Spaying or Neutering Your Pets: The Numbers

Spay Aware Week 2015 runs from 24th May to the 31st May. The main aim of Spay Aware week is the promotion of a key message; spaying or neutering your pets is an essential part of responsible pet ownership. Here are some numbers from Spay Aware’s website,, to support the message.

• An unspayed female cat and her unneutered mate and all of their offspring, producing 2 litters with 2.8 surviving kittens annually can total a massive 11,606,077 in only 9 years.

• A female dog spayed before her first heat is 2,000 times less likely to develop mammary tumours than if she was left entire until 3 years of age. Around 50% of mammary tumours in female dogs are malignant.

• Mammary cancer is the third most common form of neoplasm in female cats with 80% of mammary tumours being malignant. Entire female cats are seven times more likely to develop mammary cancer than those spayed at puberty.

• Neutering male cats reduces fighting behaviour by over 80% and therefore also significantly reduces cat bite abscesses as well as reducing the risk of FIV infection.

• Testicular cancer is the second most common tumour in male dogs. Neutering prevents this and early neutering also prevents prostatic diseases such as benign prostatic hyperplasia, which starts at 1-2 years of age with 95% of dogs affected by 9 years of age.

• Irish local authorities destroy over 25,000 unwanted dogs every year. To help visualise this figure, Spay Aware says if one dog was destroyed every 5 minutes, this equals 8 hours a day, 52 weeks a year of destroying dogs.

• The cost of spaying or neutering your pet depends on a number of factors. For example, a large dog will cost more than a small dog. The cost of spaying or neutering is quite small when compared to what you will spend on food for your pet throughout it’s lifetime. The possible costs of not spaying or neutering your pet should also be considered. If your pet wanders to find a mate, you may face fines and impoundment costs. Worse yet, consider the costs should your pet be injured while roaming.

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