We have all enjoyed the glimpse of spring weather recently, but as the temperatures start to warm up we will also see an increase in the numbers of unwanted litters of cats within our community. Spring is what we like to refer to as kitten season. It is the time of the year where cats reproduce and shelters all across the Miami Valley are flooded with litters of kittens in need of new homes.
With so many stray cats in our community, spaying or neutering plays a huge part in battling overpopulation in a humane and effective way. In Montgomery County alone, there are more than 50,000 free-roaming cats. Most of these cats came from unaltered animals reproducing at a rapid rate. These stray animals can pose many problems for our community. They can prey on wildlife, cause car accidents or damage to a vehicle and can frighten children.
By spaying or neutering your pet, you are helping us make an impact on the overpopulation issue affecting our community by helping us stop the cycle of unwanted pets in a humane and effective manner. Not only does it lower the number of unwanted litters in our community, but it is also beneficial to your pets. Here are just a few reasons why you should get your pet spayed or neutered.
To offer your pet the best protection against disease, spay her before she goes into her first heat. Spaying helps prevent breast cancer and uterine infections, which can be fatal to both dogs and cats.
Despite the rumors you may hear, spaying or neutering a pet will not cause them to gain weight and lose energy. A lack of exercise and overfeeding are to blame for these issues. If you maintain a healthy diet and monitor your pet’s food intake as well as provide them with frequent exercise, you will not see a problem with this. In fact, spaying or neutering your pet makes them healthier causing them to live an average of two or three years longer than pets that are not spayed or neutered.
During mating season, your un-fixed males can smell a female in heat from far away. It is their nature to find a mate at any cost. This means, they have no problem digging under your fence, escaping out the backdoor or running into traffic to get to their potential mate. Once he is out on his own, your male pet runs the risk of injury by not just traffic, but other male animals whom are also on the prowl for their mate.
Yes, you will stop unwanted litters, but did you know that you can also prevent testicular cancer if you neuter your pet within six months of age? Neutering your pet early can also alleviate a lot of aggression issues related to mating down the road.
Did you know that during breeding season female felines go into heat an average of four to five days every three weeks? To attract their potential mates they also yowl and urinate more frequently. By spaying your cat, you are eliminating their mating cycle and don’t have to worry about them making a mess all over your house.
In general, animals that have been spayed or neutered tend to show less aggression and can be more affectionate. Animals that are intact tend to show more aggression, get into more fights and bite more frequently.
The cost of surgery is far less than it will cost you to care for an unwanted litter of puppies, kittens or bunnies. Since it also helps to lower the risk of health problems in your pets, you save yourself the cost of treating your pet for expensive health issues such as cancer.
Do you have a question for Brian? E-mail him at AskBrian@hsdayton.org. Brian Weltge is the President and CEO of the Humane Society of Greater Dayton. The Humane Society is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to building loving relationships between people and pets. Founded 113 years ago, it is the largest and most established “no-kill” animal welfare agency in the area. It focuses on pet adoptions, eliminating pet overpopulation, providing education and ensuring the humane treatment of animals. For more information about the Humane Society of Greater Dayton, call 937- 268-PETS (7387) or visit www.hsdayton.org.