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Long-Term Health Risks and Benefits Associated with Spay / N
 
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Dusty
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PostYou have posted in this forum: Tue Oct 05, 2010 6:37 am   Post subject:   Back to top 

There are pro's and con's, and much advice, for and against. It all comes down to this: With Mastiffs, it is best for their health to wait until they are 2 to 3 yrs of age before spay / neuter. But....if you live in an area where an unwanted pregnancy may occur, by all means get it done. There are far too many dogs being put down every day in this country to take that chance. Weigh your options and do what is best for you, your dogs, and your concience.

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Mikanik
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PostYou have posted in this forum: Tue Oct 05, 2010 8:46 am   Post subject:   Back to top 

I think I'm going it go with the majority and my own gut and wait until at least 18 months...2 yrs if I can hold out. Thanks (again!) for all the great advice!

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robo21
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PostYou have posted in this forum: Wed Oct 06, 2010 10:21 pm   Post subject:  Re: Long-Term Health Risks and Benefits Associated with Spay / N Back to top 

Thank God this information is posted here. I find it incredible that some vets have no clue and are spaying and neutering Mastiffs at 1 year and under. I've recently heard of a Mastiff (read back yard) "breeder" who contractually requires spaying/neutering of pet quality pups at 6 months! This is appalling and heinous. And any vet who would ignore the published research on premature spaying and neutering in giant breeds is an idiot and should lose his/her license.

I recently received the following photos from my breeder. Keep in mind that these girls are both from the same litter of 12 puppies. They were virtually identical twins up until 6 months of age.

"C" was spayed at 6 months old because her owner didn't want to deal with her going through even her first heat! The resulting deformities are pronounced and obvious. Even her head to this day remains malformed and undersized, her bones are thin and elongated and the spine is obviously deformed.

There are 10 other littermates, 2 of which were spayed at 18 and 22 months and all are beautiful like "M". Is it any coincidence that "C" suffers from these problems - no way! 11 puppies grow up to look like M and the one who was prematurely spayed ends up with problems.

In these photos they are 20 months of age. Their litter mates all turned out like "M" and 2 of the other girls out of the same litter turned out like "M" after being spayed at 18 and 22 months (they are now about 3 years old).

"C" at 20 months: (look closely at the head, spine, leg bones and feet)


"M" at 20 months:

"C's" deformities are obvious in the spine, legs and feet (which turn outward). Keep in mind that this photo was taken 14 months after "C" being spayed.

She is already suffering from dysplasia and has difficulty getting up and down and walking even is painful. Running is out of the question. So far there are no symptoms of other systemic problems or cancer. We are hoping that this is the extent of her problems.

Even so "C's" quality of life has been minimized to just getting by. Running, playing, and being pain free are things she may never know. She is being treated for dysplasia with NSAID's but they are known to cause liver and kidney problems so it's a very sad situation.


Last edited by robo21 on Thu Oct 07, 2010 9:31 am; edited 1 time in total

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Hankums
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PostYou have posted in this forum: Thu Oct 07, 2010 6:38 am   Post subject:   Back to top 

Hi Robin, Welcome to MOC and thank you for your info!

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robo21
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PostYou have posted in this forum: Thu Oct 07, 2010 7:18 am   Post subject:   Back to top 

Hankums wrote (View Post): ›
Hi Robin, Welcome to MOC and thank you for your info!


Thanks for the welcome Kim!
"Masher!" I love that name! I can relate too... Kahless is over 230 lbs now at 21 months, he got into bed to wake me up this morning - needless to say I was "mashed!" Very Happy

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Robin

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Hankums
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PostYou have posted in this forum: Thu Oct 07, 2010 7:50 am   Post subject:   Back to top 

robo21 wrote (View Post): ›
Hankums wrote (View Post): ›
Hi Robin, Welcome to MOC and thank you for your info!


Thanks for the welcome Kim!
"Masher!" I love that name! I can relate too... Kahless is over 230 lbs now at 21 months, he got into bed to wake me up this morning - needless to say I was "mashed!" Very Happy

He's a big boy! LOL smiley

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vital_force
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PostYou have posted in this forum: Sat Jan 08, 2011 10:24 am   Post subject:  Re: Long-Term Health Risks and Benefits Associated with Spay / N Back to top 

Take this with a grain of salt, but I have a degree in Psychology and I find this article disturbing. I won't go into the details, but the cardinal rule is that correlation DOES NOT, in any way, show causation. Now I haven't read any of the studies cited myself, but there is a huge problem with people taking correlations as fact and it seems that it is happening here. People, including revered psychologists, are all human, and see what they want to see in research.

I would read her referenced texts and see if any of the correlations are even statistically significant, and even then, they still have a high likelihood of not being causal.

This is just my opinion, as I know admittedly next to nothing about mastiffs.

