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Old 02-10-2012, 11:21 PM
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skittledoo skittledoo is online now
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Default Spay questions

I've been thinking more and more lately about when we are going to spay Cricket. It's ridiculously expensive to spay out here it seems... Way more expensive than it would be if we were still in New Mexico.

My questions:

1. How do you deal with the fear and anxiety of having your dog put under for the surgery? I guess I'm just worried that Cricket may not do so well or have a reaction to the anesthesia or something. I'm sure she would be fine, but I can't help but get worked up worrying about how she would do.

2. One of our clients recommended we look into the local shelter out here that does more affordable spay/neuter. They take your dog to a vet that does the surgery and you pick up your dog the next morning. They have the vet listed that they take dogs to in case people want to contact the vet themselves, but its a program they operate to help people S/N out here and it not be $500 like my vet quoted me. With that said, what are your thoughts on a program like this. Is this something I should look into or should I be leery? My main concern is that I want an experienced vet to do the surgery and not a vet student since I would rather someone not operate on my dog that is learning.

3. For female dogs that tend to mark.... Did your female stop/decrease marking after being spayed or did they continue to mark all the time? Cricket marks a lot outside, but has been marking in the house recently... I think she is going to go into heat again soon.

4. Did you notice any other differences in your dog after being spayed? Temperament? Weight? Etc.

I'm getting closer to wanting to spay Cricket, but I don't want to jump into it without first making sure it's something I want to do. We managed her last heat really well so I know we can handle her being intact, but when she is in heat we miss out on a lot and we have quite a few classes coming up that she wouldn't be able to take if she is in heat since my trainer is very adamant about no dogs in season in any classes ever. Right now I'm crossing my fingers she doesn't go into heat in the next few weeks since we are getting ready to take her CGC test, lol. I probably won't spay her until after another season at the very least and I may wait even longer, but right now I'm just trying to do my research and weigh the pros and cons.
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Old 02-10-2012, 11:27 PM
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Well, to address one of your concerns, we had Enzo spayed at a clinic, (s/n clinic only) and she did fine. I think a lot of clinics vet donate their time to do these low cost s/n's.

Second, I haven't noticed any difference in Enzos temperament. She never marks, so that's not something I have any experience with. Her coat did change. She never (to this day) grew her undercoat back properly. Its there, but its no longer the correct lab type double coat.

She's still.ridiculous to try to.keep weight ON as well.
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Old 02-10-2012, 11:32 PM
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The reason spays (and neuters) can be so expensive is that more and more vets are doing pre-op bloodwork, IV catheter/fluids, more extensive monitoring, more complete pain control, etc. This is the way it SHOULD be. Honestly if you're worried about how she'll do under anesthesia, I wouldn't try to get a cheap spay because that usually means no bloodwork, no IV/fluids, often no pain meds, etc - and in some appalling cases not even a sterile surgical area.

If you want to risk it, then do the cheap spay. If you want to make sure everything is done properly, do the more expensive one BUT ask what all they include and make sure they're doing everything they need to be doing for that price.
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Old 02-10-2012, 11:50 PM
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To ensure the safest surgery I would absolutely do pre-anesthetic bloodwork, and make sure they place an IV catheter and use monitoring devices.... I've spent time at a clinic that DOESN'T do any of this and that is the reason why their surgeries were so cheap. Every time I watched them do a surgery, it felt like a trainwreck waiting to happen. Having a technician just check to make sure the heart is still beating is so so so so so bad and unsafe.

Obviously there is always a risk when you anesthetize an animal, but by taking the proper precautions you greatly minimize the risk.

Juno was spayed at 6 months old and she marks all the time. Never in the house, but when we're at the dog park she hikes herself up on every bush or tree that she comes across. I don't care. I don't let her do it on leashed walks though. I can't say if it affected her behavior at all because she was young. She maintains a proper weight just fine. Only post-spay issue we've had is that she's incontinent.
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Old 02-10-2012, 11:51 PM
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1. I just remember that this is a surgery done 1000000 times a day. at shelters. to puppies. to kittens. to sick animals. to unhealthy animals. and they do just fine. I also like to wait in the clinic while they have their surgery, my vet was fine with it. I brought my computer and did work, it was nice being there. Maybe just find somewhere close by to wait..

