Spay/Neuter FAQ

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[tab title=”At what age should I alter my pet?”]

For maximum benefit, a female should be spayed before her first heat, to prevent accidental pregnancy and greatly reduce the risk of certain cancers. A male should be neutered before the onset of puberty, to prevent behaviors such as spraying from developing. Consult your veterinarian for the appropriate age for your pet.

[tab title=”Won’t altering my pet make them get fat?”]

No. Overeating and inactivity will make your pet fat. Feed pets proper amounts of quality food, and provide adequate exercise.


[tab title=”Will my male dog no longer be masculine?”]

Your male dog will still be male, and will retain his masculine nature. If he started out protective and territorial, he will be protective and territorial after neutering, He will, however, be more focused on his human family, instead of feeling driven to run off and start a canine family.

[tab title=”Isn’t it better to leave my pets “natural?””]
Our pets are not natural. In nature, predators like canines and felines practice natural population control. They start breeding later than domestic animals, have fewer and smaller litters, do not become pregnant again while still raising young, and, in fact, many individuals never breed at all. The abundance of food readily available to domestic animals has altered these more natural reproductive patterns. Just as the genetic differences we have affected in toy poodles would prevent one from being able to fend for itself in the wilderness, the reproductive differences we have affected would be disastrous to the survival of a wild species and its ecosystem.

[tab title=”Shouldn’t I let my pet have one litter?”]

Definitely not. For one thing, every heat cycle brings a significant risk of pregnancy—and first cycles occur as early as four months of age in kittens, six months of age in puppies—dangerously young to have a litter. Spaying before having a single litter greatly reduces the risk of certain cancers. Besides, we already have a staggering surplus of kittens and puppies literally dying for want of homes. Every single litter adds to the problem.


[tab title=”What if I wanted to show my children the miracle of birth?”]

Consider fostering a homeless cat and kittens through a local shelter instead, for an enriching educational experience that will help animals, instead of adding to the problem. Breeding your pet will necessitate the killing of an equal number of kittens or puppies already waiting for homes. Why not teach your children that life is precious by spaying and neutering?


[tab title=”How much will it cost?”]

Prices vary greatly, but remember, it is always less expensive to spay one pet than to have to spay and neuter all of her offspring! Check with your vet, and if the price is an obstacle call the PAF hotline. We can refer you to a Southern California veterinarian near you with reduced pricing, inform you of any special programs or incentives in your area, and, in situations of great financial need, provide a stipend.

Toll-Free Spay/Neuter Hotlines

Los Angeles, Riverside, San Bernardino and

Orange Counties: 1-877-SPAY PET or 1-877-772-9738

San Diego County: 1-855-738-7349

Victor Valley: 760-247-5312