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robo21
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PostYou have posted in this forum: Sat Jan 08, 2011 11:04 am   Post subject:  Re: Long-Term Health Risks and Benefits Associated with Spay / N Back to top 

vital_force wrote (View Post): › Take this with a grain of salt, but I have a degree in Psychology and I find this article disturbing. I won't go into the details, but the cardinal rule is that correlation DOES NOT, in any way, show causation. Now I haven't read any of the studies cited myself, but there is a huge problem with people taking correlations as fact and it seems that it is happening here. People, including revered psychologists, are all human, and see what they want to see in research.

I would read her referenced texts and see if any of the correlations are even statistically significant, and even then, they still have a high likelihood of not being causal.

This is just my opinion, as I know admittedly next to nothing about mastiffs.


I too have a degree in psychology (btw - it is unnecessary to capitalize psychology as used above) and an MBA. I've been a Mastiff owner for 11 years with a close working relationship with my breeder. You are correct the subject of the article and the research is disturbing yet founded in real world evidence. This is not statistical hysteria but rather the studies were done to research and subsequently substantiate valid concerns and anecdotal reports of these issues as being reported by breeders, veterinarians and dog owners. There is no shortage of real world evidence.

Based on my experience, my breeder's experience (25 years with Mastiffs and participating in numerous research projects for the betterment of the breed), other breeders' experience, friends' experience, and this study, I wholeheartedly agree that there is an inherent risk in prematurely spaying/neutering giant breeds. Before this study was ever published my breeder had a clause in her contracts prohibiting spaying/neutering of her pups before 22 months of age. She knew then what she knows now - premature spaying and neutering is dangerously risky.

Rather than "biting the finger" of the study why not look where it is pointing?! Why risk premature spaying/neutering? Is it worth taking a chance? I say the answer is a resounding NO! Save the pseudo-scientific critique (you admit you haven't read the research and know "next to nothing about Mastiffs") and look at some real world evidence with giant breeds and you will agree that it is far better to err on the side of caution regarding this issue.

For the life of me, I don't understand why anyone would attempt to disparage a research study the results of which only protect the health and safety of the breed when you haven't even read the research, "know next to nothing about Mastiffs," nor researched the subject yourself.

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Robin

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CentIAMastiffDaddy
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PostYou have posted in this forum: Sat Jan 08, 2011 4:00 pm   Post subject:   Back to top 

Just from my own personal experience...I've had two female Mastiffs (different breeders). My first was born in 1997 and live to be 8. My second was born in 2005 and is currently 5 1/2 years old. Both came on the scene before I had read anything that recommended later spays. All the information I had been given pointed to the near elimination of mammary cancers because the glands never produced milk.

So my first Mastiff was spayed at 6 months. The second was also spayed at 6 months. Neither suffered from spay incontinence. Neither ended up looking like the Mastiff you label as "C".

Here's Sloane at 2 years of age, weighing 190.


And here's Ryanna at 20 months of age, weighing in at 130. She currently is a trim, muscular 182.


So in my highly limited Mastiff-related experience, there were no negative effects of an early spay.

Now, having said that, if I were ever to have a female Mastiff pup again would I early spay? No because I do believe there are risks associated with an early spay. However, I would also say that I don't think those risks are certain.

Having lived over half a century, I can point to in both human and animal worlds that came to one conclusion only to have later studies come to different conclusions. For instance -

1. High protein leads to inappropriate growth in dogs. Turns out that study was conducted on lab rats, not dogs. Later studies show it's the calcium and phosphorus that are the issue, not protein. And high protein is bad for rats.

2. Chocolate is horrendous for your health. Now they say dark chocolate, in moderation, is actually healthy for you.

Just saying, studies should raise alerts but in my experience very few are certain.

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robo21
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PostYou have posted in this forum: Sat Jan 08, 2011 4:54 pm   Post subject:   Back to top 

CentIAMastiffDaddy wrote (View Post): ›
Just from my own personal experience...I've had two female Mastiffs (different breeders). My first was born in 1997 and live to be 8. My second was born in 2005 and is currently 5 1/2 years old. Both came on the scene before I had read anything that recommended later spays. All the information I had been given pointed to the near elimination of mammary cancers because the glands never produced milk.

So my first Mastiff was spayed at 6 months. The second was also spayed at 6 months. Neither suffered from spay incontinence. Neither ended up looking like the Mastiff you label as "C".

Here's Sloane at 2 years of age, weighing 190.


And here's Ryanna at 20 months of age, weighing in at 130. She currently is a trim, muscular 182.


So in my highly limited Mastiff-related experience, there were no negative effects of an early spay.

Now, having said that, if I were ever to have a female Mastiff pup again would I early spay? No because I do believe there are risks associated with an early spay. However, I would also say that I don't think those risks are certain.

