Female in Season and causing problems !

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Whitchick
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Female in Season and causing problems !

Post by Whitchick » Mon May 19, 2008 5:20 am

Hi, can anyone help. I have taken a rescue yorkie, Mia. She is nearly 9 months old and has been with me for 3 months. I have another dog, yorkie/jack russell cross, Penny who I have had since a pup at 6 weeks.

The girls get on very well together and I've had no issues. Penny has just been through a season with no problems.

However, Mia, has come into season this weekend. And since she has she is humping Penny continuously and last night they very nearly came to blows. Penny is growling quite a bit at Mia, who takes absolutely no notice and pushes her luck to the limit !!!

Is this normal behaviour between two females when one is in season ? This is Mia's first (and last !) season. She has had fear issues and so I wanted to let her have her first season before spaying but I am concerned about the fact that the girls behaviour has changed and am hoping this is a temporary thing due to hormones - any advice would be VERY welcome !!!!!!!!

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Nettle
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Post by Nettle » Mon May 19, 2008 7:41 am

Yes it's normal.

If you feel the girls would be happier separated, separate them. If you feel the warning growls are not going to escalate into something else, carry on as you are.

Exercise them lots - tired dogs are less humpy! You don't have to go out if you can give them lots of running-around and game-palying in the garden.

Me and my dogs
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Post by Me and my dogs » Mon May 19, 2008 9:08 am

You have rescues and mixed breed females that haven't been altered? Maybe it's different over there but here our rescues know there are too many of the breed we are rescuing already. We don't want more pouring into our rescue or shelters so we make sure they are altered before they ever go out again.

Responsible rescue groups only adopt out AFTER the animal has been altered.

For what purpose would you NOT have them spayed? Here are a few things to look up:

Pyometra: http://www.familyvet.com/Dogs/Female.html

or

http://www.peteducation.com/article.cfm ... icleid=918

The old wives tale that a dog has to go into heat (season) before being altered is just that - an old wives tale.

As for is it normal to be bitchy when in heat? uh..... being a woman I feel safe to say this... is it normal for you or any other woman you know to be a little grumpy during PMS?

Should one of your dogs become pregnant (accidents happen, dogs get loose, etc) you might also look up Prolapsed uterus in dogs.
The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience. ~Eleanore Roosevelt

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Nettle
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Post by Nettle » Mon May 19, 2008 12:42 pm

Everyone is entitled to their opinion. However, everyone is NOT entitled to criticise with quite such vigour something such as keeping dogs entire, and certainly not with scaremongering.

There are fors and againsts with neutering dogs, both with physical health and behaviour, and it is an individual decision whether or not to keep dogs whole.

I keep entire dogs, and that is my choice. If others want to neuter theirs, that is also their choice. I would defend to the death anybody's right to make either choice for their animals.

Please understand that however passionately you feel about neutering everything, there are others who feel equally passionately about only neutering if it is better for that individual dog. There is no 'right' or 'wrong' to it.

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Mattie
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Post by Mattie » Mon May 19, 2008 4:48 pm

Me and my dogs wrote:
The old wives tale that a dog has to go into heat (season) before being altered is just that - an old wives tale.
Waiting until a ***** has their first season has many advantages, you know that their insides are working properly, I know of a ***** who has only every had 2 seasons, she is 9 years old. It also allows a ***** to mature both mentally and physically, I know mine have all matured when they had their first season. This was a big advantage for me, they didn't have the puppy sillyness.

Rescues in the UK do spay and neuter all the dogs that go through them, but early neutering and spaying does have disadvantages as well. With dogs they not only don't mature properly but the growth plates are often slow to close and the dogs grow taller than they should.

All owners can do is to research spaying and neutering before making theie decision, there are breeds which are recomended not to spay or neuter until they are 2 years old.

There are many loved dogs that are not neutered or spayed, have responsible owners who don't let them have the chance to mate so no unwanted puppies.
[url=http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v312/Nethertumbleweed/PIXIE.jpg][img]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v312/Nethertumbleweed/th_PIXIE.jpg[/img][/url]

Me and my dogs
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Post by Me and my dogs » Mon May 19, 2008 6:16 pm

I'm sorry if it comes across as "scare mongering" or criticizing w/ vigour but I know these things to be fact and sometimes the facts are hard to hear.

