Up to What Age Can a Yorkshire Terrier Be Spayed?

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Whether you are a breeder or just a dog owner, you may want to spay your Yorkshire Terrier to prevent inbreeding. However, the procedure is surgical, and it is paramount to know at what age to conduct it. So, up to what age can a Yorkshire Terrier be spayed?

Up to What Age Can a Yorkshire Terrier Be Spayed?

The best age for spaying a Yorkshire Terrier with a healthy weight is before it reaches its first heat, approximately when it’s 4 to 5 months old. On the other hand, if the Yorkie is underweight, you can wait until it’s 6 to 12 months old.

Brown and black yorkshire terrier

Be careful not to spay a Yorkie when it’s so young due to the weight-related health issues of anesthesia. Regardless of the age, it’s also advisable to ensure the dog is in good health to prevent health complications in future.

What Is the Procedure of Spaying a Yorkshire Terrier?

Considering that spaying a Yorkshire Terrier consists of a surgical operation to remove the ovaries and the uterus, the procedure starts by giving the Yorkie general anesthesia.

Once the dog is asleep, the surgeon inserts a breathing tube into the dog’s throat to help deliver oxygen to the lungs during the operation. In most cases, Yorkies will need to be under a heating blanket during the operation.

The surgeon will then make an abdomen incision right below the belly button and completely remove the uterus, both ovaries, and the reproductive tract via the incision. Once the procedure is complete, the surgeon will make two stitches under the dog’s skin, which will eventually dissolve into the dog’s body.

Why Do I Need to Spay My Yorkie?

Although spaying your Yorkshire Terrier can be costly and the procedure can expose it to some health risks, you might still need to spay your Yorkie due to the following reasons:

Health Improvement

Like humans, female Yorkies are prone to reproductive system cancers such as mammary cancer and ovarian cancer. They are also prone to ovary infections, depending on their lifestyle. Usually, spaying helps eliminate all health risks related to the dog’s reproductive system.

Temperament Improvement 

Spaying has a direct impact on the Yorkies’ hormones and can help to improve its temperament. Some of the temperament benefits of spaying include:

  • Female Yorkies have hormonal changes in relation to their estrous cycles. Spaying helps eliminate these potential hormonal changes and the associated mood swings.
  • Spaying helps eliminate the restlessness and running off associated with getting in heat.
  • Although spaying might not eliminate the territorial marking issues, it helps to minimize them.

Pregnancy Prevention 

Whether you want to avoid pregnancy’s mood swings and health complications, or you don’t want to inbreed, spaying is a great way to prevent pregnancy.

Black and brown yorkshire terrier

Although you can neuter a male Yorkie to prevent pregnancies, a female Yorkie on heat can run off your compound to go mate with a neighbor’s dog. That means the only sure way to prevent pregnancies is to spay the female Yorkie.

Are There Health Risks Associated With Spaying Yorkies?

Although the benefits of spaying outweigh the downsides, the following are some of the health risks of spaying.

Urinary Incontinence 

Urinary incontinence generally refers to the loss of bladder control or involuntary urine leakage. Spaying increases the chances of urinary incontinence in Yorkies primarily if conducted on those less than three months old. Keep in mind that this problem can start several years after the surgery.

Anesthesia Related Risks

Although anesthesia helps keep your dog asleep and calm during the surgery, there are some risks associated with anesthesia, especially for small dog breeds such as Yorkshire Terriers. The effect of anesthesia can range from minor issues like vomiting to more life-threatening issues like stroke and cardiac arrest.

How Long Will My Yorkie Take To Recover From Spaying?

In most cases, Yorkies recover from spaying after around two weeks. Keep in mind that you should not give your Yorkie drinking water for at least one hour after spaying. After that, you can continue caring for your Yorkie as advised by the veterinarian.

If you notice your Yorkie has pale gums, vomiting, quivering or bleeding, contact your veterinarian as it could be a sign of a complication or infection. It’s also advisable to allow your Yorkie to rest for at least ten days without exercise.

Related Questions 

How Can I Prepare My Yorkie for Spaying?

In most cases, the veterinarian will help you prepare the Yorkie for spaying. The vet will conduct a blood test, conduct a physical exam and evaluate the medications and pre-existing health conditions to ensure the Yorkie is in good health before spaying.

What Can Happen if I Spay My Yorkie When It Is Too Young?

Spaying your Yorkie too early can increase the chances of health issues such as urinary incontinence, bone cancer, torn ligaments and hip dysplasia. Since a too young Yorkie is underweight, the health risks of anesthesia can also be significantly high.

Final Thoughts

Although the best age to spay a Yorkie is 4 to 5 months, it is advisable to evaluate its weight and overall health condition to prevent complications. Contact your vet to help conduct blood tests and physical examination to determine whether the Yorkie can be spayed.