Having lived over half a century, I can point to in both human and animal worlds that came to one conclusion only to have later studies come to different conclusions. For instance -

1. High protein leads to inappropriate growth in dogs. Turns out that study was conducted on lab rats, not dogs. Later studies show it's the calcium and phosphorus that are the issue, not protein. And high protein is bad for rats.

2. Chocolate is horrendous for your health. Now they say dark chocolate, in moderation, is actually healthy for you.

Just saying, studies should raise alerts but in my experience very few are certain.


Certainly no one ever meant to imply that the risks translated into a certainty of adverse effects. If that were the case this thread would probably not exist as there would be no reason to debate or even discuss the subject.

There is no justifiable reason I can think of to spay or neuter early given the proven risks. Risks are expressed as a statistical probability percentage by necessity. But if the evidence showed that dogs were 60% more likely to get cancer if they ate fish chances are that responsible owners would not feed fish.

So given the research and the experiential evidence that is widespread and well documented early spay/neuter should be avoided like the proverbial plague.

Congratulations: You (or more accurately, your 2 girls) were lucky and beat the odds. In my opinion if only one out of five were at risk the odds are still too high to take the chance.

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Robin

He is your friend, your partner, your defender, your dog. You are his life, his love, his leader. He will be yours, faithful and true to the last beat of his heart. You owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion. - Unknown

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vital_force
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PostYou have posted in this forum: Sat Jan 08, 2011 10:32 pm   Post subject:  Re: Long-Term Health Risks and Benefits Associated with Spay / N Back to top 

The past two posts are prime examples of what i'm talking about. I would never presume to say which time is right to spay or neuter your dog. But I can say with certainty, that people see what they expect to see. One poster believes that spaying/neutering early is bad for the dog, so they see bad results everywhere, etc. You're obviously an expert, so you should know that. Red Volkswagen theory anyone?


I posted purely in an effort to educate people about the pitfalls inherent in these types of articles. The people on this board seem to have a true desire to learn, and many people don't know that a correlation does not mean that one causes the other. I was hoping that we could have an intelligent discussion about research sources so that we could all try and get a more scientific reasoning behind the decisions we make about our dogs. However, you have decided to drag me through the mud with your unfounded insults.

All I can ask is that you crack open an intro to pscyh textbook and look up correlations. You obviously slept through that class, and the four years following if you really believe your last post. You state that no one should imply that the risks were certain, and then in almost the next sentence you state that the risks are proven. If you really believe that I should tell you to also avoid coffee like the plague because it has been "proven" that it causes cancer.

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robo21
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PostYou have posted in this forum: Sat Jan 08, 2011 10:47 pm   Post subject:  Re: Long-Term Health Risks and Benefits Associated with Spay / N Back to top 

LOL - you missed my point entirely. Too much...
Insults? All I did is quote you... Evidently you have a real need to be seen as a "scientist." Well good luck. Your self aggrandizing commentary is over the top - YOU ADMITTED YOU HAVEN'T EVEN READ THE RESEARCH. Who is insulting whom?

I'm done with you. I trust the Mastiff community will see the article for what it is and seek out advice from people with experience and knowledge on the subject. Not some pseudo-scientific blowhard.

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Robin

He is your friend, your partner, your defender, your dog. You are his life, his love, his leader. He will be yours, faithful and true to the last beat of his heart. You owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion. - Unknown

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vital_force
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PostYou have posted in this forum: Sat Jan 08, 2011 11:00 pm   Post subject:  Re: Long-Term Health Risks and Benefits Associated with Spay / N Back to top 

I know you're "done", but throwing a typo in my face, and calling my critique "pseudo-scientific" were direct quotes from my post? I have no desire to be seen as a scientist. If I did I would have gotten my masters in psychology instead of diamonds. Very Happy I admitted to not having read every article cited by the author in question, not to having read nothing. And anyone who has a science based degree would know that the format was a huge red flag. So please stop "shouting" at me, lets stop arguing semantics and get back to what's really important before I say something that makes me more of a child than you.

ETA: and I just can't help myself but self-aggrandizing? Really? I made a point not to use scientific jargon, and yet i'm the one trying to make myself seem smart and more impressive?

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CentIAMastiffDaddy
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PostYou have posted in this forum: Sun Jan 09, 2011 6:25 am   Post subject:   Back to top 

I find it VERY disturbing that this has moved from a level of healthy discussion to one of snippy kind of remarks that have little to do with the topic at-hand here. Utilizing words and phrases like "blowhard" or "slept through that class" or "self aggrandizing commentary" are completely unnecessary.

To allow for a "cooling off" period, I am going to lock this thread which will block any additional posts. After a period of time when things have calmed down I will re-open it in the hopes that any discussions will remain focused on the topic itself.


Last edited by CentIAMastiffDaddy on Sun Jan 09, 2011 6:30 am; edited 1 time in total

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PostYou have posted in this forum: Sun Jan 09, 2011 6:27 am   Post subject:   Back to top 

Just want to pop in here and post a "remi