My vet always recommended early spaying. We had Molly spayed at 6 months. We didn't want to chance a litter of puppies at an early age or one from a father "from a good neighborhood". Also, she had entropian and I would not pass that on to a litter.
I've never had a female dog either, but agree with the others about having her spayed ASAP. I've had my guys neutered by 6 mos of age. I hope you'll decide against her having pups. The shelters are full of dogs literally dying for homes.
Connie~ "Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm." Sir Winston Churchill
current weight: 159.0
Fitness Minutes: (192,672) Posts: 102,400 8/22/08 9:51 P
My girl was spayed at exactly 6 months. I worked in a vet's office and have been active in volunteering for shelters in the past, and my advice is to get her spayed as soon as her current heat cycle is over (and be sure she's not in contact with any unneutered males). There is absolutely no health benefit to allowing a female to have a heat cycle, or even to have one litter of puppies.
The benefits to spaying your dog are huge -- she won't have heat cycles (which is messy for you), she'll be mellower (a lot of people think their dogs personalities will change -- they won't; they just won't be in the same state of mind as when they're in heat) and she will be less likely to get some of the diseases that unspayed females can be prone to - such as ovarian and breast cancer (yes, those diseases affect dogs, too).
Plus, if you're not really interested in breeding, having even one litter of puppies can be a burden for you. A lactating mother and all her puppies requires lots of work.
I don't want to sound preachy, because I'm not saying this in a mean way - I like to share information that peole may not know - but there are many homeless animals and many puppy mills in the world. Responsible breeders breed for the love of the breed and to better the breed (such as reduce the chance of hip/elbow/eye diseases in Labs). Don't feel as though it's going to give your dog a better quality of life if she has one litter of puppies. She won't know the difference.
That's my story and I'm sticking to it!
current weight: 228.0
Fitness Minutes: (25,835) Posts: 1,624 8/22/08 4:16 P
We always get our girls spayed right away. We don't like the heat cycle and don't want unwanted pups. Abby is 7 months now and is getting spayed next week. The other two girls were spayed at 6 months but Abby had a vaginal wall infection so we had to wait until it was gone.
current weight: 220.0
Fitness Minutes: (35,513) Posts: 4,278 8/22/08 3:06 P
my lab is 18 months old and i dont know if its best to get her spayed soon or let her have 1 litter of pups first. she has already had one season and she changed for the worse until she stopped bleeding. thanx linz
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