Call me crazy but I'm going to go w/ the science/health and yes, even BEHAVIOR reasons for spaying and neutering. Then there's also the mass numbers of dogs in shelters and dogs (and cats) that are euthanized each year because there are simply more dogs than there are humans that are looking to take them in.

Quote from Humane Society of the United States:
nationwide more than 3 million cats and dogs are euthanized in shelters. You might think that these are animals born in the streets or there is something "wrong" with them. But often they are the offspring of cherished family pets, even purebreds. Maybe someone's dog or cat got out just that one time or maybe the litter was intentional, but efforts to find enough good homes failed.
Still the result is homeless animals that have to be euthanized because there are more dogs and cats entering shelters than there are people willing to provide them with loving care
.
The only study I'm aware of that notes that waiting longer to NEUTER (not spay) was regarding large breed dogs and the issue of growth plate development. That would then mean a male, large breed dog, could be neutered at 1 yr to 2 yrs.

As for this quote:
Waiting until a ***** has their first season has many advantages, you know that their insides are working properly, I know of a ***** who has only every had 2 seasons, she is 9 years old. It also allows a ***** to mature both mentally and physically, I know mine have all matured when they had their first season. This was a big advantage for me, they didn't have the puppy sillyness.


Is there a study that backs any of that info up? A behaviorist or kennel club that backs that up?

I'm not aware of any study that has ever said that and would welcome the opportunity to learn something new.

In fact, w/out the distractions females have when they are in heat, or that males might experience while still intact, I find them easier to train and far better focused. In fact my dogs which have been demo dogs for obedience, agility and fly ball have all been neutered before 6 months of age (except for my chihuahua - he came to me at 9 years of age - got neutered, is not housetrained and on hand sigs for all his obedience).

Please feel free to check out any of the following sites that cover the actual FACTS about spaying and neutering. Additionally, please feel free to post links to anything you might find that's different.

http://www.nccn.net/~paleague/myths.htm

http://www.hsus.org/pets/pet_care/myths ... ering.html

http://www.hsus.org/pets/pet_care/why_y ... r_pet.html

BTW,

Before further criticism comes my way, I actually did search the net to try to find any really good valid reason NOT to spay or neuter a dog and this was the best, the very closest I could come:

http://www.feralcat.com/zanders.html

and I really made a sincere effort.

I mean, I believe in the old saying that a mind is like a parachute - works best when opened. So mine is open. If there are studies or facts that dispute anything I've said here I would like to be pointed to the links.

I love to learn new stuff!
The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience. ~Eleanore Roosevelt

Me and my dogs
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Post by Me and my dogs » Mon May 19, 2008 9:07 pm

A VERY IMPORTANT CORRECTION TO THE ABOVE

(and an example of how a typo can embarass a chihuahua)
In fact, w/out the distractions females have when they are in heat, or that males might experience while still intact, I find them easier to train and far better focused. In fact my dogs which have been demo dogs for obedience, agility and fly ball have all been neutered before 6 months of age (except for my chihuahua - he came to me at 9 years of age - got neutered, is not housetrained and on hand sigs for all his obedience).
The correction is he IS NOW housetrained and on hand sigs.....

(and while the chihuahua is a smart little fella he, thankfully, can't read - we leave the editing to my the Border mix - which explains a LOT)
The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience. ~Eleanore Roosevelt

emmabeth
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Post by emmabeth » Mon May 19, 2008 11:01 pm

Me and My Dogs...

Nettle and Mattie ARE very reputable behaviourists in their own rights.

There is research showing that there are plenty of negative side effects both to the physical and mental health of the dog (especially in prepubertal neutering). Most of this research though was not done from the point of view of researching neutering specifically so it occurs within articles about other subjects and as such is very hard to find online.

http://www.naiaonline.org/pdfs/LongTerm ... InDogs.pdf

This is a review article, covering quite a lot of information.

This article (Effects on Behaviour - Duffy) http://www.acc-d.org/2006%20Symposium%2 ... on%20I.pdf

Quite clearly shows that neutering does indeed negatively impact behaviour.

In any case, there is little point in castigating a poster for something which is now, too late to change. We all have to make decisions based on OUR experience and on looking at our own dogs - passing round useful information is a vital part of that - making sure that information is actually correct is an even MORE vital part of that.

