dogs or people or combination is ever the same :)

Kiss the fur child
 

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You might discuss Ovariectomy rather than Ovariohysterectomy with your vet as OE has several advantages:

Making a Rational Choice Between Ovariectomy and Ovariohysterectomy in the Dog: A Discussion of the Benefits of Either Technique

BART VAN GOETHEM, DVM 1 , AUKE SCHAEFERS-OKKENS, DVM, PhD, Diplomate ECAR 1 , and JOLLE KIRPENSTEIJN, DVM, PhD, Diplomate ACVS & ECVS 1
1 From the Department of Clinical Sciences of Companion Animals, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Utrecht University, Utrecht, The Netherlands

Conclusions—OVH is technically more complicated, time consuming, and is probably associated with greater morbidity (larger incision, more intraoperative trauma, increased discomfort) compared with OVE. No significant differences between techniques were observed for incidence of long-term urogenital problems, including endometritis/pyometra and urinary incontinence, making OVE the preferred method of gonadectomy in the healthy bitch.


The American version


A Spaying Dilemma: Laparoscopic Ovariectomy as an Alternative to a Traditional Ovariohysterectomy

http://dspace.library.cornell.edu:8080/bitstream/1813/12786/1/Collins%20seminar.pdf


A fun little on-topic blog

http://blogs.dogtime.com/dolittler-blog/...rinary-medicine

Unfortunately both OE & OVH affect bone growth/density with bone loss ocurring as estrogen levels disappear; a calcium deficient diet should be avoided.



One of the overriding concerns given for determining "when to spay" is the oft quoted risk of mammary neoplasms:
A beautifully presented article appears in the Irish Veterinary Journal (January 2009) Mammary tumours in dogs

The earliest study to recognise an increased risk of mammary neoplasia associated with remaining sexually entire was performed by Schneider et al. in 1969. This study yielded data that indicated that the relative risk of mammary neoplasia development was as low as 0.5% for bitches undergoing ovariohysterectomy before their first oestrus when compared to bitches that remained entire. While the original data from 1969 have not been superseded, it must be stated that the conclusions drawn are based upon remarkably few cases from the younger neutering age groups, as shown in Table 3. This study has led to early neutering practices in many countries, in particular the USA where it is commonplace to per form neutering surgery as early as 12 weeks of age.

Table 3: <u>Age of neutering and relative risk of the development of mammary neoplasia in the bitch compared to intact individuals and number of cases from which statistics are derived.</u> From Schneider et al. (1969)
Age at neutering Relative risk of mammary neoplasia <span style="color: #FF0000">n</span>
Before 1st season 0.5% <span style="color: #FF0000">n=1</span>
Between 1st and 2nd seasons 8% <span style="color: #FF0000">n=3</span>
2 or more seasons 26% <span style="color: #FF0000">n=20</span>
2 or more seasons but <30months old 6% <span style="color: #FF0000">n=2</span>
2 or more seasons but >29 months old 40% <span style="color: #FF0000">n=18</span>

<span style="color: #FF0000">n: number of corresponding cases in study from which statistic is derived</span>


No wonder so many subsequent articles which list the percentages (but not the n number) also go on to state that the risk is very low if bitches are spayed before 30 months.

There are a number of other risk factors which increase in spayed females eg, cardiac tumours, osteosarcoma, bladder and urethral tumors, hypothyroidism, acute pancreatitis, urinary incontinence ... (this is not meant to be a comprehensive list - if you wish references, most have been discussed in earlier threads on this topic) BUT mammary tumours are the most common tumour in female dogs:

In entire bitches, the ratio of benign:malignant tumours is approximately 50:50. Neutering, however, appears to preferentially reduce the incidence of benign mammary neoplasia. Therefore, while the overall incidence of mammary cancer is considerably less in neutered bitches, the likelihood of malignancy is greater than 50 per cent.

The right time to spay YOUR dog is something you should discuss with your vet, taking into consideration the breed of the dog & your ability/desire to manage your dog through heat cycles; it is much better to spay early than have an accidental litter (you <u>can</u> choose to do a spay~abortion: this should be done as early as possible)
 

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That is not the only study on spaying and mammary cancer. I can't believe that article is even trying to suggest that it is because, yeah, that's not a lot of dogs. However, the mammary cancer/spay connection is quite real.

I haven't read the OVH/OVE study yet but I'm guessing the advantages of OVE versus OVH are limited to laproscopic surgery. I've watched a lot of these surgeries done conventionally, and the removal of the uterus is not going to take much more time or require a larger incision than just the removal of the ovaries.
 

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My personal preference is for a bitch to have at least one heat before having her spayed.
 

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Another thing to consider that females in heat try to run off and the danger of unwanted pregnancy can be enough motivation for spay.
 

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I've never had a girl try to run off BUT I always leash walk them in a fenced in yard so maybe that's why I've never had a problem.
 

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Of course it's not the only study BUT it is the one which is referenced EVERY TIME spaying prior to first heat is recommended (standard disclaimer: in every paper I've read on the topic) - you must recognise the 0.5%, 26% & 40% numbers as you've often listed them yourself (which you would, if you've read the papers ...).

Quote: I can't believe that article is even trying to suggest that it is because
If you read the Irish Veterinary article you would realize that it is NOT in anyway implying this (but it is peer directed article concentrating on the diagnosis/prognosis of canine mammary neoplasia with a strict word limit)

One main advantage of OVE vs OVH (among others) is the lack of uterine stump & compications arising out of ligation issues (including ureter ligation) & later development of infection (eg, pyometria) & neoplasia: vets in Europe have been routinely performing OVE since the early 80's - this is not a recent innovation.

You are correct, a main benefit of OVE is the laparascopic aspect & this is what American & Canadian vets are not trained in, it is a challenge with 2 hours oft quoted as the time for a 'first' laparascopic OVE (as performed by a veterinarian already trained in OVH) - if it's done conventionally, the veterinarian has chosen not to learn the proper technique ie post surgery comfort/recovery was a major consideration when developing OVE.

Do read the blog though & it's "next article" as it touches on the political ramifications of challenging The Establishment in veterinary america - & it's all done with a bit of gentle humour.
 

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I have never had a girl try and run off when in heat........... but I also have a fenced yard, but they do not try and dog out or jump out either
 

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If you are a person for whom containment is a issue (whether it's males in or females out), then you simply should NOT wait to spay.
 
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