2.I volunteered at a shelter and we did loads of s/n clinics. These are the kind of surgeries that vets can practically do blindfolded... A lot of times, vets from local clincs donate their time or offer to help out. and even the vets on staff are very good..it's practically ALL they do so chance are.. they are good at the surgery ITSELF

BUT vets don't charge that much for fun. There do a better job.. fact. They have better equipment, more space, are focused on YOUR DOG alone and There aren't 20-30 other dogs waiting to get surgeries/recovering. The vet is focused on YOUR DOG. and so are the vet-techs. They are focused on her recovery, know her chart, know her name etc.. You get pain killers, blood work, IV etc.. your dog is on like 10 monitors the whole time. They are checking every little thing. They are with her while she recovers, and watching her closely during the entire recovery/surgery.

I'm not saying shelters don't do a good job, clinics are GREAT.. but lets face it. 60 dogs a day (and thats way less than average). 35 in recovery lets say. 2 vets. handful of vet techs maybe.. limited space. lots of people. line outside. charts kind of everywhere.. things slip through the cracks.

Don't get me wrong, shelters do spays all the time. they do em fast. they do em often and dogs come out just fine.. but there is a price to pay for cheap and quick. It's an assembly line of sorts..

One thing that would bother me is the staying over night thing.. shelters are stressful. the noise. the smells. the whole thing.. don't know why they would want her to stay overnight

3. I would guess it's the same for females as it is for males. Some say that s/n early stops them from ever marking/mounting.. but once they start, it's about training. not hormones.

I would go back to potty training/being leashed to you til you get the marking under control. Chances are, spayed or not.. she's gonna do it.

4. Never noticed any changes. Weight or otherwise. spaying/neutering really young (before puberty) you see lots of changes but after the fact..never noticed it.

Some people say with the hormones under control some females are less..erm..bitchy and males are less OMGOMGFEMALE.
but I don't think it's a s/n thing.. I think it's a training thing personally. Plenty of intact dogs are perfectly behaved.
Romeo isn't neutered. He neither mounts nor marks. never has.

It sucks keeping them still (females have to wait FOREVER while the stitches heal..crate time ain't fun, neither is the cone lol ) but other than that, the surgery has always seemed pretty easy with every dog I've seen go through it.
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Old 02-11-2012, 12:15 AM
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AdrianneIsabel AdrianneIsabel is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skittledoo View Post
I've been thinking more and more lately about when we are going to spay Cricket. It's ridiculously expensive to spay out here it seems... Way more expensive than it would be if we were still in New Mexico.

My questions:

1. How do you deal with the fear and anxiety of having your dog put under for the surgery? Do all the bloodwork!

2. One of our clients recommended we look into the local shelter out here that does more affordable spay/neuter. They take your dog to a vet that does the surgery and you pick up your dog the next morning. They have the vet listed that they take dogs to in case people want to contact the vet themselves, but its a program they operate to help people S/N out here and it not be $500 like my vet quoted me. With that said, what are your thoughts on a program like this. Is this something I should look into or should I be leery? I'd go with someone you trust, not the bargain.

3. For female dogs that tend to mark.... Did your female stop/decrease marking after being spayed or did they continue to mark all the time? My dogs, male or female, have never marked in the house. However, my spayed female marks outside and always has where as my intact female does not and never has marked outside.


4. Did you notice any other differences in your dog after being spayed? Temperament? Weight? Etc. Hannah was hard to keep weight off after being spayed, depends on the dog though, a lot of them aren't that hard. Temperament, not yet ime really.
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Old 02-11-2012, 06:57 AM
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Thank you guys so much. I'm going to call around to some of the other vets in the area to get price quotes and ask them what all they do when they spay. I'd rather be safe than sorry and do prefer the idea of them focusing more on my dog to make sure she is safe. I still haven't decided if I want to do this soon or wait a while longer, but luckily I don't absolutely have to make the decision right this very minute.
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Old 02-11-2012, 06:53 AM
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Spay/neuter clinics are fine as long as everything goes well. And most of the time everything does go well. Most of the time all of the monitoring (EKC, pulse ox, respirations, C02, blood pressure, and temperature) and pre-emptive stuff we do at the clinic where I work is probably "overkill". BUT if something *does* happen, we're going to catch it faster and be able to deal with it.

