How Does Spaying Affect Female Dogs?

There's something so special about female dogs. They're amazing family members and dedicated companions, and they are capable of achieving a wonderful bond with their humans. However, when you bring home a female dog, you'll face a major decision: whether to spay your dog. Take your time when considering the pros and cons of spaying a dog, and be sure to consider how spaying will affect your dog when making your decision.

Yorkie with pink hair bow
How Does Spaying Affect Female Dogs?
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No possible pregnancy

Spaying is a surefire way to make sure that your dog can never get pregnant. Having a pregnant dog in your home can be time consuming, and you'll certainly face plenty of vet bills throughout your dog's pregnancy and the process of caring for the puppies after they're born. Plus, if anything goes wrong as your dog gives birth, you'll have to rush her in for an emergency vet appointment and possibly surgery, both of which can be extremely expensive.

With pets overcrowding shelters, spaying your dog allows you to prevent your dog from bringing even more puppies into the world. A spayed dog cannot conceive puppies, and your dog can live her life without ever becoming a mom.

Elimination of heat cycle

Spaying a female dog eliminates her heat cycle, and that alone carries many benefits. Anasazi Animal Clinic says that the hormones of a heat or estrus cycle can cause some female dogs to be irritable, and some female dogs may even feel pain during the heat cycle. By eliminating the heat cycle, female dogs tend to experience more consistent behavior after they're spayed.

While in heat, some female dogs wander off in search of a mate. This can be dangerous to your dog, but eliminating her heat cycle by spaying can reduce or eliminate her drive to wander and visit other dogs.

You may have noticed that your female dog frequently urinates when in heat. This is a natural behavior designed to attract male dogs. Once spayed, your dog's frequent urination and bloody discharge will stop as her heat cycles come to an end. This can help to save your furniture, rugs, and sanity.

Reduction of health issues

If you're weighing the pros and cons of spaying a dog, there may be no better reason to spay your dog than to reduce her chances of developing cancer. According to Canine Journal, female dogs often experience a reduction in life-threatening cancers like cervical tumors, uterine cancer, ovarian cancer, and mammary tumors.

There are additional health benefits to spaying. Female spayed dogs experience a reduction in pyometra and perineal fistulas. According to Anasazi Animal Clinic, approximately 10 percent of all unspayed dogs will contract pyometra, a life-threatening uterine bacterial infection, before they are 10 years old. Spaying your dog reduces those chances.

Spaying means potential vet bill savings for you and an overall healthier dog. Plus, you'll be giving your dog an increased chance at living a long life without encountering these serious health issues.

Female dog behavior after spaying

According to Anasazi Animal Clinic, you may see a change in female dog aggression after spaying. After being spayed, female dogs may be less aggressive toward dogs and people. Since unspayed female dogs sometimes compete for a male dog's attention by fighting, spaying can be a practical way to eliminate this behavior.

Spaying also removes the presence of hormone-driven guarding behavior or aggression. Unspayed female dogs who experience false pregnancies often adopt items like a toy and treat them as puppies, which can prompt an aggressive response if they're approached.

Spaying your dog has many benefits, and its ability to help regulate her behavior can allow your dog and your whole family to coexist more peacefully.