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Discussion Starter #1
Early of late... that's the question.

And in The Atlantic! :)

IMO, it's good to see the MSM get onto the subject finally. Simply to raise the issue with shelters and rescues. I never liked the idea of their policy of neutering large breeds as early as 6 months.

It's GOT to be a crucial growth phase for dogs.

https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2019/07/dog-neutering-health-risks-for-certain-breeds/594355/?utm_campaign=the-atlantic&utm_content=5d3a50d2ba8d0400013c6bfa_ta&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook&fbclid=IwAR3g3xzix3FW0gu-5NLaEb3AKqnBXNJqbkl46nlmCXgh9CstjD2pwDvJrC4
 

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Despite all of the issues, I have to say I'm still in favor of shelters spaying/neutering before dogs leave the shelter. If you live in a large city in California, like Los Angeles, you realize how out of control our pet population is. I don't want to risk any of the shelter dogs making more unwanted dogs.

On the other hand, for those of us responsible owners, yes, definitely wait until your dog is fully grown.
 

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I do not agree with early desexing whether it's in a shelter or not. My primary reason for feeling this way is that early desexing increases the very behavioral problems that are most likely to end that animal back in a shelter. Early neuter increases anxiety-induced behavior like separation anxiety and fear aggression. It's the primary reason that I won't consider adopting a puppy from a shelter. An older dog, yes, but not a puppy that has undergone pediatric spay or neuter. It's totally possible to surgically render animals infertile without removing the hormones they need to develop properly. So I do not see any excuse for it. I'm glad there's more and more talk about this for laypeople. I think our culture is really changing to try to do what's actually best for dogs, and it's going to bring a lot of changes in time.
 

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I do not agree with early spaying. One comment about spaying is that dogs become overweight because they don't get enough exercise and get too much food. The issue is early neutering versus later neutering and I don't like to hear/see one blanket statement about overweight dogs. Early neutering also affects the skeletal development. Normally, when a dog reaches puberty they stop or nearly stop growing tall and start growing widthwise- they fill out. If they don't get the hormones that say "Hey, you're not a baby anymore", they keep getting taller and do not broaden. So you see lanky dogs. Waiting to neuter allows the proper bone growth.

I understand the problem of people adopting puppies and never getting them fixed, but there are other ways to handle it. Some shelters give you a voucher that you can use at your vet's when the puppy is old enough. You and your vet get to decide when is old enough, but six months is better than 8 weeks.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Early neutering also affects the skeletal development. ..... Waiting to neuter allows the proper bone growth.
Specifically - by 6 months to a year, bones are not so much growing as in getting bigger, but they're 'knitting'... joining together at the plates.

Best to let that process continue naturally.
 

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I understand the problem of people adopting puppies and never getting them fixed, but there are other ways to handle it. Some shelters give you a voucher that you can use at your vet's when the puppy is old enough. You and your vet get to decide when is old enough, but six months is better than 8 weeks.
Can you imagine how few people would follow those rules? I can. I lived in a place where pet overpopulation is an out of control nightmare. If puppies aren't spayed and neutered, they'll just keep reproducing and more and more dogs will be killed. I really believe there should be educational programs in schools about responsible dog ownership. Then maybe we wouldn't have as many unwanted pets. Even in my educated and relatively wealthy town, people buy doodles and "rescues" from Korea because they just didn't know better.

Specifically - by 6 months to a year, bones are not so much growing as in getting bigger, but they're 'knitting'... joining together at the plates.

Best to let that process continue naturally.
I completely agree that it is best. But it doesn't solve the overpopulation crisis in the US.
 

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I think most people would follow those rules.

As for getting people to be more responsible with their pets, that is a lot of territory, from not producing litters to proper nutrition to enough exercise, and training. I guess if they can bring sex education into the schools they can touch on pet care. Advertising doesn't hurt either.
 

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I think most people would follow those rules.

As for getting people to be more responsible with their pets, that is a lot of territory, from not producing litters to proper nutrition to enough exercise, and training. I guess if they can bring sex education into the schools they can touch on pet care. Advertising doesn't hurt either.
 
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