There are many benefits to spaying or neutering, both for you, your pet and the community overall. Neutering can reduce spraying or marking in males, especially if done earlier in life. It can also reduce the urge in males to seek out females in heat, which reduces the chance of your pet running away or getting hit by a car. Spaying and neutering can also lead to a longer, healthier life because your pet will be less likely to develop testicular and mammary tumors, prostate disease and pyometra, a deadly infection of the uterus.

Spaying and neutering is also the best and most effective way to end pet homelessness. There are too many pets born in the United States and not enough homes willing or able to take them all in. These dogs and cats either end up homeless living on the street, or in area shelters that may lack the resources to care for the sheer volume of animals that need their help. By spaying and neutering you are part of the solution to ending pet homelessness and making sure every pet born can find a loving home.

SpayToday typically recommends traditional spay and neuter, but does offer limited sterilization options that are considered "hormone sparing". Please see the FAQs about hysterectomy for more information about each of these options.

Yes, if you don’t want the tattoo, you will have to go elsewhere for the spay/neuter surgery. (Unless your dog is having a hysterectomy.)
The purpose of the tattoo is to provide positive identification that the pet has been surgically altered. This will help prevent unnecessary surgery in the future if the pet should ever find its way into the shelter system.

All dogs receive an injection of pain medication that lasts approximately 24 hours after surgery. Some dogs may need additional pain control beyond this time. We also provide an additional 3 days of pain medication for each dog. Cats do not go home with pain medication because of the long-lasting injectiont hey receive at the time of surgery and the difficulty of giving most cats oral medication at home.

Acute Cat Pain Scale (from Colorado State University) Click here.

Acute Dog Pain Scale (from Colorado State University) Click here.

Any anesthetic procedure carries some risk but SpayToday uses high quality drugs and provides monitoring by trained veterinary staff during and after surgery to reduce the chance of anesthetic/surgical death.

Other issues include:

Females:
Incision site seroma–buildup of fluid around the incision, sometimes will leak bloody fluid from the incision, not serious but should be examined by a veterinarian; often due to too much activity after surgery.
Herniation of abdominal fat through the incision site-rare and often due to too much activity after surgery.
Incision site infection-uncommon, if you note green/yellow discharge from the incision, please call us.

Males:
Scrotal hematoma–buildup of blood within the scrotal sac; bruising around the area; may or may not be painful; often due to licking and/or too much activity after surgery.
Incision site infection-uncommon, if you note green/yellow discharge from the incision, please call us.

 

Female cats: An incision is made on the abdomen. Both ovaries and the uterus are removed through this incision. The incision is closed using 2 layers of absorbable suture. The skin is then sealed with a layer of surgical tissue adhesive. No suture removal is necessary. Tattoo ink is applied in or near the incision. The tattoo helps others identify that this animal has been spayed.
Female rabbits: An incision is made on the abdomen. Both ovaries and the uterus are removed through this incision. The incision is closed using 2 layers of absorbable suture. The skin is then sealed with a layer of surgical tissue adhesive. No suture removal is necessary. Tattoo ink is applied in or near the incision. The tattoo helps others identify that this animal has been spayed.
Female dogs: An incision is made on the abdomen. Both ovaries and the uterus are removed through this incision. The incision is closed using 2 or 3 layers of absorbable suture. The skin is then sealed with a layer of surgical tissue adhesive. No suture removal is necessary. Tattoo ink is applied in or near the incision. The tattoo helps others identify that this animal has been spayed.

**NOTE-in many puppies under 5 months and some older, in heat dogs, the veterinarian may elect to remove only the ovaries (ovariectomy). This surgery is less complicated in puppies and safer in dogs in heat. The uterus is evaluated and if it is not considered to be normal a standard surgery (ovariohysterectomy) will be done. Ovariectomy removes all hormone stimulation of the uterus and does not result in any increased risk of later problems.

Male cats: Both testicles are removed through an incision made in the scrotum. There are no sutures; the scrotum will simply heal and decrease in size within 1-2 weeks. Larger/older cats may have more swelling making it appear that the testicles are still present….they are not! Tattoo ink is applied to a small incision on the cat's belly. The tattoo helps others identify that this animal has been neutered.

Male rabbits: Each testicle is removed through a separate incision in the scrotum. The incisions are sealed with surgical tissue adhesive. No suture removal is necessary.Tattoo ink is applied to a small area in front of the scrotum. The tattoo helps others identify that this animal has been neutered.

Male dogs: Both testicles are removed through an incision made in or near the scrotum. In young/small dogs the incision may be closed with suture or tissue adhesive. In large dogs the incision may be sutured under the skin, then sealed with surgical tissue adhesive. Tattoo ink is applied in or near the incision. The tattoo helps others identify that this animal has been neutered.

(Video courtesy of Dr. Mackie-Animal Birth Control Los Angeles)

Cats receive an injection of a combination of anesthetic, tranquilizer and pain medication, females receive an endotracheal (breathing) tube and gas anesthetic until the surgery has been completed. Males receive only the injection but the surgery is completed while the anesthetic effect of this injection is in full force.
Dogs receive a preanesthetic injection of tranquilizer and pain medication then another injection to make them sleepy enough to place an endotracheal tube. They are maintained on gas anesthetic until the surgery has been completed.
Rabbits receive an injection of tranquilizer and pain medication then are given gas anesthesia via a special breathing tube made for rabbits called a V-gel. Rabbits may also receive an IV catheter.

All surgical procedures are performed by graduate veterinarians, licensed by the state of Colorado.
Our primary veterinarian and medical director has extensive experience in spay and neuter and oversees all veterinarians and medical staff. She also sits on the Colorado State Board of Veterinary Medicine.

SpayToday is a nonprofit organization with the goal of making basic veterinary care affordable and accessible to all pets owners so we can honor the human/animal bond, improve pet health and prevent unwanted and unplanned litters of cats and dogs from ending up homeless.

We specialize in spay and neuter and are able to perform a high volume of surgeries daily with a highly trained and efficient staff. We have very low overhead and unlike a private family veterinarian, we only need to keep supplies on hand for the specialized service of spay and neuter.