When To Spay A Border Collie? The #1 Best Time To Spay
Do you have a female Border Collie that you’re considering spaying? If so, then you’re probably wondering exactly when to spay a Border Collie, how much it can cost to spay her, what the pros and cons of the procedure are, what the benefits and risks are, amongst other things.
These are just a few of the questions that we’ll be going through and answering in this article, so that you can get a more in-depth understanding of the process, and come out much wiser.
Once you have made up your mind however, make sure to reach out to your licensed veterinarian to add on to this knowledge, and get an expert opinion and advice before following through on such an important decision.
What Is Spaying?
Spaying involves surgically removing the female dogs reproductive organs, including the ovaries, uterus and fallopian tubes, and is the most effective way to prevent a Border Collie female from becoming pregnant. It’s the female equivalent of neutering or castration in male dogs.
Spaying is done under general anesthesia, and although not necessarily too costly, is somewhat intrusive and invasive.
It’s carried out by making an incision below the belly button first, and then removing either only the ovaries or the ovaries and uterus altogether.
The process is fairly straightforward, very common, relatively low risk, and shouldn’t take much time to complete if your veterinarian is skilled enough.
With that said, spaying your Border Collie has it’s pros and cons, and should be done only at a time that is safe and beneficial for your animal.
When To Spay A Border Collie: The Best Time.
Over the years, there have been several debates on when the best time/age to spay a dog is.
Animal rescue groups and some veterinarians, advocate early spaying for several reasons, including the fact that an early surgery is less costly, is a faster and more convenient process and is less damaging and easier to recover from.
Recent studies indicate that delaying the procedure until a dog is at least five months old may benefit the animal in the long run, and generally speaking, you’d not want to spay your dog too late after its first or second heat cycle, at most.
Thus, the best age to spay a Border Collie, is roughly around the 6 months of age mark. If possible, before the first heat cycle and not later than their second.
Older Border Collie dogs can still be spayed, but it’s a bit more risky. They need to be healthy enough to withstand the anesthesia as well a possibly longer than average healing period.
What Is The Cost Of Spaying A Border Collie?
The cost of spaying a dog in general, varies based on the size of the dog, where you live and the veterinarian’s fees for anesthesia and pain medications.
The price might also change if there are complications that occur before or after the procedure, but generally speaking, the cost of spaying a Border Collie that is not in heat, can be around $200 to $400 with some lower cost clinics charging up to $200.
In heat pups can cost between $25 and $100 higher (as a rough estimate), because the organs might be more swollen and the risk when carrying out the operation is a bit higher.
Some dogs may not react well to anesthesia and need an alternative sedation method and some dogs can develop complications that can cause additional post-surgical costs, so the price might vary a bit there too.
Benefits Of Spaying Your Border Collie
Some of the main benefits and reasons you would want to spay your Border Collie, include:
- Preventing unwanted pregnancies.
- Spaying completely eliminates any risk of future ovarian and uterine cancers, which are common in older dogs or dogs that never had any puppies.
- Decrease in likelihood of mammary cancers, as the ovaries produce the hormones that can trigger it in older dogs.
- Eliminates chances of other infections and diseases of the reproductive organs from happening.
- May reduce aggressive behavior of your dog towards others and it makes it a lot easier for your dog to participate in playgroups, day cares or dog parks.
- You get rid of your pups heat cycle, which happens every 6 months.
- Spayed dogs tend to live longer on average. Anywhere from 1-3 years more than intact pets.
Cons Of Spaying Your Border Collie
Just like there are pros of spaying your Border Collie, there are also cons of doing so. Some of the cons of spaying your Collie include:
- Invasive, open surgery procedure that’s not reversible. Removing a whole organ is not a walk in the park.
- Should not be done outside of the first 6 months of your pups life. Time is an real factor here and the later it’s done, the worse.
- Positive behavioral changes are never guaranteed as a result of spaying.
- Change in hormone levels. Estrogen supplement might be needed after surgery.
- Metabolism slowdown. As of result of the procedure, your pup might have a metabolism slowdown which can lead to some weight gain at worst.
- Depression. Your pup may become depressed, as her primal need to bare puppies won’t be able to be met any longer.
Risks Of Spaying Your Border Collie
No procedure that is as intrusive as open surgery to remove an entire organ, comes without its risks. Fortunately, since the reproductive organs of your pup aren’t vital, extreme complications are not very likely.
With that said, some of the risks of spaying your Border Collie are:
- Potential post surgical infections that can be deadly.
- Pain, swelling and scarring that can lead to complications.
- Possible hernias.
- Possible Seromas.
- Spay incontinence as a result of hormone suppression.
These are just some of the risks of spaying your Border Collie. Make sure to speak to your licensed veterinarian, for more details on the potential risks of spaying your Border Collie.
Alternatives To Spaying A Border Collie
If you don’t like the idea of spaying your Border Collie pup for whatever reason, then don’t worry because there are alternatives (albeit less effective).
One alternative is tubal ligation, which consists of permanently blocking the fallopian tubes. It’s considered a permanent form of sterilization, that is less intrusive and aggressive. It’s also less expensive but also less effective than complete removal of course.
Another alternative for you pup, would be chemical sterilization by the use and injection of contraceptive drugs. This is the least expensive, least intrusive method, but it’s also the least effective one.
Will Spaying Calm A Border Collie Down?
Spaying your female Border Collie will eliminate the heat-producing hormones in her body and might help prevent any unwanted behavior, but there are no guarantees that you’ll see a long lasting change in behavior solely because of the spaying procedure.
While it may not change your female dog’s personality, you might find that your Border Collie pup will be easier to train, and socializing with other pets will be a lot easier since the process can reduce the cyclical behavioral problems, like aggression, restlessness, and excessive barking.
Female Border Collies can also be hyperactive, restless, and aggressive because of the hormonal changes that occur during the heat cycle, which would be somewhat suppressed as a result of spaying.
Spaying your female pup, is not an easy decision, as it is a surgical procedure that comes with its advantages and disadvantages.
If you are looking to know when to spay a Border Collie, the general advice is to do so within the first 6 months, before the first heat cycle.
As always, there are risks both by spaying, and by not spaying your Collie. In this post, we went over a few of them and so you should weigh out the pros and cons against each other and come to your own conclusions on exactly what route to take with your dog.
Generally speaking, short term complications on this type of operation are fairly low. Its a very common, simple procedure, and the pros generally outweigh the cons in the long run, which is why many Border Collie owners choose spaying their pup versus not doing so.
With that said, always remember to consult your licensed veterinarian before going forth with any life changing decision.