Authored by Leah Yusuf
In the first special interest post, the topic of whether or not sterilization is right for your dog was discussed. I feel the need to make a couple of points absolutely clear.
First, whether or not you decide to spay or neuter your dog is YOUR decision. It is your responsibility to do what you feel is right for your companion and yourself. There are no laws here in Ontario regarding the spaying and neutering of dogs other than the exclusion of intact animals at leash-free parks in most regions and of course the dogs covered under Ontario’s Breed Specific Legislation.
Second, when you opt to do a vasectomy or a tubal ligation, the only biological function that you are preventing is pregnancy. You will essentially have an intact male and/or female. All hormonal behaviors will still be present and the female will still have her heat cycle. It is very important that you recognize that the potential for reproductive cancers and diseases will be present. Please inform yourself and make sure that you are comfortable with your decision.
So, if you decide that a vasectomy or tubal ligation is right for your companion, your next task is to find a Veterinarian who is willing to perform these surgeries. I was interested to see if two Veterinary clinics that I have used and presently use would perform these surgeries, so I called them up. The first clinic’s answer was a resounding “no” and the Veterinarian from the second clinic called me back himself. He was very adamant that dogs should be spayed and neutered. At his clinic, vasectomies and tubal ligation’s are done on a case by case basis. In his eyes and the eyes of the majority of the Veterinary community, sterilization is best. According to him, the problem with vasectomies and tubal ligation’s is that your dog is at what the Veterinary community feels is a very real risk for developing diseases of the reproductive system and this in turn may require your companion to undergo yet another surgery at some point in his or her lifetime.
So, if you decide to keep your companion intact, or have a vasectomy or tubal ligation procedure done, please inform yourself, consult your Vet and make sure that you are comfortable with your decision.