Having your puppy spayed is by far the best way to ensure that we combat the problem of unwanted dogs. There are a huge number of healthy dogs put to sleep each year in America and an even greater number waiting in Shelters to be adopted. Much of the trauma that these animals go through would have spared if only we took a more responsible view regarding the age to have puppies spayed.
Puppies are sexually mature at around six months old. From this time on a bitch can become pregnant and have her own litter of puppies, despite the fact that she will still seem like a puppy to you. Therefore, if we wish to keep the overpopulation of dogs to a minimum, the best age for puppies to be spayed would be before they are six months old. This should be before the puppy comes on heat for the first time.
Not only is this the best age to have puppies spayed from the perspective of controlling the dog population, it is also better for the dog on medical grounds. You will have reduced the risk of your dog suffering from mammary adenocarcinoma by about 98% when she is older.
Whether there is a limit regarding there being too young an age to have puppies spayed is a much discussed subject. The American Medical Veterinary Association now advocates the spaying of female puppies from as early as 7 weeks. There are many other reputable organizations who agree with the AMVA on this decision including The Humane Society of the United States and The Kennel Club of the United States.
There has been years of research into the subject and findings have been contra to previous beliefs. It was thought in the past that operating so early in life could cause the dog problems in later years. It has now been proved that there are no medical contraindications for the procedure at this age regarding either behavior or physical well being. Many veterinarians however, will still not agree to the procedure at such an early age and are still of the opinion that the best age to have puppies spayed is at around six months, just prior to first season. Veterinarians who are involved with The Humane Society of the United States are particularly supportive of early age spaying if it means that the animal can be adopted from a shelter rather than euthanized. Another rule for some is the weight of the puppy. Some will only spay if the animal weighs at least two pounds.
The majority of specialists will say that the ideal age to have puppies spayed would be at six months. In some cases this can be reduced for an early age spay from as young as 7 weeks. Either way, the important issue is that you do have your puppy spayed. This will be one step closer to helping reduce unwanted pregnancies and save the trauma that unwanted dogs have to end.