Desexing, also known as castration in males, and spaying in females, is a surgical operation that prevents your pet from being able to reproduce. This operation is most commonly performed at 5 months of age in cats and 6 months of age in dogs, however it can be performed at any time after this as well.

Benefits of having your pet desexed include:

  • Preventing unwanted and unplanned litters
  • Preventing heat cycles and associated bleeding in females
  • Prevention of testicular cancer and some prostate diseases in males
  • Reduction in the risk of a female developing mammary cancer (Current stats show a zero percent chance of a pet developing mammary cancer later in life if they are desexed before their first heat cycle. This risk increases to 1 in 10 after a single heat, and 1 in 4 or a whopping 25% chance of mammary cancer developing later in life if they are allowed to have 2 or more heat cycles)
  • Prevention of females developing ovarian cancer, or pyometra ( a life threatening infection of the uterus)
  • Decreasing hormonal related aggression, marking or wandering
  • Often a reduction in council registration fees

At Carnarvon Vet Hospital we consider desexing to be a big operation, just like an ovariohysterectomy is in humans. We go over and above to make sure your pet is comfortable and pain free. They are given pain medication before and after the operation and we also send them home with some pain medication for a few days following the procedure. Our vets even go the extreme of instilling local anaesthetic at the surgery site so that when your pet wakes up from surgery the area is numb and they enjoy a nice, comfy, pain free snooze during recovery.

What to do before and after surgery
Before Surgery:

  • Call our hospital to make a booking.
  • Since your pet is unable to get wet until after the stitches are removed, it is often best to wash them the day before surgery.
  • Do not give your pet food after 12pm the night before. Water is fine, even in the morning before the operation.
  • With your consent, a blood test may be performed prior to surgery to check vital organ function to ensure anaesthetic safety
  • The vet will perform a thorough physical exam prior to administering the anaesthetic premedication.
  • Some pets will require intravenous fluids during surgery. This will be discussed with you on admission.
  • To ensure all pets are as comfortable as possible, all pets received pain relief prior to desexing and some to take home for a few days after the surgery as well.

After Surgery:

  • Keep your pet confined and quiet whilst the effects of the anesthetic wear off in the evening.
  • Make sure they do not over exert themselves, jump, run or play until the wound has healed and the stitches are removed 10 days after the surgery.
  • Give only small amounts of food and water the evening after the surgery.
  • Ensure all medications are given as directed.
  • Keep the incision site dry and clean. Check the incision at least twice daily for any signs of infection, bleeding, swelling, redness or discharge. Contact us immediately if you notice any of these symptoms.
  • Prevent your dog from licking or chewing the incision site. Pet’s saliva is not good for wound healing, and will likely cause an infection. Use the Elizabethan collar provided, especially when you are not able to watch your pet continuously.
  • Ensure you return to our hospital for any directed post op checks and suture removal.

If you have any concerns before or after your pet has been desexed, please call us immediately on (08) 9941 1886.