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  1. Will spaying a female affect her frame or muscularity?

    I'm planning on spaying my pup this fall when she is around 10 - 12 months. I was originally planning on spaying her when she was 3 months but we had a situation arise where i was out of work due to injury & i had to focus on saving money as i didnt know when i was going back.

    My Catahoula pup is now 5months 60lbs & she is very muscular and toned; granted i dont even work her. Just a couple of long walks per day. I really like the way she looks. Will spaying her cause her to lose her physique?

  2. Bumppp

  3. #3
    The answer is no. Not unless you're going to completely ignore her and give her no exercise at all. Spaying shouldn't effect your dog.

  4. #4
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    No. Unless you feed her too much and let her get fat.

    My spayed-at-6 months-female:


  5. Quote Originally Posted by kady05 View Post
    No. Unless you feed her too much and let her get fat.

    My spayed-at-6 months-female:

    Wow she looks great

  6. #6
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    Spayed at 5 months

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stevosaurusrex View Post
    Wow she looks great
    Thanks, that's her a little fat too LOL. I usually keep her a tiny bit leaner.

  8. Going to disagree with the majority here. Spaying a bitch can affect condition to some extent. For example, it is much, MUCH harder to keep my SBT bitch conditioned after her spay than it was while she was intact. Spayed and neutered dogs also tend to lose some of their muscle m$#@! and it's particularly noticeable in bully breeds (I know the dog in the OP isn't one but I figured I'd throw it out there).

    Before spay:



    After spay, still lean and muscular, but almost immediately lost muscle tone:



    A couple years after spay:


  9. #9
    Well spaying involves removing the reproductive organs, i.e. the uterus and ovaries. However the ovaries do much more besides release eggs. Estrogen is a key hormone that they produce, which in turn has a number of positive effects on the body, including accelerating metabolism. In humans, doctors today avoid removing the ovaries in women who otherwise need a hysterectomy because the ovaries are just that important to the body. Dogs have similar physiologic needs for their hormones. The same holds true for males. Neutering them deprives them of their main source of testosterone. It doesn't simply "calm" the dog. It de-energizes them and makes it difficult to build muscle and burn fat.

    I just found an article that goes into some detail the pros and cons of spaying and neutering. You should give it a look over.

    Spay and Neuter

  10. #10
    Genetics has A LOT to do with how a dog will turn out, when it comes to 'frame and muscularity'. Lily, who was spayed at 6 months, is much more muscular than Mia, an intact standard poodle (both are 2.5 years old). No matter how long Mia stays intact, no matter how well she gets conditioned, she will never look like Lily. If you want a dog you know is easy to condition to look the way you want it, get it off dogs that prove that to be true. If you've got a street mutt, you might as well just spay it and it is what it is. IMO, how a dog will grow up to look like is no reason to keep it intact.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lifeisabeach View Post
    Well spaying involves removing the reproductive organs, i.e. the uterus and ovaries. However the ovaries do much more besides release eggs. Estrogen is a key hormone that they produce, which in turn has a number of positive effects on the body, including accelerating metabolism. In humans, doctors today avoid removing the ovaries in women who otherwise need a hysterectomy because the ovaries are just that important to the body. Dogs have similar physiologic needs for their hormones. The same holds true for males. Neutering them deprives them of their main source of testosterone. It doesn't simply "calm" the dog. It de-energizes them and makes it difficult to build muscle and burn fat.

    I just found an article that goes into some detail the pros and cons of spaying and neutering. You should give it a look over.

    Spay and Neuter
    Let's try not to sway members from spaying and neutering.. while yes, there are benefits to keeping dogs intact (there are also negatives, especially for females, pyo isn't pretty), the vast majority of people cannot handle intact animals.

  12. #12
    All 3 of our girls are spayed. Genetics I think affects growth and muscularity more so than spaying or leaving intact. Not saying it doesn't have any affect, but not enough to make me not want to spay my females since they are just pets and will not be competing in any thing.

    Circe- spayed 6 yr old Rat Terrier



    Ripley- 6 yr old spayed AST


    Reba- almost 3 yr old spayed Greyhound


  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by kady05 View Post
    Let's try not to sway members from spaying and neutering.. while yes, there are benefits to keeping dogs intact (there are also negatives, especially for females, pyo isn't pretty), the vast majority of people cannot handle intact animals.
    Agreed, and the article I linked to did cite population control as a big positive to spaying/neutering. I just didn't feel the need to repeat it.

  14. #14
    I spayed my catahoula at five years, she's nine now and put on thirteen miles hunting just today. I don't have a problem keeping her in shape. She is harder to keep weight off when I'm not huntng her regular, but I don't think it's a good comparison to your dog because she is so much younger. I think keeping weight off her is more due to age than spaying.

    Either way, she is healthy and still going strong at nine and still keeping muscle on.

  15. #15
    Both my girls are really easy to keep in good muscular shape. Lily was spayed at 1yr and Scout at 12wks. Now the 12wks part I wasn't too thrilled about, but at least they didn't adopt her out intact since she had two other owners before coming to me!

  16. #16
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    Yeah it doesn't affect their frame. My girl was spayed at 9 weeks by the shelter I work at before I brought her home and she is not fat. :)

  17. #17
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    I will always wait until a dog is at least a year old before altering it. Sex hormones help a dog grow properly. They promote the closure of the growth plates at puberty. Therefore, spaying a dog early can cause the dog's bones to lengthen beyond what they were supposed to. They're also important in helping bones reach their maximun density. Also, a dog spayed or neutered too early will tend to be lankier and less bulky than her genetics would've made her. However, once a dog is finished growing, altering the dog will not affect her. She'll be perfectly fine. But the trick to promoting that natural muscular growth is to wait until she's at least a year. Of course, spaying her earlier wont keep you from keeping her in shape, but she may never reach the potential of her genetics. Some dogs tone up better than others.

    I'm not anti-spay or neuter. =P And I'm all for doing it early when adopting a dog out or when a dog can't be properly contained. But I personally wouldn't do it. There are too many disadvantages when I could just wait longer. For some people, it really is easier just to go ahead and alter the dog. Intact dogs drive me insane sometimes. Haha.

  18. I'm really at a loss as to what to do. Ive read several articles highlighting the pros and cons of spaying. My neighbor said something interesting to me the other day though concerning the spaying of my pup. He said he had his boxer spayed and that didnt stop from cancer attacking & killing his pet.

    ---------- Post added at 09:18 PM ---------- Previous post was at 09:17 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by kady05 View Post
    Let's try not to sway members from spaying and neutering.. while yes, there are benefits to keeping dogs intact (there are also negatives, especially for females, pyo isn't pretty), the vast majority of people cannot handle intact animals.
    What do you mean by cannot handle intact animals?

  19. #19
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    Fixing your dog, contrary to popular belief, is not a miracle cure all. But is it worth it for the average pet bitch? Yes, imo

  20. Quote Originally Posted by DancesWithCurs View Post
    Fixing your dog, contrary to popular belief, is not a miracle cure all. But is it worth it for the average pet bitch? Yes, imo
    Is this only because of a homeowner not wanting to deal with the menstruation? Me personally i live in an apartment. I'm not worried about my dog escaping to find a mate. My vet has even pushed me towards the anti spaying of dogs because of her aggressiveness towards having my dog spayed at 8 weeks. I'm starting to feel vets push us to make a paycheck, which i cant blame them either. I had a bulldog when i was younger, she wasnt spayed until she was 2yrs old. She ended up dying of heart failure at the age of 7.

    Can i hear any feedback from dog owners who do not have there dogs spayed & why?

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