We remain open to provide care for your pets. We are following the direction of government and regulatory authorities and have implemented hospital and visit protocols to keep both you and our team safe. For regular updates on our hours and visit protocols, please follow our social media platforms.

780.939.3133

The Importance of Spay/Neuter

Since Morinville Vet Clinic acts as a holding facility for stray animals in an area north of Edmonton, the veterinarians and staff see lots of animals that are pregnant and homeless. We always try our best to find homes for all the offspring, but it would be so much better if the lost pets had been spayed or neutered in the first place.

Spaying and neutering are the procedures that veterinarians use to surgically sterilize female and male pets. In both procedures, the main sex organs of the pet are removed. The vets at Morinville Vet Clinic have considered a lot of research on the best age at which to do surgery on dogs. There is not much evidence of a benefit from delaying the surgery in cats, only risks.

The benefits of sterilizing an animal before maturity are that the surgery is faster and less painful because the organs are smaller. It also decreases the risk of mammary (breast) tumours later in life. Animal shelters typically sterilize all puppies and kittens to avoid adding to pet overpopulation, and often will do this surgery at two to three months.

The benefits of delaying surgery until maturity have been shown in a number of different studies. Most of these relate to the effects of altering the levels of sex hormones: estrogen, progesterone and testosterone. Changing these hormones has been shown to change how some body systems develop. One main consideration is that leg bones continue to grow longer if a dog has surgery before full maturity. This excessive lengthening leads to an increased risk of joint problems, especially in the hips and stifles. This is one of the main reasons why larger breeds are recommended to have their surgery after they are a year old and have reached maturity.

There are certain other systems that seem to be affected by the hormone changes that come with surgery before maturity. The thyroid gland is certainly affected by changes in hormones. Dogs that are sterilized before maturity have tripled the risk of having low thyroid hormone than those who are sterilized after a year of age.

One of the biggest risks of early surgery to come out of the studies was the chance of certain cancers in large breed dogs. The most important of these are hemangiosarcoma (a tumour of the spleen, liver or heart) and osteosarcoma (a tumour of the bone). Both of these cancers are very aggressive and almost certainly fatal. Sterilizing early doubles the risk of osteosarcoma and triples the risk of hemangiosarcoma. The research that measured these risks was done by looking at a lot of cases over a period of many years.

In the end, it is up to the pet owner when they wish to have their pets spayed and neutered. That is a decision made for a lot of different reasons.  From a medical standpoint, Morinville Vet Clinic recommends that all dogs that will grow to more than 27 kg (60 pounds) when they are adult should have their surgery at one year of age, and cats and smaller dogs should have their surgery at six months.

Written by Morinville Veterinary Clinic 

Dr Kinsmen has Seen us through 4 dogs now, she is very compassionate and an excellent vet, I will only…

Melissa

Very friendly receptionist and fantastic veterinarian. Dr.Smith is incredibly friendly, professional and passionate

James King

Easily one of the best vet clinics. We bring both our pets here and the care they both receive is…

Randi-lynn Miko

The staff always show great affection for my dog. She was in for her annual shots recently.…

Kim Earles

Amazing vet and staff. My poor dog got a fish hook stuck in his mouth, took it out with no…

Terry Smith

Blog

A None Bias Opinion on Grain-Free Diets and Dilated Cardiomyopathy in Dogs

Disclaimer: This blog is to not meant to bad talk anyone and/or any companies out there making/and or using grain-free diets.

Read More
See All Articles

COVID-19: Additional measures we are taking

Dear Clients,

Due to the close contact that our work requires, we have taken additional measures to protect you and our team while providing care for your furry family members.

The following changes are effective as of Thursday, March 19, 2020:

1. We are currently operating a "closed waiting room" policy to protect our clients and staff. When you arrive, please remain in your vehicle and use your cell phone to call us at 780 939 3133. We will take a history of your pet over the phone, and bring your pet into the clinic for an examination with the veterinarian. Once the examination is finished, we will call you to discuss our recommended treatment plan and then return your pet to your car.

2. We are still OPEN with the following hours: Monday to Friday 8:00 am - 9:00 pm, Saturdays 8:00 am-6:00 pm and Sundays 10:00 am-5:00 pm.

3. If you are ordering food or medications, please allow 2-4 business days as our suppliers are dealing with increased demand and are trying to fill orders as quickly as possible. We will advise you as soon as your order arrives. Please call us when you arrive to pick up your order, but do not enter the hospital. Our staff will bring your order to your car and take payment over the phone.

4. We ask that payments be made over the phone with a credit card whenever possible. However, we will still accept debit payments if needed.

5. Following the recommendations of our government and medical experts, we are doing our best to practice social distancing within the constraints of our roles. As such, we have taken measures to avoid both contracting and facilitating the spread of this virus.

Thank you for helping us be diligent for everyone's safety. As we have heard from all levels of government, the situation is fluid, and any updates will be provided as changes occur.

- Your dedicated team at Morinville Veterinary Clinic