When Should A Labradoodle Be Spayed Or Neutered?

New puppies can be very exciting. 

There are many things that you will need to consider, such as the food you are going to feed, training, and when you are going to have your Labradoodle spayed or neutered

Are you trying to figure out the best age to spay or neuter your Labradoodle?

This can all depend on many different factors. 

When Should A Labradoodle Be Spayed Or Neutered?

A male Labradoodle should be spayed between 6 and 12 months of age. Female Labradoodles that will be less than 45 pounds as adults should be spayed at around 4 to 6 months of age. If they will be larger than that, it’s best to wait until they are 6 to 12 months of age. 

Your vet can also discuss all the pros and cons of spaying and neutering your Labradoodle early vs. waiting until they are a little older. 

Spaying will remove your female Labradoodle’s ovaries and uterus. 

Neutering is often used to remove the testicles in your male Labradoodle, but technically, it means to make your dog gender neutral so it can be used for a male or female

Often Neutering is used to describe removing a male dog’s testicles. 

The most common age your vet will recommend spaying or neutering your Labradoodle is when they are around 6 months old. 

There are many different factors that will influence when you should spay and neuter your Labradoodle. 

Large to giant breed dogs will mature later in their life, and some people will want to wait until the dog is a few months older so that they are fully mature before spaying and neutering them.

American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) has recently altered its views on when you should spay your Labradoodle. They recommend a different age for different size dogs. 

  • Smaller dogs (under 45 pounds): Your vet will advise that you should spay your Labradoodle before their first heat cycle. Most dogs will have their first heat cycle anywhere between 5 and 10 months. Your vet will advise that your female dog be spayed prior to their first cycle to help reduce their risk of having mammary cancer. When you spay your Labradoodle early, you will decrease their chance of mammary cancer by about 90%.  
  • Larger Dogs (Over 50lbs): Some vets may advise larger Labradoodle to wait until they are 5 to 15 months old. If you wait until after their first heat cycle but before your Labradoodle’s second heat cycle will still decrease the risk of mammary cancer and decrease the risk of cancer, bone disease, torn ligament, and joint disease. It may also decrease the chance that your dog develops urinary incontinence. These are all common problems seen in older larger breed Labradoodles.  

When Should I have my male dog neutered?

Your vet is able to do this procedure at any age as long as the testicles are present, most vets will recommend that you have your male Labradoodle neutered between 6 to 12 months. 

Smaller dogs tend to mature faster and are usually neutered around 6 months, while large breed dogs tend to take longer to become fully mature, and you will want to wait until your Labradoodle is around 12 to 18 months of age before neutering them. 

If your dog does start to show aggressive or unwanted mating behaviors, you can have them neutered sooner to help stop these unwanted behaviors. 

Why should you spay your Labradoodle?

There are many benefits to having your Labradoodle spayed. 

These are the most common reasons that you would want to consider spaying your Labradoodle.  

  • Overpopulation: By spaying your Labradoodle, you are helping decrease the number of unwanted litters and dogs in shelters.  
  • Mammary cancer: By spaying your Labradoodle early, you will decrease the chance of mammary cancer. You will decrease mammary cancer in your Labradoodle by 90% if you spay your Labradoodle before their first heat cycle.  
  • Pyometra: Pyometra is an infection in your Labradoodle’s uterus that can be prevented by spaying your Labradoodle. A pyometra is an infection in your Labradoodle’s uterus. This occurs very commonly in older intact female Labradoodles. This disease can cause your dogs to become very sick and possibly need emergency surgery to treat the infection. Sometimes, this can even be fatal. During your Labradoodle’s spay, the uterus will be removed, and thus cannot get infected.
  • Stop unwanted guests: By spaying your Labradoodle, you will cut down on the number of unwanted male dogs unexpectedly entering your backyard attempting to mate with your Labradoodle. A male dog will smell the pheromone released by your female dog up to a mile away. If the male is intact, they will find a way to get over and fence to mate with your female dog.  

Before spaying your Labradoodle, your veterinarian should have a complete health checkup. 

This ensures that there are no underlying conditions that would cause your Labradoodle not to have a successful surgery. 

Why would you want your Male Labradoodle to be neutered?

Most people neuter their Labradoodle to prevent them from getting a female dog pregnant. 

There are many other reasons that you may want your dog neutered. 

When Should A Labradoodle Be Spayed Or Neutered? 1

Decrease Unwanted pet Population

The most common reason people have their Labradoodle neutered is to help prevent the overpopulation of dogs. 

There are many pets who end up in a shelter.

By having your Labradoodle neutered, you can help decrease this population.

A single male Labradoodle can mate with many female dogs each day, leading to many offspring. 

Prevent aggressive Behaviors

Dog fights are often between unneutered male dogs, or the dog who instigated the fight will often not be neutered. 

These extra testosterone hormones can cause your dog to show aggressive behaviors.

Having your dog neutered, will cause a large decline in testosterone hormones, thus decreasing their drive to fight other dogs. 

Prevent looking for a Girlfriend

Unneutered male Labradoodles tend to look for a girlfriend. 

They will try anything possible to escape their yard. 