Like Fran said, the doctors at spay/neuter clinics are excellent at the surgery itself, but every anesthetic case is different. And that's my hangup with clinics. The sheer volume doesn't lend itself to close monitoring.
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Old 02-11-2012, 09:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skittledoo View Post
2. One of our clients recommended we look into the local shelter out here that does more affordable spay/neuter. They take your dog to a vet that does the surgery and you pick up your dog the next morning. They have the vet listed that they take dogs to in case people want to contact the vet themselves, but its a program they operate to help people S/N out here and it not be $500 like my vet quoted me. With that said, what are your thoughts on a program like this. Is this something I should look into or should I be leery? My main concern is that I want an experienced vet to do the surgery and not a vet student since I would rather someone not operate on my dog that is learning.
My friend just moved here from VA, and she was telling me about this very program just yesterday. She had considered doing it with her dog, but in the end got him neutered at her vet instead.

The problem was, first of all he'd be transported in a truck with a ton of other dogs... shelter dogs. Shelter dogs with any number of other communicable diseases. Not to mention how stressful it would be to be in such close quarters with so many other dogs he didn't know. For my friend, this was pretty much the deciding factor; for me it would be as well, but I do believe a lot of dogs would handle it fine.

Then once the dogs get to the clinic, you have all the concerns that have already been mentioned - no pre-op bloodwork, less than ideal monitoring during surgery, etc.

And then after surgery, the dog has to spend the night in a stressful place and go on another stressful car ride.

If you're looking for another low-cost S/N place in VA, according to my friend, there is none. Personally, I'd just get it done at my vet.
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Old 02-11-2012, 09:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skittledoo View Post
1. How do you deal with the fear and anxiety of having your dog put under for the surgery? I guess I'm just worried that Cricket may not do so well or have a reaction to the anesthesia or something. I'm sure she would be fine, but I can't help but get worked up worrying about how she would do.
(1) Calmly take dog to vet
(2) Go on a long walk, eat ice cream, etc. for a few hours while obsessively checking your phone
(3) Calmly pick up dog and laugh at yourself for getting so worked up

At least, that's how it went for me

Quote:
Originally Posted by skittledoo View Post
2. One of our clients recommended we look into the local shelter out here that does more affordable spay/neuter. They take your dog to a vet that does the surgery and you pick up your dog the next morning. They have the vet listed that they take dogs to in case people want to contact the vet themselves, but its a program they operate to help people S/N out here and it not be $500 like my vet quoted me. With that said, what are your thoughts on a program like this. Is this something I should look into or should I be leery? My main concern is that I want an experienced vet to do the surgery and not a vet student since I would rather someone not operate on my dog that is learning.
Your call. I know vets who volunteer their time for that sort of thing and they are some of the same vets I would take my dogs to for general surgery. I elected to have bloodwork done first, etc. and around here they only offer the low cost s/n for cats and pit bulls so wasn't an option anyway. You could always try asking who they are having do the surgeries and look them up first.

Quote:
Originally Posted by skittledoo View Post
3. For female dogs that tend to mark.... Did your female stop/decrease marking after being spayed or did they continue to mark all the time? Cricket marks a lot outside, but has been marking in the house recently... I think she is going to go into heat again soon.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skittledoo View Post
4. Did you notice any other differences in your dog after being spayed? Temperament? Weight? Etc.
Kim was spayed before her first heat, if that makes a difference. No change in temperament, and she can still eat whatever the heck she wants and not put on weight. 'Course her ridiculous coat always make her look like a sausage on toothpicks but she's a wirey thing and always has been.
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