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  • #65742 Report Abuse

    Hi All,
    I have a question about an article I read unfortunately I have forgotten where i read this,could be an article from Dr. Becker or an article in Whole Dog Journal or Dog Watch.
    It concerns leaving the ovaries in tact to allow the hormones to function normally.
    Has anyone read this and any feedback would be appreciated.
    It is something I would like to consider for my Millie when it comes time to spay her.

    #65762 Report Abuse
    Laura M

    Hi Cheryl – I read something by Dr. Becker on this subject a while ago, which may be what you are referring to or maybe not, so here is the link to her article just in case. It presents all the info in an easy to understand conversation. Good luck with your decision.

    #65763 Report Abuse


    Yes ,that was the article I was referring to also found the article in Whole Dog Journal. Thank you very much.

    If anyone has done this type of spay, please let me know.

    A very important decision 1st female I have had so I am very concerned I make the best possible decision for Millie’s long term health and well being

    #65768 Report Abuse

    Hi Cheryl,

    I read the article and perhaps I missed something … but if you are not going to remove the ovaries why have the surgery at all? I guess to potentially prevent a infected uterus (pyometria) I say potentially because if any uterine tissue is left behind it can still happen.

    As the article points out you still have to prevent breeding as it may be possible for the female to be injured if bred, and if you have to prevent breeding that seems to diminish doing this primarily for pregnancy prevention. A leash prevents pregnancy.

    If you leave ovaries your dog will still have heat cycles and all that comes with them: urine marking during cycles ( some do) attracting males, wanting to wander to find mates, false pregnancies, inability to participate in certain activities while in heat( dog parks, obedience competition)

    I wouldn’t consider this procedure for my dog.

    #65770 Report Abuse

    GREAT post Aimee! Insightful, as always. Although this line was my favorite: “A leash prevents pregnancy.” 🙂

    #65773 Report Abuse

    Thanks DogFoodie!

    To clarify I meant a leash held by a responsible adult for direct supervision to prevent breeding. Though I guess it would still be possible if overtaken by a pack of intact males! Wouldn’t want anyone to think you can just snap a leash on your dog and let it outside unattended.

    Met a human Dr once who had an intact female. She said she didn’t ever worry about her getting pregnant because she had an underground electric fence. I asked her how that prevents males from entering her yard and breeding her female. She hadn’t thought about that….

    #65774 Report Abuse

    Thank you for your reply.
    I guess what struck me when reading both the article by dr. Becker & the article in Whole Dog Journal, keeping the ovaries intact prevents the hormonal issues that may and I say may occur such as Cushings.
    Yes she still would be going into a heat cycle without the bleeding, but a heat cycle and all that brings.
    I don’t go to dog parks (I know this sounds terrible ) but since Pepper is blind I don’t want her to be scared and with Millie I don’t want her exposed to other dogs that might get her sick.
    We always walk on a leash-a challenge with Millie as she is learning.
    This is a very important issue I must face & there is always the option not to spay.
    Unfortunately, I have no vet that I trust to give me then NON-MONEY IN THEIR POCKET ANSWER.
    I consider myself a responsible pet parent/guardian, I always want to do what is in Millie’s best interest and this is an overwhelming decision to make.
    Pepper was never spayed, yes I do worry about pyometra.
    I am very very concerned and I do trust the opinions of people on this site.
    I wish I knew how to send the link to the Whole Dog Journal article ,but I don’t sorry,it too explained in great detail the pros and cons.
    I have time since I was not going to spay until she went in at least 2-3 heat cycles
    I wish I had more definitive information on this procedure,I don’t know if they even do this procedure at LSU Veterinary school

    #65777 Report Abuse

    I don’t think it’s terrible not to go to dog parks. I don’t either. I have a general dislike for the majority of the dog owning population, and too many people think its a free for all to let their a**hole dogs behave thusly.