For example from the first link you give, stating it gives actual facts.. I pulled out this little gem:

"Myth: A pet's behavior changes dramatically after surgery:

§ Fact: The only changes in behavior you'll see are positive ones! "

NOT a fact. Not at ALL. Firstly, you may well not see any positive changes in behaviour (say, does it cure humping? Not always - I have a neutered male here who won't just hump, he will mate and he will tie with a willing *****... say does it cure scent marking... not always, depends on the reason for the scent marking... say.. does it cure aggression.. not always, depends on the reason for the aggression). AND you may well see negative changes in behaviour, have a read of the link I pasted, behavioural effects..

Most of the articles for spay/neuter only tell half truths. Yes, older unneutered male dogs are at a higher risk of testicular cancer. But they don't tell you that the risk of an entire male dog DYING of testicular cancer is ridiculously LOW. Testicular cancer is extremely curable and spreads extremely slowly.
They tell you that spaying a ***** reduces the risk of mammary cancer.. it DOESNT remove that risk entirely (to do that, youd need to remove the mammary glands). Now im not saying mammary cancer is not a consideration, it is... but whether its a risk great enough to outweigh the negatives in neutering before the first season, I dont agree. Neutering after the first or second season STILL drastically reduces the risk of mammary cancer.

Do any of these spay/neuter articles mention the increased risks of prostate cancer, osteosarcoma, urinary incontinence in animals neutered before maturity? No.

Whitchick
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Post by Whitchick » Thu May 22, 2008 4:19 am

Me and My Dogs.

Firstly let me clarify. When I say Mia is a rescue dog, she is, but came direct from a family who could not keep her and had been neglecting her. I specify her as a rescue because she came to me with issues which we are working hard to rectify, so much the same as alot of rescue animals.

It has always been my intention to have both my girls spayed, I am not against it.

The reason I wanted to wait and let them have seasons is because I wanted them to be mature dogs. They are purely kept as pets, with no intentions of breeding them whatsover. My eldest dog Penny did not come into her first season until very late, she came into season just before her vets appointment to spay the second time and she is booked in next week to have her operation.

Mia has very real fear issues and when I got her she was a very timid dog. We have spent alot of time working with her and I'm happy to say that she improves day by day and is an absolute delight to have around. But because of her issues, we have been advised, both by our own trainer and having taken advice of the very experienced people on this forum. It was a choice we took to allow her to become mature before spaying.

Just wanted to add some clarity. I am all for spaying unless you are a breeder. And was purely posting the question for advice on female behaviours in season, since I've always had very good advice from the people like Emmabeth and others on the forum.

thistledown
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Post by thistledown » Thu May 22, 2008 5:03 am

What lucky dogs to have such a thoughtful owner Whitchick!

The spay/neuter issue is one that generates a lot of heat. As well as the question of whether to neuter there is the issue of when to neuter.

Many times on various forums I see members involved in rescue getting all shouty and capital-lettery putting their point of view. The thing is it is just a point of view, not a decree. Other people have different points of view, just as vehemently held, just as thoughtfully considered and unfortunately the pro-s/n viewpoint can often come across as stridently judgemental, which grates a bit tbh.

Personally I think rescues and owners will always have different agendas. Responsible owners know that they can avoid unwanted litters and so their decisions are based on health/behavioural issues alone. Rescues will always have the population control issue well in the forefront of their thinking which means decisions are not made purely on health/behavioural grounds.

Each owner has to steer their own course through all the advice and blather and choose what they feel is best for their dog.

Ocelot0411
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Post by Ocelot0411 » Thu May 22, 2008 7:46 am

Ah the voice of reason Thistledown :wink: Agreed. Its what;s best for your dog and depends on your circumstances. My ***** is entire at present but only a year old and very immature and still a little bit timid. I have no intention of breeding from her so will spay when the time is right for her. This time is not, in my view, yet here.

Me and my dogs
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Post by Me and my dogs » Mon May 26, 2008 11:40 pm

Whitchick,

Sorry if I came off too hard at first but you will have more settled dogs once they are altered. I work at a shelter in addition to doing behavior evaluatiions, consults and fostering for an Aussie rescue group so I see a lot of unwanted pets. Thanks for taking the rescue.

Emmabeth,

At the Animal Care conference a few weeks ago in my state the first article did come under some light discussion. I also forwarded it along to someone at UC Davis Shelter medicine dept since I was curious on their take on the situatiion.... then I realized it's graduation time so I wonder if I'll get any response in the near future.

The second article you posted just gives me a blank page both at home and at work (I actually hoped it was just due to my crappy home computer situation).

