As we've always said, here at CDK9 Raw we are driven out of the ongoing health and welfare of our dogs (and cats!).
Since we began this journey almost two years go, we've been overjoyed with the results we've seen from a combination of increasing scientific research and education around the power of appropriate nutrition for our pets.
Nutrition is one of the key aspects that can improve the health and wellbeing of our companions, however there are others that play a vital role in the overall wellbeing of the population. For every loved, fur-ever family member, there are countless more stray, abandoned, surrendered and forgotten. Through our work and regular donations to shelters, we continually hear - there are too many to save.
These facilites whether government, independent or not-for-profit are bursting at the seams due to the results of irresponsible pet ownership and irresponsible breeding.
That's why for this week's blog we wanted to draw attention to the fact that July is NATIONAL DESEXING MONTH!
Before delving too deep, we'd like to make clear that we are not against the breeding of animals.
Dogs and cats have evolved today through the long process of careful and selective breeding. Harmful, unhealthy and dangerous traits were bred out in favour of healthy, helpful behaviours. And we are proud to call a host of responsible breeders part of our pack as their focus is the same as ours: the ongoing health and wellbeing of whatever breed or breeds they have fallen in love with (we just happened to fall in love with all of them!).
In addition, consider all the dogs who contribute greatly towards our human society and enjoy every moment they do so - Police K9s, Seeing-Eye dogs, Therapy dogs, Autism Assistance Dogs, Psychiatric Service dogs, Seizure Response dogs and more. This is how it’s supposed to be.
Somewhere along the line though some of us lost sight of the loving relationship and treated dogs as a pure commodity. While breed organisations and educating buyers comes a long way, an irresponsible minority still takes part in what could be described as industrialised breeding. Puppy and kitten farms where welfare and wellbeing of animals is disregarded completely is a large contributor to the overpopulation crisis we have today.
Did you know?
- One unspayed female cat and her offspring can produce 420,000 kittens within 7 years
- One unspayed female dog and her offspring can produce 97,0000 puppies in the space of 7 years
Regardless of how many amazing adoptive paw-rents there are out there, there will never be enough homes for these amounts of puppies and kitties.
WHAT IS DESEXING?
Desexing, or neutering, refers to a surgical procedure that removes the animal’s sex organs resulting in them being unable to reproduce. It is generally accepted as a low-risk, relatively straightforward procedure which - performed correctly by a veterinarian, is done under anesthetic and will not cause undue discomfort or pain.
Plus, apart from population control, desexing has been shown to have other benefits, such as:
- Reduction in diseases and illnesses such as mammary cancers and prostrate problems
- Preventing roaming behavior (and therefore reducing the chance of loss or injury)
- Longer lives, which has been shown by research
However, it is worth noting that not everybody is comfortable with the idea of having an animal’s sex organs entirely removed and there is growing interest in alternatives. For females, tubal ligation is a procedure whereby the Fallopian tubes are cut or blocked to permanently prevent pregnancy. They will continue to have normal hormone production, heat cycles and be receptive to males during the cycle. Another alternative for females is an ovarioectomy (OVE), which removes just the ovaries, leaving the uterus in place. This does remove the hormone production but is considered a less complicated surgery.
For males, it is possible to perform a vasectomy, where the vas deferens are tied or injected with a polymer gel. Just like with humans, this is a safe and effective procedure but, with dogs it is pretty rarely performed. A vasectomy will leave the testes intact and allow for the normal production of hormones, which may be a preferable outcome for some owners.
These desexing alternatives are much more commonly used in Europe and do not appear readily available among a majority of Australian veterinarians unfortunately. However, when considering your options this National Desexing Month, we would urge you to speak to your vet about the alternatives.
Throughout July, pet owners are eligible for low-cost desexing procedures at participating veterinary surgeries. For more information, check out the National Desexing Network at https://ndn.org.au/
Please share to get the word out there and raise awareness for this important month!