Why does the RSPCA advocate early-age desexing (EAD)?
The RSPCA advocates that all dogs or cats offered for sale or adoption as companion animals should be desexed prior to the transfer of ownership.
The RSPCA practices EAD from the age of 8 weeks when the surgery is simple and recovery is rapid.
- EAD is regarded as an effective strategy to prevent unwanted/unplanned pregnancies in cats and dogs to help reduce the number of unwanted companion animals entering shelters and pounds.
- EAD offers significant animal welfare benefits related to surgery and anaesthesia when compared to traditional age desexing.
- EAD offers health and behavioural benefits when compared to traditional age desexing.
- EAD offers all of the commonly accepted medical and behavioural benefits associated with general desexing.
- The use of EAD reduces the amount of time young animals need to spend in the shelter environment and thus improves the efficiency of shelters in terms of their resources and capacity.
Based on the available scientific evidence and extensive RSPCA experience performing EAD, the RSPCA considers EAD to be a safe and effective strategy to prevent unintended litters.