The Scoop On Ovary-Sparing Spay at IPH

May 15, 2019 at 12:39 PM by Nikki Wardle

Overy sparing spay

We are excited to say that Dr. Bingham has successfully completed an ovary-sparing spay (known as an OSS) at our Overland location and the pretty girl he operated on is now home and back to her usual energetic self.

We’ve been getting an increased amount of questions and requests for ovary-sparing spays that usually consist of benefits versus risks and if their canine should be recommended for the procedure.

Ovary-Sparing Spay vs Traditional Spay Surgery

For the past few decades, the most common way for an owner to make sure their furry females do not get pregnant is to remove her ovaries and uterus. An OSS surgery is basically a hysterectomy, removal of just the uterus while leaving the ovaries intact.

Over the past decade, the importance of maintaining normal and healthy hormone levels throughout a dog’s life has shown to have substantial, long-term benefits.

Benefits of an OSS

  • Your female will still have normal hormone levels but not bleed
  • Fewer ACL issues
  • Less chance of hip dysplasia
  • Less chance of getting most cancers
  • Decreased risk of urinary incontinence

Risks and Downsides Associated with OSS

  • Increased risk of mammary cancer (90% of mammary tumors are benign and mammary cancer is rare)
  • Females continue to have heat cycles, and male dogs nearby will be able to smell them
  • Females may show signs of false pregnancies
  • Females may exhibit behaviors such as nesting, aggression, increased panting and whining
  • Some females may skip meals during a “cycle”

Dr. Bingham states “There are pros and cons that need to be discussed in detail with your veterinarian regarding an OSS. Breeds that have a high rate of orthopedic disease, cancer, and urinary incontinence would probably benefit. The owner must be aware that the dog is at higher risk of mammary tumors and will still have a heat cycle (no discharge) with swelling and behavioral changes. It is not a black and white decision. It should be made with education, research, and a consult from a trusted member of your health care team.”

We applaud all families that decide to have their cuddly canine spayed to help control the pet population. If you are concerned about any of the health risks associated with an ovary-sparing spay surgery, especially if you own a large-breed dog, please ask your veterinarian, or you can make an appointment at one of our locations.

Topics: Pet Spay

Nikki Wardle

Written by Nikki Wardle

Nikki has been writing for Intermountain Pet Hospital since 2014.