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Submitted by: Clinton Tuck
As a Chihuahua owner, one of the first and most important decisions you ll make is whether or not to have your pet sterilized. As with any decision, there are both positives and negatives that must be considered before you make any decisions on whether to spay or neuter your Chihuahua puppy.
The most obvious advantage to spaying or neutering your Chihuahua is that is helps to keep the pet population manageable. The primary things than can result in overpopulation are irresponsible breeding and accidental pregnancies. The extra puppies are usually those that end up in shelters, where the lucky few get adopted and the rest have a far graver fate. The financial and emotional costs are stunning and can be avoided with sterilization.
Furthermore, common belief is that spaying or neutering a Chihuahua can improve his attitude and health. Spaying or neutering can also lower his hormone levels, and in turn lessen the chances of certain cancer types. There is proof that spaying a female Chihuahua before her first heat can provide a huge health advantage. Also, sterilization will inherently reduce the dogs desire to wander around in search of a mate. This leaves your pet with a far less chance of getting hit by a car, stolen, lost, etc. There is also evidence that sterilized male Chihuahuas are much less aggressive, which keeps them out of any trouble.
There is vast evidence as to the medical benefits to sterilization, yet there are noted disadvantages that must be taken into account as well. First off, there is the general risk of complications and infections from any type surgical procedure, especially those that use anesthesia. Secondly, although there is evidence that the risk of certain types of cancer decreases with sterilization, there is also evidence that other types of cancers can see a rise in likelihood after you ve had your Chihuahua fixed.
Furthermore, by choosing to have it done as a puppy, you lose the option of deciding to breed later on. If your pet has a fine pedigree or you hope to someday see her deliver a litter of puppies, then sterilization may not be the best idea. However, it s important to be aware of all the responsibility and work that goes into the birth of Chihuahua puppies.
Many agencies and veterinarians are so adamant that pets be sterilized that they will assist in paying the bill if the owner can t afford it. Therefore, financial issues should have no bearing on any decision you make as an owner. The choice to spay or neuter a Chihuahua lies with the owner, and no one else. It is important to know that you are not necessarily taking anything away form your pet by having it done, and you would be doing your small part in alleviating pet overpopulation.
When to Spay or Neuter your Chihuahua
This shouldn t be done until your pet has reached at least six months of age. Doing so will ensure your Chihuahua of being grown enough that he can handle the anesthesia, and everything else involved with a surgery.
Spaying and Recovery
Think of spaying as the canine equivalent to a woman undergoing a hysterectomy, as the uterus and ovaries are removed. Surgery will begin after anesthesia has been given and the Chihuahua is shaved in the appropriate areas.
Recovery isn t usually hard. Your Chihuahua may be a bit sore for awhile and rather sedate and calm. It is important to keep the stitches extremely clean. Any swelling or redness should be reported to the veterinarian immediately, as it could be a sign of infection.
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