People are very passionate about animals, especially those with whom they grow emotionally attached. For this reason, some decisions involved with raising and training bird dogs can be very controversial. This is especially true with neutering or spaying your bird dog. Dog owners and other interested parties have strong disagreements about whether or not dogs should be fixed at all. If owners do decide to spay or neuter, there is further controversy regarding when exactly is the best time to have the operation performed.
Of course, there are many nuanced arguments for both sides. Proponents point to a reduced risks of prostate health issues, diabetes, and tumor growth, all in addition to the most obvious benefit of all—prevention of unwanted pregnancies. Those who are against neutering and spaying contend that it causes unnatural development issues in dogs. Indeed, there are reasonable arguments from both sides of the issue.
Dogs are used for a wide variety of purposes, including police work, household companionship, and even performing in shows. Every situation has its own set of ideal circumstances when it comes to spaying and neutering.
However, here at Valhalla Kennels & Gun Dogs, we are focused on what is best for the training bird dog. We believe in spaying or neutering our dogs. We have not found that spaying or neutering bird dogs affects their hunting ability or potential. A good pedigree and proper training are the true factors when it comes to performance.
However, we also feel that it is important to wait until the dog is fully developed physically, to prevent the worst of the aforementioned issues. Fixing a dog too early can cause reduced bone growth, sometimes resulting in tall, lanky males that have a narrow chest and head. Females are usually fully developed between the ages of 9 and 12 months, while male dogs typically take around 2 years.
Valhalla Kennels & Gun Dogs is an upland bird-hunting club near Denver, Colorado that caters to both hunters and their dogs. Our nationally recognized gun dog training program can help get the most out of your growing dog.