Spaying and neutering rats: pros and cons

Sterilization of animals — the surgical removal of reproductive organs in males and females.So if you bought a heterosexual couple or a few rats, very soon may be faced with uncontrolled increase in the number of Pets. Or just need seat males and females in separate cells or to sterilize animals.

IMPORTANT: Separate the content in one area is likely to cause in rats severe stress — the dominant instinct of reproduction will constantly force them to find ways to leave the cell. If you have only two animal, they will grieve in individual cells of the rat pack animals with high social activity, and need for constant communication.

Also rats are castrated in the case of detention of several males to reduce aggression in the struggle for hierarchy. In most cases animals quickly find out who is stronger and subject to statutory roles, but sometimes the fights continue and the animals receive serious wounds from the bites. Surgery often helps to make the pet calmer.

Medical indications

Castration of rats sometimes appointed by the doctor when other diseases affect animal reproductive system and the removal of organs needed for the cure. This is usually a variety of inflammatory diseases, cysts, neoplasms of reproductive organs and mammary glands. Can also be other medical indications:

  • the age of the rats — even if the animals are used to produce offspring, females of the year typically derive from breeding and sterilized as a high risk of death in childbirth;
  • disease, malnutrition, vitamin deficiency — these animals also exclude from breeding;
  • a high level of aggression of an animal toward owner — castration the rats don't give an absolute guarantee but is often an effective tool.

Getting ever more popular operation to prevent the development of cancer. Rats do a lot of tumors, and mostly in the reproductive system. But still there is no direct connection, therefore, to reliably protect the animal with sterilization will not work.

The pros and cons

Sterilization rats has both positive and negative aspects, and is not yet mandatory (except when shown health). The pros of the procedure are the following:

  • the ability to keep rats together — sterilization permanently solve the problem of unwanted pregnancy will reduce the time in pet care. You do not need to keep males and females in separate cages, walk the turns;
  • reduced risk of tumors in the mammary glands, reproductive organs;
  • reduces the risk of development of pituitary tumors — tumors in the brain;
  • life expectancy is increasing.

Unlike larger animals, the operation often has no effect on the behavior of rats, your pet will not lose activity, curiosity towards the world, of interest to communicate. But it can also be a drawback — although castration of male rats is often carried out with the aim to reduce their aggressiveness and to conacaste, surgery does not always help.

IMPORTANT: the disadvantages of sterilization and castration can also be attributed to the metabolic disorders — although this point is not so pronounced as in cats and dogs. But still the risk of weight gain exists, therefore after procedure it is better to carefully monitor the diet of the pet.

How is it performed

There is a distinction in terms: castration means the complete removal of all reproductive organs, and sterilization — tubal ligation or spermatic duct, and a partial removal of organs. Most often it is the castration rats as it reduces the risk of tumors. The younger the animal, the more likely it is good to move the anesthesia and the operation itself. It is therefore recommended to carry out the operation at the age of 3-5 months.

Technique of castration of rodents is very similar to a similar operation in cats. But a number of points makes it more difficult. Rats due to its small size it is impossible to get a convenient surgical access, tissue organs thinner, more is the intestines. Also a little different technique stitches and used a special thread. So the doctor must have the necessary experience in performing surgical procedures in small rodents.

Pre-cook the very rat to surgery is not necessary. If you keep a group of animals will need a separate cage or carrying on the few days while the stitches heal.

It is better to feed the animal for at least two hours before the procedure. Sterilization rats takes 15 to 30 minutes and is performed only under General anesthesia. The stitches are made of absorbable fine thread, so they do not need to remove.

The postoperative period will differ depending on the type of anesthesia — need to just follow the doctor's instructions.

Until the stitches heal pet rat spends most of her time in a special blanket — it can be purchased at the pet store or clinic, or you can make your own. You will also fend for her other Pets to socialize and play games — they can have a snack tie blankets, to cause accidental injury to the animal restricted movements. It is recommended to place the rat in a carrier or cage with smooth walls — this will eliminate the risk of suture line disruption from sudden movements and jumps, and the pet will avoid the risk to fall and hurt yourself.

Possible health hazard

Often the owners are afraid to carry out the operation, because the mortality rate after castration in small rodents is quite high. This is due to several reasons. The biggest risk with surgery is associated with anesthesia. Rats have a lower tolerance for anesthesia than other animals, and their small size makes high the probability of error in the calculation of the dose. Also in rodents is much more difficult to get a permanent intravenous access in order to regulate the General condition, the sleep depth.

After recovering from anesthesia, the pet is recovering from three hours to one day, all this time the danger to his life. It is necessary to monitor the condition of the animal, its heating, food, water. Otherwise there is a high risk of death from dehydration, the development of cold injury in the fall. Often after surgery the rats leave the hospital under the supervision of a physician.

The safest option is to use inhalation anaesthesia — in this case the animal is euthanized with gas, which is continuously fed through a special mask. Gas does not have severe effects on the animal body, and awakening occurs within 10-15 minutes after removing the mask. Full recovery occurs within one hour of waking.

Spaying and neutering rats: pros and cons
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