    Aimee, I completely agree with the leash statements 🙂

    #65780 Report Abuse
    Laura M

    Perhaps you can find a holistic vet in your area via the link below that might have a different approach to what you are feeling regarding the decision to spay/neuter. I think hormones play a much larger role in our entire body, not just reproduction. The Whole Dog Journal has several articles on the subject but I can’t supply the link because it is a subscription magazine, and a very worthwhile one. If people are interested they can subscribe and read more on line. I commend you for taking the time to think of what is best for your girl and I’m sure whatever you decide it will be a very thoughtful decision. Chris Zink, DVM has written articles on the subject too – you might want to look them up on line. For what it’s worth – dog parks are not on my list of favorite places either! – Good luck.

    #65785 Report Abuse

    Thank you for your advice.
    Believe it or not i did go to “the holistic” vet in my area and I think she needs to look up what the word “Holistic” means. I don’t mean to sound nasty or smarty pants, but it was a joke. I was asking her opinion on an unconventional treatment for Pepper,there has been so many issues with Pepper, my mind is drawing a blank now as to why I went to this so-called holistic vet.
    She really leans to conventional medicine more than a true holistic way of practicing.
    I tried to supply the link to the article at the WDJ, now i understand why I couldn’t.
    I know that Pepper wasn’t spayed probably because it cost those horrible people money.
    Is she suffering from not being spayed? Laura , I don’t know.Are all her health issues related to her not being spayed? Honestly in my gut, I say no, she has an inflammatory condition in her entire body from 8 years of horrendous care.
    I know Millie is different, Oh well I guess I will have to obsess about this for some time.
    Thanks you again for taking the time to post & not thinking there is something wrong with me for not going to a doggie park
    Thanks to you also aquariangt for your doggie park input!

    #65787 Report Abuse

    Aquariangt and Cheryl. I’m with you on the dog park issue. I don’t take my dogs ever to dog parks. The dog owners think it’s a place to hook up and spend the time around everything under the sun while their dogs run around bullying other dogs, fights breaking out, and let’s not even get me started on how they don’t pick up after their own dogs even though most dog parks even have free poop bags at their entrances making it a disease riddled area. Since I don’t vaccinate my dogs (other than 3 year rabies and only because it’s the law), I also don’t walk my dogs on harnesses letting them be exposed to all sorts of toxins and dog poops that irresponsible people inflict on the rest of us. My girls are little, I have a yard (no lawn at all so no need for spraying anything on it…I turned it all into gardens when I moved in last year) they have plenty of area to run around and exercise themselves outside and all over the three story house. I don’t feel the least bit bad about any of it. I do my best to keep them away from outdoor exposure when I can and diseases and parasites in other dogs poops. You also hear so many stories about peoples unleashed dogs running around the neighborhood, I don’t want my girls attached and I sure as hell don’t want to be attacked either. Also, I’m only 5′ 1″. I doubt I could even hold my dogs up high enough that a loose dog couldn’t get to them.

    On the issue of spaying. I’m afraid I’m of no help. All my female dogs have always been spayed and I’m quite sure I will continue to do so. But, that’s just me. It’s not a subject I feel comfortable with giving advice. It’s a very personal choice one way or the other. I’m not sure that either choice is actually wrong or correct.

    #65794 Report Abuse

    Oh Aimee, I knew exactly what you meant and I couldn’t agree more. 🙂

    FWIW, I don’t take mine to the dog park either.

    #65795 Report Abuse

    I don’t do dog parks either.


    Like Dori all the females I’ve ever had have been spayed and I’ll continue to do so. It is a personal decision. I don’t think the data is out there to really know what is best. For myself I see the risk of mammary cancer, pyometria, ovarian cancer, ovarian cysts etc all as being a greater risk than perhaps an uptick in uncommon cancers or conditions. However I will say that my last 2 females have had 1 cycle before spaying. I lean towards having the growth plates closed before removing the hormones.

    #65797 Report Abuse

    I don’t do dog parks either. And I let my females go through one heat before spaying, if they are going to be spayed, which is by far the majority of females I have had. I have had a spayed female get bone cancer, but she was a rescue with a completely unknown past. We rescued her with a horrible compound comminuted fracture, and that alone might have increased her chances of developing bone cancer. I’ve never had an unsprayed female that had mammary tumors, cystic ovaries, pyometria, etc., though I’ve seen more than my share of all of those in other people’s dogs.

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