February is Spay and Neuter Awareness Month! Yes, it's that time of year and I would like to mention that some of you readers didn't follow through like you promised after last year's awareness notice. Some even had coupons to help with the cost but didn't use. Shame. Because of forgetfulness or lack of responsibility, the rescue groups took on the care of the many, many puppies and kittens at the cost of hundreds of dollars. A spayed or neutered pet would have prevented this. Also this simple procedure could have prevented the 14, six-week-old puppies that were left in a Delta alley. Come on -- work with us.
For those who slept through biology class, spay is for females and, yes, neuter is for males. These procedures are usually performed at six months. It isn't a big deal; well, for owners it isn't. Can't speak for the critters. But in the long run it is a big deal for the critters. One female dog can have two litters per year with an average of six to eight pups per litter. Twice a year = 16 unwanted puppies. Estimating half the pups are females, they, in turn, will reproduce more puppies if they aren't spayed. Cats can have up to five litters of five kittens in 52 weeks. Yikes! Not fair.
Not meaning to put the entire reproductive responsibility on the females. We all know it takes two. So while you think your male cattle dog is out minding your herd, he probably is in town courting the cute poodle who is in heat, sleeping peacefully in her yard. Fences won't keep him out! Please keep in mind that dogs work just as hard after being neutered since they aren't drawn to the scent of eligible females in town or over the mountain or anywhere within a two- mile range.
There are many good reasons to fix our pets. Stop thinking about their female-hood or male-hood. Give them a break and just do it. It's their month!
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