Benefits of Spaying and Neutering

Spaying and neutering are common surgical procedures performed by veterinarians. These surgeries prevent dogs and cats from producing litters of puppies or kittens.

Getting your pet spayed or neutered can:

  • Reduce the number of unwanted pets in our community
  • Improve your pet's health 
  • Reduce unruly behavior
  • Save on the cost of pet care

Community Benefits of Spay/Neuter

In Sacramento, more than 30,000 animals enter shelters each year. About 30 percent of them are put to sleep because not enough people are willing to adopt them. Spaying and neutering animals helps reduce the number of animals entering and euthanized in shelters.

Health Benefits of Spay/Neuter

Spaying a female animal will:

  • Eliminate complications associated with mating, pregnancy and birth
  • Completely eliminate the risk of uterine or ovarian cancer
  • Almost completely eliminate the risk of a life-threatening infection of the uterus called pyometra, which requires emergency surgery
  • Greatly reduce the risk of breast cancer, especially if she is spayed before her first heat

Neutering a male animal will:

  • Reduce the risk for injury or death that could occur when pets escape in search of a mate or fight with other animals
  • Greatly reduce the risk of prostate infections in male dogs and feline AIDS (feline immunodeficiency virus or FIV) in male cats
  • Eliminate the risk of testicular cancer
  • Provide other heath benefits, like reduced risk of benign perianal tumors

Behavior Benefits of Spay/Neuter

Spaying a female animal will:

  • Eliminate spotting when a dog is in heat
  • Eliminate the annoying pacing and crying of female cats in heat
  • Eliminate the attraction of persistent males looking for a mate
  • Reduce sexual frustration and stress

Neutering a male animal will:

  • Reduce or eliminate irritability
  • Reduce or eliminate annoying behavior like urine marking, spraying and mounting
  • Reduce the tendency for him to escape and roam in search of a mate
  • Reduce fighting with other males
  • Reduce sexual frustration and stress 

Financial Benefits of Spay/Neuter

  • The cost of spay/neuter surgery is less than the cost of having, caring for, and rehoming a litter of puppies or kittens.
  • Caring for a pet with cancer in the reproductive system or pyometra can easily cost thousands of dollars—five to ten times as much as a routine spay or neuter surgery.
  • Many counties and cities in the Sacramento area require people with unaltered pets to pay higher license renewal fees.

More Spay/Neuter Information from National Nonprofits