Does Neutering A Dog Calm Them Down?
Many owners wonder if neutering a dog will calm them down. The answer depends on how their dog behaves normally and what kind of expectations they have for their dog after he is neutered.
It is normal for all dogs to be playful and rambunctious when they are puppies. They will not normally have good manners or behave well unless you train them. Dogs can go on acting like this and having lots of playful energy until they are two or three years old. This is true whether a dog is neutered or not. This is simply part of being young and feeling good. If you want your puppy or young dog to behave well and to stop any behavior problems such as chewing on furniture or jumping on people, you will usually have to train for those things. Neutering your dog will not solve those problems.
However, if your male dog is coming in contact with female dogs when they are in heat and becoming over-excited at this time, then neutering him will definitely make a difference in his behavior. Neutering him will remove his testicles so he will be unable to produce any testosterone. He will stop having interest in the female reproductive cycle. So, if you have problems with your male dog’s behavior because he is too interested in female dogs, then yes, neutering him will calm him down, permanently.
Unfortunately, there are some unintended health consequences from neutering male dogs. Neutering a male dog can increase his risk of certain cancers such as hemangiosarcoma, osteosarcoma, transitional cell carcinoma, and prostatic adenocarcinoma. It can also increase his risk of hypothyroidism and autoimmune thyroiditis. And it can make him more susceptible to hip dysplasia and cranial cruciate rupture. And, a male dog may be more at risk for diabetes mellitus if he is neutered.
Your male dog will have a reduced risk of testicular and prostate cancer, however, though these cancers are not common.
So, you can see that there is more to consider than just your dog’s behavior.
Neutered dogs are also more likely to gain extra weight, due in part to a slowed metabolic rate that results from the change in hormones.
Neutering your male dog will calm him down if he spends any time with female dogs when they are in heat. Otherwise, it will not do much to alter crazy puppy behavior or behavior that is due to the dog being untrained. Before neutering your dog you should weigh the health consequences involved. Sometimes it makes more sense to work on training issues or to separate your dog from females when they are in heat.
- Difficulty breathing
- Exercise intolerance
- Straining to urinate
- Straining while defecating
- Urinating more often, but only small amounts
If your dog is showing any of these symptoms you need to see your vet. Tests should be done to find out if your dog has cancer and what kind of cancer it might be.
Your vet will need to have a complete health history for your dog as well as making a physical exam of your dog. Your dog will need to have a rectal exam so your vet can check the dog’s urethra, parts of the bladder, and the prostate gland in the male. X-rays will be needed to see if the tumor has spread to any other places in your dog’s body. Urinalysis and blood tests will also be needed. Depending on the kind of technology your vet has available, there are also some other tests that can be done to measure the bladder tumor and identify exactly where it is. You may need to arrange to see a specialist or visit a university veterinary college for some of these tests.
Your vet will discuss treatment options with you or he or she may refer you to a cancer specialist. There are several different ways of treating bladder cancer in dogs. If the tumor is limited to a small area then surgery is often recommended. Chemotherapy is another option. Drug therapy is another option. The drug Feldene, a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory also known as piroxicam, has been used with some success in treating transitional cell carcinoma.
Bladder cancer is life-threatening unless it is treated. If it is not treated the tumor can block the urinary tract and your dog will not be able to urinate. This alone could kill him. This kind of cancer is also very likely to spread to other parts of the body. About half the time this kind of cancer is diagnosed, it has already spread to other parts of the body. Your dog’s ability to overcome bladder cancer will depend on where the tumor is located, whether it has spread, and what kind of treatment your dog can take and how effective it is. Some dogs can live more than a year after diagnosis with the right treatment.