Will Neutering My Dog Help With Anxiety?

by Naomi Millburn
    Neutering can stop testicular cancer from occurring in dogs.

    Neutering can stop testicular cancer from occurring in dogs.

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    Neutering prevents male dogs from being able to reproduce, that much is certain. The surgery also limits territorialism, marking and risk of ailment in most male canines. Neutering also can have a gradual calming effect. If your pooch is anxious, a little fidgety, talk to your veterinarian about scheduling neutering surgery, stat.

    Neutering a dog can help with anxiety, according to the Humane Society International website. The racing hormones in an intact canine can trigger intense feelings of frustration. Intact males feel a strong push to leave their homes and search for females for mating. When they can't accomplish this, they become stressed. These feelings usually subside greatly in neutered dogs if not entirely.

    Apart from reducing anxiety, neutering has various other behavioral effects in dogs. In neutering a dog -- taking out the testicles -- his testosterone levels drop dramatically. One behavior that is often associated with testosterone is aggression. If you neuter your dog, the drive to battle it out for access to females is no longer there. Instead, you get a much more placid pooch, one who probably feels no need to start a fierce fight with every other male dog he encounters.

    Although neutering can make your pet more peaceful, the surgery can't alter what makes you adore your doggie so much. All it does is help him relax by stopping hormonally fueled actions. If your dog loves curling up next to you and being cuddly as you sleep every night, that's unlikely to change, so don't worry. Your dog is still the same precious guy.

    If your dog is still a puppy, neutering him might prohibit anxiety and other hormonal behaviors from rearing their heads. Neutering puppies is commonplace as early as 8 weeks in age, although all canines are different. Talk to the veterinarian to determine when to proceed with your doggie's neutering. Dogs generally attain reproductive capabilities when they're between 6 months and 9 months old. If your dog gets fixed before that point, he might miss out entirely on the tension and anxiety of hormones -- and that's a good thing. Fully mature dogs can undergo neutering surgery, though it can be problematic in those carrying excess weight. Get your vet's assurance beforehand.

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    About the Author

    Naomi Millburn has been a freelance writer since 2011. Her areas of writing expertise include arts and crafts, literature, linguistics, traveling, fashion and European and East Asian cultures. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in American literature from Aoyama Gakuin University in Tokyo.

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