Many can even climb very tall fences. This can cause your Labradoodle to become lost or even hit by a car.

Neutering your Labradoodle can help keep them at home more and out of trouble. 

Prevent any health issues. 

Many Labradoodles can develop health conditions from not being neutered. 

Common health issues seen in an intact male are testicular cancer and prostate issues.

These can develop as your dog gets older. 

Having your Labradoodle neutered will eliminate the chance of testicular cancer and decrease the formation of any prostate disease.

Prevent unwanted behaviors

Marking their territory and humping things is a behavior that can be hard to break.

Once your Labradoodle starts these behaviors, it can be almost impossible to get them to stop. 

Having your dog neutered will help decrease or eliminate them for doing these behaviors.

It is best to have them neutered before they start, as sometimes, once they start these behaviors, it is hard to correct. 

What aftercare is needed after surgery

After your Labradoodle’s surgery, there are some things that you need to do to help them recover quickly. 

These are:

  • Some vet offices will let you take your dog home the same day as surgery is done, others want to keep the Labradoodle dog overnight.
  • Keep your Labradoodle inside for 2 weeks after surgery. Only let them go outside to potty and on a very short walk while on a leash. 
  • Keep your Labradoodle calm and quiet and not allow them to run and jump around.  
  • Make sure that your Labradoodle cannot lick at their incision. You may have to put a cone of shame on your dog to help prevent them from getting to their incision.
  • Inspect their incision each day and let your vet know as soon as you notice any problems, smells, or discharge.
  • Do not bath your Labradoodle for 10 to 14 days after surgery
  • Notify your vet immediately if your Labradoodle is lethargic, not wanting to eat, vomiting, or having diarrhea or loose stool.

If you see any problems, let your veterinarian know right away; if you do not follow all your vet’s aftercare instructions, your Labradoodle can have complications.

Make sure that your Labradoodle receives any pain medications and antibiotics that your vet has prescribed to them after the procedure. 

The pain medication may only be needed for a day or two, but some dogs will need pain medication for a few days while they recover. 

An easy way to tell if your Labradoodle is painful is to monitor their activity.

If your Labradoodle is not active, they are probably painful

Just because your Labradoodle feels great and wants to be active, they should still be calm and quiet for 14 days after surgery.  

Is surgery risky? 

No surgery is without risk. 

Your veterinarian will examine your Labradoodle before surgery. 

Your Labradoodle will be placed under general anesthesia and will be monitored with monitoring equipment for the whole surgery. 

During your dog’s surgery, a veterinary technician will monitor your Labradoodle the whole time. 

Many veterinary surgeries have a whole team of people working on your Labradoodle not just your vet. 

This starts from before surgery to recovery to being discharged from the hospital. 

Your vet will ask that you not feed your Labradoodle after 10 pm the night before.

This helps prevent your Labradoodle from vomiting during their surgery from the anesthesia. 

Make sure that you follow these pre-op instructions and anything else that your vet requires for your Labradoodle to have a successful surgery.

How much Does Spaying or Neutering Your Labradoodle Cost?

The cost of spaying or neutering your Labradoodle will all depend on where you live. 

Vets in a bigger city will charge a little more than a vet in the country. 

Many other factors may affect the cost.

Most veterinarians recommend pre-operative bloodwork be run on your Labradoodle before surgery. 

This will check liver and kidney function before surgery. They will also give your Labradoodle pre and post-op pain medications. 

These are all added expenses to the cost of surgery. 

Vets highly recommend that you have pre-op bloodwork done even in very young Labradoodle.

Your Labradoodle could have been born with a congenital disability that could cause severe to fatal results if not caught before surgery. 

While it is not very common, it does happen.

Some dogs develop a little slower and may not handle anesthesia as well. 

If any abnormalities are noticed on your dog’s bloodwork, your veterinarian may adjust their anesthesia plan accordingly or even use a different kind of anesthesia altogether. 

For Labradoodle with a liver or kidney defect, or if their lab values are not in the proper range, your vet will choose a different type of anesthesia. 

Most anesthetic drugs are broken down in your dog’s liver and filtered out of the body by their kidneys. 

If these organs are not functioning properly or not fully, then it is best to use an anesthetic drug metabolized by their lungs or not perform the procedure at all.   

There are also added costs for overweight Labradoodles, currently pregnant dogs, or dogs going through their heat cycle.

This is because it takes a little more time and is much more labor-intensive, especially if your vet is also trying to perform a c-section and save these baby puppy lives.  

 There are low-cost clinics that can do the procedure at a discounted rate. 

These clinics often receive grants and funds from the state to help offset the cost of the procedure. 

This is one reason that they do not have to charge as much for the procedure as a regular veterinary clinic. 

Low-cost clinics may also have minimal monitoring equipment and usually do not do surgery on large breeds or overweight patients. 

Final Thoughts

There are many different pros and cons when you choose to spay and neuter your Labradoodle. 

Your vet can help you determine the best time for your pet. 

Many vets will recommend that you spay your dog between 5 and 15 months of age. 

Delaying the spay can lead to mammary cancer, pyometra, or other health issues. 

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