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Hi there,

We have a 6 month old male Labrador puppy called Reuben and are thinking about getting him neutered.

I just wanted a little bit of advice over conflicting advice on the web.

Reuben hasn't started cocking his leg yet. Do we have to wait until he does this before we get him done? Will it have any affect on this?

Also, we have been told that his fur may be affected once he is nuetered which I am concerned about because he has such a lovely coat.

Many thanks in advance.

I appreciate any advice on this matter :)

Kerry
 

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The general advice is to wait until dogs are physically and mentally mature, so ideally wait until they are around 18 months old.

There seems to be growing advice to keep males entire unless there is a real need to castrate them ie hormones are genuinely causing problems.

The argument that castration will "calm them down" or erradicate all sorts of behavioural problems is in many cases a myth and the best way to deal with the majority of behavioural problems is through training.

Less confident dogs benefit from keeping the testosterone that would be lost if they were castrated and in some cases castration has caused more harm than it has done good.
 

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I agree with Coco-Loco. Sage words.

We went through this with our chap. Having read the literature and the veterinary research we decided that there were no compelling reasons to subject him to a surgical procedure with all the attendant risks. His behaviour is very good and we manage leg-cocking with a firm 'leave it' followed by a treat. Works fine.

The only problem that we have is that our chap is attacked quite frequently by other male dogs. He usually comes off best so he doesn't mind but it was a worry at first when we thought that the attacks might cause emotional problems. It could be that the testosterone that he is producing causes other dogs to react aggressively to him. On the other hand a few weeks ago we talked to somebody who castrated an entire dog solely because other dogs were attacking him. The other dogs still attacked the poor thing after the operation.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you both for your advice.

To be honest, I think he is just going through puberty so hopefully should calm down once he gets a little bit older.

He is great around other dogs and attends kennel club training so hopefully behaviour wise, we should be fine. (We did just look after our friends 5 year old black lab and there was a lot of mounting going on! Reuben obviously showing who's boss!) Definitely no confidence issues!

Yes Mumbly, Reuben was attacked by a collie not so long back and in training there is a collie that acts quite aggresively towards him. The trainer thinks because Reuben was attacked by the same breed, the collie may be picking up how anxious he is around him and acting upon it.

Could you advise at what age we should be expecting Reuben to raise his leg?

Thanks

Kerry :)
 

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Reuben hasn't started cocking his leg yet.
He may never. Or he may lift his leg when out but not in the garden. (My first dog was like that) Cocking his leg is for scent marking, "Hi ladies, I'm here!"

Castration can calm down an over sexed dog, always chasing the bitches, but nothing else. But as others have said 18 months is the age I would be thinking with a dog.

Regards, John
 

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I would definitely NOT recommend chemical castration such as Suprelorin. Several people that I know of have reported very serious side effects, including an ex member on here who's dog was so seriously affected that it had to be put to sleep. Her vet even tried to remove the implant, but found that it dissolves into a jelly like compound making it impossible to remove everything. To me it is simply not safe!

Regards, John
 

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Bruno not very good at lifting his leg, he has a rather funny elongated body pose when peeing:cheesygrin:, bless him he is coming up eleven so not expecting him to change now, but he certainly pee's for england and the garden does pong of wee wee, reminder to myself to get the jeyes out and sweeten the place up a bit;).

June
 

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Bruno not very good at lifting his leg, he has a rather funny elongated body pose when peeing:cheesygrin:,
Could this be called a 'man lunge'??:cheesygrin:

Tucks can **** his leg and does. He marks sometimes nowadays but the cocking and marking didn't start until he was about 2 years old and he was neutured by the rescue at about a year old.

Tucker enjoys a good 'man lunge' most of the time though :)
 

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Kerry,

If Reuben is already a bit nervous then castration could make him more nervous.

Not sure about your trainer by the way: can dogs really distinguish between breeds?

Collies are fairly well know for - shall we say - being on the snappy end of the spectrum (think herding sheep) and Reuben is still a young chap so he is a natural target for more aggressive dogs. I doubt that that has anything to do with his prior encounters with dogs of the same breed.

Anyway, this research here:

http://www.naiaonline.org/pdfs/LongTermHealthEffectsOfSpayNeuterInDogs.pdf

And here:

https://www.avma.org/news/javmanews/pages/131101a.aspx

Influenced in our decision to adopt a wait and see approach to castration.

I'de be interested in how many owners on here have castrated their dogs and, if not, do you encounter aggression from other dogs? If so how do you manage the aggression?
 

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Could this be called a 'man lunge'??:cheesygrin:

Tucks can **** his leg and does. He marks sometimes nowadays but the cocking and marking didn't start until he was about 2 years old and he was neutured by the rescue at about a year old.

Tucker enjoys a good 'man lunge' most of the time though :)
:cheesygrin::cheesygrin:Not sure if I have seen a 'man lunge' :cheesygrin: but if that means man is about a foot taller [a foot longer in Bru's case when stretching out for a pee] then thats my boy;).

He can lift his leg a little sometimes but I think he worries about falling over and losing street cred:cool:.

Junex
 

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That sounds about right :cheesygrin:

It's the step up from a 'puppy squat' but not a venture into leg cocking. It's a long lean with one back leg forward, the other back as the underneath area lunges towards the ground to unload. The 'man' part is just to make Tucker feel grown up! :cheesygrin:
 
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I think Griffin started cocking his leg some time between 6 and 9 months. Everyone laughs at him because he cocks his leg so high that he often falls over. He's a clown!

I've heard that castrated males often get humped more by other dogs because they don't give off a male scent and it leads to a bit of confusion.

I have had a lot of people try to push me into castrating Griffin including veterinary nurses, trainers, dog warden but he is a nervous boy and our behaviourist has advised against it.

When I asked the vet at 11 months (after pressure from others) he said he would prefer to wait longer but would do it if I really insisted. Fortunately I held off.
 

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I've heard that castrated males often get humped more by other dogs because they don't give off a male scent and it leads to a bit of confusion.
Tucks is a castrated boy and he chooses a friend to hump when he has decided that he is too tired to concentrate on swimming anymore. They have been pretty, attractive girls or handsome older castrated males.
It's either time to head home when he starts up or time to walk rather than swim! He's never been humped himself that I can recall... and was told once not to consider Luna and never has again.
 

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We decided not to neuter our boy Baxter, he has turned out to be a very well balanced and well behaved little man. He has tried to hump the neutered males on occasion because to him "your neither male or female" I do know of a fellow friend walker who had his dog neutered at a very early age, six months I think, and he regrets doing it as he has just never grown up, the dog is 5 now. So I think if you go ahead maybe you should wait until he's a little older maybe 18 months. Good Luck with your decision :)
 

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We adopted our boy when he was 7 months and the previous owner had already had him neutered because he thought it was the responsible thing to do - however our dog is now at adolescence and having fear reactive issues to strangers and it has been suggested to me that he may possibly have been neutered too early.

We did however decide to neuter our older dog who we adopted at 5yrs who is extreamly nervous, because he was an ex stud and his frustration levels were so strong we felt the slight worsening of his nervousness was the lesser evil.

Like you I find the whole thing thoroughly confusing.
 

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Vets seem very keen to chop their bits off. Every time it's been a lady vet or nurse who's buffed off my concerns with "well you're male". They tell tales of tumours on testicles and cancer scaremongery which do make you question things. It is apparently a "cheap and easy operation" to perform. But they don't have to go through their life with no nuts!

I'm in the "leave them be" camp, unless there is a compelling reason to do otherwise.
Just because "the vet says so", isn't a good enough reason for me, I'm afraid.
 
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