I wouldn't expect altering a dog to stop humping or marking - especially since I've known my share of females that are just as guilty of those behaviors (and the funniest thing I ever saw was a female terrier who backed her but up a tree just to mark it).

Do altered pets tend to roam less? Yes. There is evidence to that at any shelter in the U.S. Just last week I was at work on my day off (happens far too frequently) and in the male stray building w/ multiple dog runs there were 22 dogs - only two were altered. If a male can smell a female in heat several miles away and still has the urge to act on it he may become an expert at getting out of his yard. Then there are the females in heat that might go... uh.. trolling for lack of a better word.. to find their satisfaction.

As our pets live longer lives there are a lot of studies going on into the various health issues that seem to be coming with that.

Some believe our pets are experience more cancer due to our vaccination regime. Now some are linking that to microchips. Still all my animals are microchipped and they are vaccinated regularly (though I wish they'd look at the neccessity of having a rabies shot every 3 yrs.... there is evidence that shows that might be too frequent and a study that linked the rabies vacc to behavior issues developing after the fact).

As for altering any animal that isn't being bred by a responsible breeder? That is a notion that I will always fully support and for those that don't we will have to agree to disagree.
The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience. ~Eleanore Roosevelt

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Nettle
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Post by Nettle » Tue May 27, 2008 3:51 am

I respect everyone's wishes to neuter or not for reasons that they have investigated and are happy with.

If anyone is worried about entire dogs of either sex straying, there is a far easier and safer way to prevent this than surgical intervention. It is called a fence. Almost all dogs will stray, neutered or not, if given the opportunity. It is in a dog's nature to travel. Responsible dog owners never give their dogs the opportunity to stray.

Neutering is another matter entirely.

Me and my dogs
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Post by Me and my dogs » Wed May 28, 2008 1:24 am

Fences are certainly a good thing............but don't beat surgical intervention.

Determined dogs, and I hear this all the time with people looking for their strays at my shelter, will dig under a fence or chew the fence boards out. Then there are the occasional accidents where the gate is left open. Still - go to a shelter and see how many unaltered dogs found their way there as strays vs the altered. The evidence is pretty high -or contact someone at your nearest school of veterinary medicine - especially if they have a department specializing in shelter medicine and studies.

A woman I used to work with was bit by her female while the dog was in heat - and REALLY wanted to get out. In fact, the only time she dug or bit was while in heat - after the second heat she finally got the female spayed - and the dog is still living w/ her and they are quite happy - there's been no more biting.

A friend of mine had a male Golden that was mated once. After the female was out he got out of the fence yard twice. The second time he was gone for 3 days and they found him when the Coast Guard called. They had found him swimming out past the Marina Del Rey channel and heading North across the Santa Monica Bay towards Malibu. Thankfully they found him! He was promptly neutered and became the loyal family pet, devoted to the kids, that people tend to expect of Goldens. The few times he got out after that over his next 14 years he would go directly to the front porch swing to hang out til the kids got home from school.

BTW, did you read the article Emmabeth posted that notes some of the female health issues and the incidence rate? You may want to check that out.
The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience. ~Eleanore Roosevelt

thistledown
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Post by thistledown » Wed May 28, 2008 5:03 am

Me and my dogs wrote:Fences are certainly a good thing............but don't beat surgical intervention.
suppose the dog jumped over the fence to chase a cat, or the postman. Would a surgical cure be appropriate, or would you advise the owner to invest in better fencing. :D
Still - go to a shelter and see how many unaltered dogs found their way there as strays vs the altered. The evidence is pretty high
the 'evidence' relates to inadequate fencing or careless owners. In the case of the entire dogs whose owners do not come forward, how did you establish that their entire status alone led to them straying as opposed to general carelessness by the owner?

I think perhaps those who work in rescue may have a slightly skewed perception of entire dogs, as the majority of the ones they see are likely to be from irresponsible owners (barring victims of theft or similar).

They never see the entire dogs owned by responsible owners.

So, whilst it may be perfectly reasonable to say that a careless owner may have an entire dog, it is not reasonable to turn that around and say that an entire dog therefore must have an irresponsible owner.

It is these uber-responsible owners who have looked into the issue of neutering and feel that it is not the right time for their own dog that feel a little peeved when others suggest that leaving a dog entire is an omission on their part that needs correcting asap. :shock:

If rescues would just acknowledge the distinction between these two types of owners they would go a long way towards gaining support for their main role, rescue.

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