Published on: January 31, 2020
Author: Lauren Piandes

Wow, can you believe it’s already February? February is recognized as National Spay & Neuter Awareness Month! With spring fast approaching, this pet awareness month encourages pet owners to have their animals or furry family members spayed or neutered before the spring and summer.  During these months most animal shelters have a hard time managing the over-abundance of puppies and kittens needing forever homes.

Most rescue and shelter organizations have a pre-adoption policy on spaying and neutering pets; and by going through with the alteration procedure, you will be saving hundreds, even thousands, of potentially unwanted puppies and kittens from potentially unhappy endings.


Infographic provided by The Humane Society of Greenwood


Overpopulation for pets leads to many crowded cages, and as many as 2.7 million healthy, adoptable cats and dogs are euthanized in shelters every year due to this. These numbers are not just animals born on the street, but babies from beloved family pets who had accidental litters. According to the ASPCA the best time to prevent this is spaying and neutering when puppies are 6-9 months old and kittens as young as 8 weeks in some cases. These are around the times cats and dogs can go into heat and can become pregnant!


Infographic provided by The Humane Society of Greenwood


Besides preventing overpopulation, there are other amazing benefits that come with spaying/neutering your pet. Altered pets tend to be healthier, happier, and show fewer behavioral issues as they grow older. Spaying a female pet helps to prevent uterine infections, neutering males deters aggression, and both prevent certain types of cancers related to reproductive organs. Additionally, USA Today reported in 2013 that neutered male dogs live 18% longer and spayed female dogs live 23% longer than the average, intact pet.

It is also highly beneficial for your community if your pet is spayed or neutered. During heat cycles in females and males they tend to be much more vocal and urinate/spray frequently to mark their territory, which means outside and inside the house. This can cause damage to local fauna, disrupt wildlife, and create a nasty stink in your home. What’s worse is animals in heat tend to roam in search of a potential new mate. This type of behavior is yet another way to contribute to overpopulation in shelters and rescues, and/or cause your pet serious bodily harm.


Affordable Options

Some may be asking but is it costly to spay or neuter my pet? To that, we say this: it’s much less expensive to have your pet altered than to take care of multiple litters. Some shelters and rescues may offer a discount card for spaying and neutering in your adoption package. If your organization has not provided this resource to you, never fear! Friends of Animals and PetSmart Charities both partner with local veterinarians to offer Spay/Neuter Certificates . Simply enter your zip code and you’ll be given the contact information for veterinary offices near you that offer discounted rates for spay and neuter procedures.


Steps to be a Proactive Pet Parent

Contact your veterinary to schedule a spay/neuter appointment for your pet and ask them for more information regarding the procedure, its benefits, and affordable routes of service. Do your part in preventing unwanted litters!

Show your rescue pet pride with our Rescue Collection on the PetLink store.