Neutering is the surgical removal of a male pup's reproductive organs. The best time to have your pup neutered is prior to when he hits puberty, which can happen between the ages of 6 and 24 months old.
A young pup can actually be neutered as young as 8 weeks old, as long as he weighs at least 2 pounds, according to the Partnership for Animal Welfare. Neutering your pooch any time prior to when he reaches puberty prevents him from mating and producing unwanted puppies, recommends Dr. Katy Nelson in an article on Washington, D.C., radio station WTOP's website. This procedure also prevents testicular cancer and behavioral problems like aggression, urine marking and the desire to mate.
While dogs can be neutered at 2 months of age, waiting until closer to 6 months may help to prevent skeletal issues from developing in larger dog breeds, according to petMD. In some cases, your vet may recommend waiting until between 6 and 12 months of age to neuter a large or giant breed of dog to allow for proper skeletal development. These are issues to discuss with your vet for your particular dog.
- American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals: Spay-Neuter
- Cesar's Way: Best Age to Neuter or Spay a Dog
- petMD: Determining the Best Age at Which to Spay or Neuter a Dog: An Evidenced-Based Analysis
- Partnership for Animal Welfare: Neutering and Spaying
- American Humane Association: Spaying/Neutering
- WTOP: Ask Dr. Pawz: What Is the Best Age to Neuter a Dog?
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