Each year, we celebrate World Spay Day on the last Tuesday of February to bring awareness to the importance of spaying and neutering your pet.
Everyone loves cute kittens and puppies, but the reality is shelters take in countless
litters of puppies and kittens—reaching into the thousands in many locations.
This does not even account for the number of unaltered adult animals being brought to the shelter because they ended up not being what someone expected.
Cats and dogs begin to sexually mature around 6 months of age and each can carry three litters per year on average, with cats carrying an average of four kittens per litter and dogs carrying an
average of five puppies.
That means 12 kittens and 15 puppies in one year, all of which will be able to reproduce by the following year, adding to the problem.
Unfortunately, there are just not enough homes to keep up with those numbers.
For these reasons alone, spaying and neutering your pet before reaching full sexual maturity is so
important, especially for females, but there are health and behavioral benefits as well.
For females, spaying can prevent uterine infections and breast cancer and for males, neutering can prevent testicular cancer and prostate problems.
Altering your pet can also prevent unwanted behaviors such as roaming to find a mate, marking territory, and in some instances it can help prevent aggression.
Preventing unwanted litters and keeping your pet safe and healthy are so important. This is why so many vets encourage altering your pet, and there are also several low-cost surgical options as well.
In our area alone we have five low-cost clinics for cats and two for dogs. You can visit the Antietam Humane Society webpage for a list.
Here at Antietam Humane Society, we also have a weekly spay/neuter clinic that can assist both stray/feral cats as well as house cats within our service area.
For more information, contact Antietam Humane Society at [email protected] or call 717-762-9091.
Kacie L. Morrell is the executive director of Antietam Humane Society.