At Mt Martha Vet Clinic we understand how much your canine friend means to you. Neutering is a once in a lifetime event and we are dedicated to ensuring your pets operation is performed safely and successfully.

What is involved in desexing?

On the morning of surgery your pet is weighed and examined. Blood testing is performed if elected. A sedative injection is given which relieves anxiety & provides pain relief. An intravenous (iv) catheter is placed and general anaesthesia is induced by injection through this catheter and then maintained with a mixture of gas and oxygen via a tube placed in the throat. IV fluids are commenced (advised) The anaesthetic is constantly monitored and recorded by a nurse. The surgical site is clipped and prepared and antibiotic is given The vet performs the surgery in sterile conditions using human grade suture materials. A tattoo is applied to the left ear so that your pet can be identified as having been desexed, and further pain relief administered. Afterwards your pets recovery is closely monitored and further pain relief is given again as required. The iv catheter and drip are removed once we are happy with your pets recovery and they have been offered food and water.

In MALES both testicles are removed (castration).
In FEMALES the uterus and the ovaries are removed (known as a spay).

At discharge we give you written instructions on postoperative care. We expect at discharge your pet will be walking and happy to see you though quieter than usual. A small number of pets will need to wear a protective hood to stop them chewing at their stitches. After desexing exercise must be limited to leash walking only until stitches are removed. Our fees include a check up at 2-4 days and stitch removal at 10-14 days after surgery.

What are the benefits of desexing?

As well as controlling fertility and unwanted puppies there are a number of health and behavioural benefits.


  • Decreased roaming behaviour greatly reduces the risk of straying and road accidents.
  • Aggressive and dominant behaviour to humans and other dogs is much reduced.
  • Testicular cancer cannot occur.
  • Problems affecting the prostate gland are greatly reduced
  • Certain cancers and hernias affecting the area around the anus are greatly reduced by castration.
  • The other main advantage of castration for dogs is that your pet is much more content, otherwise his natural urge to reproduce cannot be satisfied.


  • Infection of the womb (pyometra) is a life threatening condition that is common in non desexed bitches, the risk of which is eliminated by spaying.
  • Dogs spayed before their first heat have a near zero risk of breast cancer.
  • A spayed bitch avoids the risks and costs associated with pregnancy and giving birth.

At what age can my dog be neutered at Mount Martha Veterinary Clinic?

Providing your pet is healthy and vaccinated, we advise desexing at 5 months of age. Desexing can be performed much younger than this but there are increased anaesthetic risks in younger patients. Bitches can come into heat any time from 6 months so we advise spaying before this occurs.

Anaesthesia – desexing involves a general anaesthetic and we advise pre anaesthetic blood testing and IV fluids to increase the safety of anaesthesia. More information is provided on the pre anaesthetic form.

When can I go ahead? A few days notice is all that is required – simply call us on 5974 1199 we will be happy to make the arrangement, and supply you with a pre anaesthetic information sheet that details what you will need to do on the morning of your pets surgery. For your convenience, we can admit your pet the evening before, or accommodate them afterwards (an extra charge applies).

Click here to download this info as a handout.