Desexing your pet is a surgical procedure that prevents them from being able to reproduce.  In male pets it is commonly referred to as “castration”, and in female pets as “speying”.  This is the most frequent surgery performed by our vets, and is most often a day procedure.

The recommended age to desex your pet is between 4 and 6 months if you aren't going to breed from them, however they are never too old to be desexed.

There are many benefits to desexing your pets at 6 months, including:

  • Preventing unwanted litters, which can be very costly, and may add to the already overwhelming number of stray animals that are put down each year
  • Prevention of testicular cancer and prostate disease in males, and it can help prevent pyometra (infection of the uterus) and mammary tumours (breast cancer) in females
  • Stopping the “heat” cycle in females 
  • Decreasing aggression towards humans and other animals, especially in males
  • Being less prone to wander, especially in males
  • Reduction of council registration fees

What to do before and after surgery

Before surgery:

  • Call to make a booking for your pet's surgery.  We will arrange an admission time to drop your pet off in the morning.
  • If your pet is a dog, we recommend giving them a bath the day before surgery as they are then unable to be washed for 2 weeks after surgery
  • Your pet will need to be fasted for surgery.  You can give them an evening meal as normal the night prior to surgery, but remove any leftover food by 8pm.  Water should be freely available to your pet until 7am on the day of surgery.

On the day of surgery:

  • Please arrive on time for your admission appointment.  We will have a consent form to go through with a few questions.
  • We recommend a blood test be performed prior to anaesthesia to check vital organ function.  This is an extra that can be discussed and consented to during your admission appointment.
  •  Intravenous fluid therapy is an optional extra for during your pet's surgery which can aid in maintaining their blood pressure. This can be discussed and consented to during your admission appointment.
  • The vet will perform a thorough physical examination before administering any drugs for anaesthesia.
  • Your pet will then undergo their surgery.  To ensure they are as comfortable as possible, they receive a long-acting pain relief injection as part of the desexing procedure.  Some pets may be prescribed further pain relief medication for you to administer at home for a few days after the procedure, if required.
  • You will receive a call from a nurse when your pet is in recovery to let you know how they are.  We will also arrange a discharge time for you to pick your pet up in the afternoon.

After Surgery:

  • Keep your pet restrained and quiet as the effects of anaesthetic can take up to 48hrs to wear off completely.
  • Keeping them quiet is also essential to allow the wound to heal.  Movement like running/jumping can cause stitches to break open, which is not good!
  • Food should be limited to small portions only on the night of surgery.  Follow any dietary instructions that the vet has provided.  Normal feeding can resume the next day.
  • Ensure all post-surgical medications (if any) are administered as per the label instructions.
  • Ensure your pet’s rest area is clean to avoid infection.
  • Check the surgical wound at least twice daily for any signs of infection or disruption (e.g. bleeding, swelling, redness or discharge). Contact the vet immediately if any of these occur. Do not wait to see if they will spontaneously resolve.
  • Prevent your pet from licking or chewing the wound. Special cone-shaped collars assist with this problem. A single chew can remove the careful stitching with disastrous effects.
  • No baths or swimming for 2 weeks post surgery