DOG HEALTH AND MEDICINE

January 2013 – Full Issue PDF

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What We Will – and Wont – Do for Our Dogs

Cathy Park of Worcester, Massachusetts, is more than a trooper. Shes a lifesaver. If she werent willing to inject her beloved dog Bunson with a needle every single day, he wouldnt be alive. The beautiful white Labrador Retriever has chronic kidney failure, and without the extra fluid she gets into him by way of a daily shot, he would have long ago succumbed to his disease. But here he is still, perkier than he had been for some time, enjoying car rides and lolling around the house.

Male Neutering: Maybe You Shouldnt

The directive seems simple enough. Spay and neuter your pet dog by the age of 6 months or so, and not only will you be reducing the risk for various medical conditions, you will also be playing an important role in canine population control. For female dogs, the evidence for that line of thinking is clear and irrefutable. Dogs spayed before their first estrus, or heat, have only a 0.5 percent risk for developing cancer…

Neutering May Increase the Chance For More Than Certain Cancers

Along with appearing to increase the odds for bladder cancer, prostate cancer, bone cancer, and cancer that attacks the spleen, some research suggests that neutering also appears to raise the risk in dogs for rupture of the cranial cruciate ligament (similar to the anterior cruciate ligament in a persons knee).