Okay, so let’s start off explaining what the difference between spaying and neutering is. Spaying is when a female dog’s uterus and ovaries are removed. This is usually done with a small cut in the abdomen region, or via laparoscopy. Neutering, on the other hand, is the surgical removal of a male dog’s testes, similar to castration (guaranteed if you’re a man and you’re reading this, you’re probably clutching your crown jewels as you read this.)
We’re pretty much all in agreement that spaying and neutering is a good thing, but not everyone’s 100% sure as to when it can, or should, be done. Some vets recommend doing it between four and six months old, while others say between five and nine months old. There are also those who think neutering your cockapoo after he has reached puberty has long-term health benefits. Neutering your male pup before he hits his “teens” could prevent some bad habits, like aggression and marking.
For female cockapoos, some recommend spaying before their first heat, which can be as early as five months old. This reduces the chance of mammary tumors, but there is evidence to show that females spayed after their first have a lower risk than unspayed pups. If you’re unsure, you can ask your vet, who will be happy to give you all the information you need.
Why Neutering or Spaying Your Cockapoo is a Good Idea
There are a lot of reasons why spaying or neutering your cockapoo is a good idea. Let’s take a look at why, as a responsible pet owner, you should consider getting it done.
You could help reduce the number of shelter killings
It’s estimated that between 5 and 8 million animals are euthanized in the States every year. By spaying or neutering your cockapoo, you can help prevent unwanted litters and reduce the number of shelter killings.
Your cockapoo will be happier and healthier, for longer
Spaying your cockapoo reduces the risks of breast cancer as well as uterine infections. It is often recommended to do this before her first heat. Neutering your male cockapoo will not only stop unwanted litters, but it’ll also prevent testicular cancer.
Your male cockapoo will stay home
A cockapoo that isn’t neutered will do pretty much anything to find a partner, whether it’s digging a hole under the fence, scaling the wall or pulling a Houdini. And once he’s out, he could get run over, or get into a fight with another male.
Your neutered cockapoo will become a model citizen
Neutering your cockapoo won’t change his personality, but it could prevent a few bad habits developing, like him marking his territory, or being aggressive. Bad behaviour can be avoided by giving him the snip early on.
Myths and Misunderstandings
There are a few myths and misunderstandings that stop people from neutering or spaying their cockapoo. We’re not sure when and how they came about, but it’s time we bust them.
My cockapoo will become lazy and fat
No, it won’t make your cockapoo fat and lazy; too much food and not enough exercise will do that. As long as you keep up the walks and regular outings and maintain a healthy diet, your pooch will stay thin and trim.
My Cockapoo is too young
Um, no! Female dogs can be ready to produce from around four months old, while males can father puppies as early as six months of age. Your vet will recommend that you spay or neuter your pup anywhere between six and nine months old.
It’s a painful procedure
It’s no worse than any other surgery. The procedure is done under general anesthesia you’re your pooch won’t feel a thing. There’s a chance he or she might experience some discomfort after the op, but most dogs recover quickly with the correct post-operative care.
I must breed
Trust us, shelters have as many thoroughbreds as they do crossbreeds, and there just aren’t enough families to adopt them. Owning a purebred or a particular mix breed, like a cockapoo, isn’t a license to breed.
My cockapoo is an indoor pet
Yes, that may be the case but there’s no guarantee they won’t get out, and in the process get pregnant or wander off in search of a female on heat.
I want my children to see the miracle of birth
Admit it, it’s a pretty feeble excuse to not neuter or spay your cockapoo. Instead, teach your children about being a responsible pet owner.
Spaying or neutering your cockapoo as per your vet’s recommendation will make you a part of the solution, rather than contributing to the millions of strays that end up in shelters every year. For us, being a responsible pet owner doesn’t only mean feeding and exercising your pooch, it also means taking care of their best interests.