By: Lorrie Ward | Category: Pets | Issue: May 2012
The staff of Family Animal Medicine (L to R): (back row) Mariann Stanley, Aaron Goldesberry, Katie Knoten, Micki DeYong, Karen Drosos, (front row) Dr. Gena Guerriero, Wanda Cline with Jayla Nobles, and Dr. Jenny Nobles with Jaxon Nobles. (Not pictured: Becky Vasey)
If you have a pet that needs to be spayed or neutered and you’re looking for a caring, safe and affordable place to have the procedure performed, there is still time to take advantage of the first Neighborhood Neuter event at Family Animal Medicine in Owasso. This event will run in April and May every year and offers a discount on a comprehensive spaying and neutering package, including pre-op lab work, hospitalization, anesthesia, and medications.
Dr. Jenny Nobles and Dr. Gena Guerriero of Family Animal Medicine concentrate specifically on pet population control, pointing to statistical evidence provided by The National Council on Pet Population. Some of the most astounding statistics show that anywhere from six to eight million cats and dogs enter shelters each year, and of that number, three to four million (half) are euthanized. The American Humane Association reports that these huge numbers are caused by three main factors: people regarding pets as disposable or inconvenient, people choosing to buy pets from breeders rather than adopting, and irresponsible breeding practices by pet breeders themselves.
In addition to the fact that spaying and neutering helps control the number of stray and roaming animals who eventually find their way into such shelters, Dr. Guerriero and Dr. Nobles also point to the health benefits of sterilizing pets and emphasize that the earlier the procedure is done, the better. “Research has shown that in females, every heat cycle increases their chance to have mammary carcinomas and pyometra, conditions similar to breast cancer and endometriosis in humans,” says Dr. Guerriero. “While we are very interested in controlling the numbers of unwanted pets, we are also interested in the health of the individual animal.”
Dr. Nobles also points to the behavioral advantages of having pets neutered as early as possible, especially when it comes to males. “If the male is neutered before four to six months of age, he is less likely to develop bad habits such as marking and aggression,” she says. “He is less likely to jump fences to find a female in heat, and a spayed female is less likely to roam as well.”
This instinct to roam is one of the reasons some pets show up in shelters – they become lost and simply cannot find their way home. Sadly, this contributes to the fact that only 30 percent of the dogs and far fewer cats (only 2 to 5 percent) that arrive at shelters are reclaimed by their owners, according to the study by The National Council of Pet Population. To help increase the number of pets reunited with loving families, Family Animal Medicine is offering a discount on microchip insertion during a spay or neuter procedure, while the pet is anesthetized for surgery.
Dr. Guerriero and Dr. Nobles hope for a great response from the community for this first-year event and encourage everyone to mark their calendars for next year as well if they plan to acquire a new pet. “The numbers in these shelters are huge,” says
Dr. Guerriero. “We hope to do our part to help control the number of strays and roamers and the pet population overall.”