Dog Neutering Cost: A Guide

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Key points

  • The cost of neutering depends on your dog’s age, breed, weight, health condition, and the vet clinic you choose.
  • The average cost of neutering a dog in the UK is between £110 to £230, depending on the pet’s size.
  • In the US, the cost of neutering a dog is between $50 to $600, depending on where you live. It’s more expensive to spay or castrate a dog when you live in urban areas.
  • Neutering a dog has many benefits, including reducing the risk of prostate or mammary cancer, preventing tumors, helping with moody behavior, and decreasing the number of unwanted pregnancies.

Dog Neutering And Spaying Explained

Neutering or castration is a surgery that involves removing both testicles in male dogs. It’s done as a form of birth control and as a method for eliminating behavioral problems.

In females, the sterilization procedure is called spaying. When a dog is spayed, its ovaries and womb are removed via a traditional ovariohysterectomy surgery. A more advanced method of ovariectomy involves only the removal of ovaries. In most cases, this is done as a laparoscopic spay. Another sterilization option for female dogs is keyhole surgery. The vet will use a small camera when performing this surgery and make only a few small incisions to remove the ovaries. It’s much easier for dogs to recover from keyhole surgery, as the procedure is less intrusive.

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It takes only a few hours to neuter or spay your dog. The pets don’t feel pain since they are under anesthesia, but it takes them a few days to recover.

How Much Does Neutering Cost?

Dog Neutering Cost In The United Kingdom

On average, it costs between £110 to £230 to neuter a male dog and between £154 to £397 to spay a female dog. Usually, the procedure for female dogs is more expensive since the surgery is more complicated.

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In Swansea, the price to neuter a male dog under 10kg starts from around £130. The price depends on your canine’s weight, for instance, if your dog weighs over 40kg, you’ll pay around £195. The cost of spaying a female dog starts at £155 for dogs under 10kg and increases up to about £280.

In Bristol, the price of neutering a male dog that weighs under 10kg starts at around £140. The cost of the procedure increases together with the dog’s weight. For instance, you will pay nearly £200 for a male dog weighing over 50kg. Additionally, it will cost you around £210 to spay a female dog weighing under 10kg. There are five weight bands, and the maximum price is £300 for a dog weighing over 50kg.

In Scotland, you’ll need to pay £180-220 for castration and £210-285 for spaying a female dog. Naturally, the exact price will depend on your dog’s weight. The price includes a pre-castration or spay check, the operation itself, and two post-surgery checkups.

If you go to a PDSA clinic, you can expect to pay around £86 for castration, but the price can increase up to £113 if your dog’s testes are inside its body and the vet needs to perform a more complicated surgery. The price of neutering at PDSA clinics is the same for all dogs regardless of their weight. As for spaying, the cost is £113 for dogs over 10kg and £129 for dogs over 40kg. The cost doesn’t depend on where you live in the UK or how much your dog weighs. You just need to meet PDSA criteria.

Dog Neutering Cost In The United States

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Many factors can influence the price of castration and spaying, including your location, the type of veterinary clinic you choose, the dog’s weight, age, health condition, and whether you want to get additional services such as blood tests and pain medication. Based on these factors, the price of spaying a dog can be anywhere from $50 to $600. Prices will be much higher in cities like Chicago and New York compared to small towns. With this said, the average price of neutering a dog starts at $325 in Chicago and $390 in NYC. The average cost of spaying using the laser is between $150 and $500. Pet shelters offer the lowest prices, and sometimes the operation can even be done for free if performed by interns.

How Is The Neutering Surgery Performed in Dogs?

When neutering a dog, a vet makes an incision near the scrotum and removes both testicles. Then the specialist will put on stitches to close the incision site after the procedure. Usually, this surgery requires general anesthesia except when the pet has certain underlying health conditions.

Top Reasons To Neuter Your Dog

Before considering any procedures, you should consult with your vet, as neutering may cause complications due to the dog’s health condition, breed, and age. But otherwise, neutering a dog has numerous advantages:

  • It reduces the risk of many health conditions, including prostate cancer and other cancer types, dog fight injuries, prostate infections, and anal tumors.
  • Neutering is a birth control method that helps to minimize unwanted pregnancies and reduces the number of homeless dogs.
  • The procedure reduces aggressive behaviors caused by the dog’s instincts. The level of testosterone also drops after neutering, which minimizes “humping” behaviors.
  • Neutered dogs don’t mark their territory as much with urine.

