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contraception for dogs

18 June 2012

Getting pregnant is one of the bigger events of life, isn’t it?

Got a female dog and don’t want her to follow the promiscuous path of Rizzo in Grease?

You’ve got two choices. #1 is keep them in your home for the duration of their heat. #2 is to spay your dog. We already survived one round of #1 and had long opted to neuter Luna, or as Wikipedia so clinically describes it, “abdominal surgery to remove the ovaries and uterus.” This meant removal of the parts that would have made Little Lunas had we’d been the breeding kind.

Contrast that with the human condition.

One day, you’re a freewheeling Summer Shakespeare-going couple, and the next day you’re staring at two pink lines on a home pregnancy test and exclaiming, “Oh man, oh man.” (Ed note: true story, by the way).

Positive pregnancy test image

what you can expect to see as “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow?” plays on the reruns of Dick Clark’s old top 40 show

The first time I heard talk of controlling pregnancy, I was something like ten years old. A friend of the family was getting her tubes tied. My Mom said that it was a tubal ligation. Until that moment, I didn’t even know humans had tubes. I thought then of the human body in terms of limbs, hair and haircuts, skin rashes, bloodied knees during summer months, and nose hairs that tingled whenever the temperature dropped below about -20 Fahrenheit. Tubes? Not at all.

Still, this woman was ending any future chances of additional baby-carrying in her womb by having her fallopian tubes blocked. (Womb was another word the ten-year-old me had never heard of). It (the procedure) sounded really drastic to me, someone whose most stressful moments in life usually came from watching footage of lions mauling impalas on Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom while host Marlin Perkins narrated.

Skip forward a couple of years to middle school when my giggling classmates and I first learned about contraception courtesy of the grainy black and white archives of the National Film Board of Canada. By the end of the film, I was current and expert on all contemporary birth control methods. (This was the late-1970s, prior to the invention of RU-486 and other morning-after solutions).

Birth Control for Dogs Can be Permanent

Birth control for dogs is a little less glamorous than heading to your local Duane Reade for Trojan Extra Ribbeds or getting a recurring prescription for The Pill. As far as I know, the pet industry hasn’t perfected morning-after pills for dogs so good old-fashioned neutering was our choice on the menu.

Here’s how birth control for dogs works. You make an appointment. You take your dog over. You pick her up the next day. She’s a little lighter.

Luna’s done all of the vertical growing she’s going to do. She’s also done most of the growing on the other axes that she’s going to do. We scheduled the procedure today. On the morning after Father’s Day, MW dropped Luna off at the TGV so she could forever avoid having to celebrate Mother’s Day.

What to do While You’re Preventing Pregnancy

If you’re eying the calendar and thinking of a convenient date, here’s a tip courtesy of B2. Large breeds such as Great Danes are subject to stomach torsion. It is a frequently lethal condition in which the stomach twists. The moment of spaying is the moment to also have your vet perform what is called circumcostal gastropexy, which attaches the stomach to the ribs.

It’s a double shot of surgery that prevents two big landmark moments – motherhood and premature death.

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