Why Spay & Neuter

WHY IS SPAY/NEUTER SO IMPORTANT?
The Yakima Humane Society and local rescue groups have seen first-hand the result of not spaying or neutering companion animals. Thousands upon thousands of animals pour through the doors of our facility every year. Many animals in our community remain unaltered, producing litter after litter, just adding to the pet overpopulation problem that we struggle with day after day.

Animal welfare experts across the nation agree that spaying and neutering companion animals is the most effective method to curbing the pet overpopulation problem. Having your pet spayed or neutered is a critical step to eliminating pet overpopulation and the needless euthanasia of so many animals.

Throughout the United States, millions of unwanted companion animals are euthanized every year, which is a direct result of pet overpopulation. Spaying or neutering our companion animals will help get a handle on this epidemic, as well as providing a great many other benefits.

We are dedicated to providing a non-lethal solution to the problem of pet overpopulation.


Our friends at Best Friends Animal Society created this wonderful video about the importance of early spay/neuter.

Your pets can get pregnant sooner than you think. Half of all pets born in the U.S. are accidents, leading to millions killed in shelters each year. Get the facts on getting your fix and see how one little number can make a huge difference. Learn more at www.fixatfour.com.


WHAT IS A SPAY/NEUTER SURGERY?
Spaying or neutering refers to the surgical procedure to render a cat or dog unable to reproduce.
Spaying is the term used for female animals. It is the surgical removal of the ovaries and uterus.
Neutering is the term used for male animals. It is the surgical removal of the testicles.
Fixing, sterilizing, or altering your pet are other terms used for spaying or neutering.
Spaying or neutering your pet is a very safe procedure.

GOOD FOR YOUR PET
Spaying or neutering your pet can decrease the risk of diseases that are expensive to treat.
Pets that are spayed or neutered have up to an 85% lower risk of certain types of cancers and other serious health complications.
Animals that are fixed make better companions because they are not motivated to wander in search of a mate.

GOOD FOR YOU - eliminate annoying behavioral problems
Altered animals are significantly less likely to mark or spray urine.
Female animals in heat can cry incessantly, act nervous and attract males from all around. Having your pet spayed eliminates the heat cycle.
Animals that have been spayed or neutered are less likely to bite, roam or get into fights.

GOOD FOR YOUR COMMUNITY
A compassionate society knows there is a better way to solve overpopulation than needlessly euthanizing unwanted animals.
Communities spend millions of dollars to control unwanted companion animals. Spaying and neutering helps reduce the number of strays and unwanted animals in our community.
Unintentional breeding is the root cause of most vicious dog bites and attacks.
Spaying or neutering reduces an animal's desire to roam, resulting in fewer traffic accidents and neighborhood complaints of nuisance animals.
Stray animals pose real problems in many parts of the country. They can prey on wildlife, cause vehicular accidents, damage the local fauna, and scare children.

MYTHS AND FACTS REGARDING SPAY/NEUTER
Myth: It is unhealthy or unethical to spay or neuter when my pet is young.
Fact:
Spaying or neutering is safe for young animals. There is no veterinary research that suggest spaying or neutering pets before six months of age interferes with healthy development. The Yakima Humane Society Spay & Neuter Clinic accepts healthy patients for surgery as young as two months old, as long as they weigh at least two pounds.

Myth: My female pet cannot be spayed if she is in heat.
Fact: The surgeon at Yakima Humane Society Spay & Neuter Clinic is very experienced and comfortable with spaying females in heat.

Myth: It is better to have one litter first.
Fact: Females spayed before their first heat cycle are typically healthier. Every time a female pet goes through a heat cycle, she is at an increased risk for breast cancer and uterine infections.

Myth: My pet will get fat and lazy.
Fact: Spaying or neutering does not make pets fat or lazy. The truth is that pets get fat and lazy because they are fed too much and do not get enough exercise.

Myth: When my pet has a litter I will find good homes for all of them.
Fact: You may find homes for all your pet's puppies or kittens, but there are already puppies and kittens being euthanized in shelters every week. Further, you have no way to guarantee that those animals will not have babies of their own when they get older. Allowing your pet to breed only contributes to the problem. Be part of the solution and call the clinic today!

Myth: My pet is purebred; they don't end up in animal shelters.
Fact: One in four animals that enter shelters are purebred. Regardless of whether or not they are purebred, 50% of animals that enter into shelter are euthanized due to overpopulation.

Myth: My pet is just so special and I want the puppies/kittens to be just like them.
Fact: Genetics are not an exact science and even professional breeders cannot guarantee how a litter will develop. The overpopulation problem will continue to grow on the slim chance that you might get another animal that is just like the parent.

Myth: My male pet will feel like less of a male.
Fact: Pets do not have any concept of masculinity. Neutering your male pet will not cause him to suffer any kind of emotional identity crisis, nor will it change his basic personality. Your pet will be healthier and a better companion.

Myth: It's good for my children to witness the miracle of birth.
Fact: Even if children are able to see a pet give birth, the lesson they will really learn is that animals can be created and discarded as it suits adults. Instead, it should be explained to children that the real miracle is life, and that preventing the birth of some pets can save the lives of others. Letting your pet produce offspring you have no intention of keeping teaches your children irresponsibility. Anyone who has seen an animal euthanized in a shelter for lack of a home knows the truth behind this dangerous myth. There are countless books and videos available to teach your children about birth in a responsible manner, without sacrificing animals to do so.

Myth: My dog will no longer be a protective watch dog.
Fact: Spaying or neutering does not affect a dog's natural instinct to protect its home and family. A dog's temperament is formed more by genetics and environment than by sex hormones.