Advantages of sterilizing female dogs:

  • The procedure eliminates the risk of womb infections known as pyometra.
  • It prevents unwanted and phantom pregnancy.
  • It reduces the risk of mammary cancer and prevents ovarian tumors.
  • Your dog will be less moody as the season won’t affect its hormones as much.

When Should You Neuter A Dog?

It’s better to castrate a male dog between the ages of six to seven months, but it may differ depending on the breed. Females are usually spayed at six months, but this can also vary depending on the dog’s size, as some dogs only reach the appropriate age for sterilization at 18 months. It’s best to ask your vet when you should neuter your pet.

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Keep in mind that neutering your dog at a young age is not recommended, as it is more dangerous for small pups to be put under anesthesia than for slightly older dogs. Also, it’s commonly recommended that dogs hit puberty before getting spayed.

What Affects The Price Of Neutering

The cost of neutering a dog may differ depending on many factors, but the pricing is not random, it really depends on how complicated the procedure is. For example, the surgery is more expensive for larger, older, or heavier dogs because more anesthesia is required, and the operation lasts longer. Also, the price will be increased if the vet has to check your pet for other medical conditions or conduct additional blood testing. The price also varies depending on the vet. Additionally, some vets may ask if you want an IV catheter for extra safety during anesthesia, while others use it during each surgery.

If your dog is cryptorchid, meaning that one or both of its testicles haven’t descended normally into the scrotum, the surgery will be more expensive, as it will be more complicated. If your dog is overweight, the cost of the neutering will also be higher.

The Difference Between Discount And “Regular” Clinics

Regular vet clinics are privately owned by veterinarians, and discount clinics are funded by either governmental or non-profit agencies. Both are good options, but you need to know what your dog will receive as a patient.

Discount clinics usually don’t perform pre-exam blood work, supportive IV fluid therapy, body temperature, and blood pressure monitoring. In addition, they don’t offer after-surgery care or overnight stays, and their vets have more operations per day. So while the neutering procedure may cost less at a discount clinic, the quality of service may not be the best.

What To Do Before/After The Surgery

Your vet will give you all the instructions for before and after surgery care, and it’s crucially important for you to follow them. Usually, it’s not recommended to feed a dog after midnight on the night before the neuter appointment. After the operation, your vet will give you the list of all the medications your pet needs and after-surgery care procedures. Some dogs experience severe pain after neutering, so it’s important to do everything possible to minimize it.

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Here are some things you can do to keep your neutered dog comfortable:

  • Create a quiet, comfortable place for your dog to rest.
  • Try to keep the dog’s exercise to a minimum for up to two weeks after surgery.
  • Use an Elizabethan collar to stop the pet from licking the incision site.
  • Try not to bathe the dog for ten days or more.
  • Check on the stitches regularly and make sure the incision is healing properly.
  • Contact your vet if you notice redness, swelling, or discharge at the incision site or if your dog is lethargic, experiences vomiting or has a decreased appetite.

Myths About Neutering

Neutering Does Not Cause Dogs To Become Overweight

Even though no studies have confirmed that fixing your dog causes obesity, a lot of people still believe that their dog will get overweight after neutering. However, obesity is caused by excessive eating and low amounts of exercise and not by spaying or castration.

Neutering Is Not A Quick Fix For Aggressive Behaviors

The neutering surgery doesn’t ensure that your dog’s temperament will change, it simply minimizes unwanted behaviors. It reduces testosterone in the dog’s body, but it can’t eliminate it entirely. If your dog expresses aggressiveness on a regular basis and it has developed into a habit, it’s less likely that the neutering will help with this issue.


What is the best age to neuter a male dog?

It’s best to neuter a male dog between the ages of 6 and 9 months.

Do dogs’ behaviors change after neutering?

Spaying and neutering procedures reduce unwanted behaviors by 74% in male dogs and 59% in females.

How long does it take a dog to recover from being neutered?

Usually, it takes 10-14 days to recover from neutering fully.

Do dogs cry after being neutered?

Dogs may experience some pain after the surgery, so it’s normal for dogs to whine after neutering.

Do vets recommend neutering?

Yes, it’s recommended to neuter or spay dogs at a young age.