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Best time for spaying

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Hi everyone,


My little girl is due to be spayed on Wednesday, she is 6 months old. I love my pup more than anything and I really just want to do what's best for her. She has a beautiful temperament, maybe a little sensitive, timid/wary, gentle and a real mummies girl. We haven't spent any time apart since we met and she follows me around like a shadow, I have plans to get her out of this habit by gradually spending time away from her but I am really upset at the thought of dropping her off at the vet and how she will react. I don't want her to become damaged in some way, maybe I am just being the timid, sensitive one :)


My main question is when is the best time to have her spayed? I have read that spaying them before their first heat prevents mammary cancer, is this correct? Is mammary cancer common in border collies??


I would ideally like to wait until she is a little older and has had her first heat, keeping her away from other dogs wouldn't be a problem and I can handle the mess.

Is there any benefit in doing this?? My reasoning is that she would hopefully be less clingy and well trained by then which should make the experience less traumatic.


This is my first dog/border collie, I grew up with them but never handled any of these decisions so help from those more experienced would be appreciated. I suspect my reluctance is due mostly to me not wanting to put her through this so I am am possibly just trying to talk myself out of something that is clearly the best path.


Thanks for your time Xx


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I am afraid I have only had male border collies and so I can't be any direct help. There have been various posts about this topic on this forum and others. My personal choice was to wait until my boys were 12 months old before castration, as there are so many hormones involved that I wanted them to be pretty much fully grown. Some recommend waiting to 18 months or 2 years, if at all.


It is very much a personal choice. In my opinion, if you are not planning to breed your border collie, he or she should be de-sexed because of accidents and other irresponsible dog owners. So we agree there. I also think if you are a responsible dog owner and can keep your female dog safe, allowing the dog to fully grow before de-sexing should still get your dog the potential benefits while minimising the potential downsides.


Disclaimer: I am not an expert, a vet or a scientist!

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If you're the kind of person who likes to read a lot of information beforehand, have this: http://skeptvet.com/Blog/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/Benefiits-Risks-of-Neutering-in-Dogs-and-Cats.pdf


I do, and it calms me down a lot, so that's why I offer it!


Could you bring her in for a few minutes at quiet times and stuff some treats into her, a couple of times? It can be pretty darn traumatic (for the human!) to take in a dog who knows that it's the vet and they've only gone there when really stressed. She probably won't be like that since she has no experience of it at all. But if she knows it as a place where Good Things happen it will be easier on you.

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I have just spoken to vet who has said I can go in with her and they will give her the sedative while we are together and then I just leave when it has set in. This has made me feel allot better about it :) I have taken her to the vet a few times for vaccinations and also for kennel cough when she was very young and the vet always lets me hold her so she is happy with her vet experience so far, I would like to keep it that way so this looks like a good option.

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My vet told me the other day that I should watch for mammary tumors, since my new dog had at least one litter before being spayed. He said that the risk of mammary tumors in dogs who've had at least 2 heats goes up 25%. (I commented that that seems evolutionarily counterproductive. Seems as though evolution should, over millennia, favor dogs who are fertile - only dogs who reproduce leave their genes behind. But I suppose historically most dogs would likely have repoduced and died before tumors became their cause of death.)


That SkeptVet article was helpful. Not all the evidence in these studies is reliable, and it's all over the place depending on whose studies you choose to believe.

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