Pros and Cons of Neutering a Border Collie [What’s the Right Choice?]

Zack Keithy, our author, is a certified veterinarian technician (UC Blue Ash) for over 6 years (contact him here). The articles written here are based on his expertise and experience, combined with a review by our expert vet reviewers including Dr M. Tarantino. Learn more about us here.

If you have a Border Collie pup, you might be wondering whether to have them neutered or not.

It’s a really big decision, and it can be tough knowing what to do.

On one hand, neutering can prevent unwanted litters and correct some behavioral problems. On the other hand, it may change your dog’s natural instincts and cause potential health issues. So, what should you do?

In this post, I will cover all the pros and cons of neutering a Border Collie, hopefully helping you to come to an informed decision.

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What Happens When You Neuter a Border Collie?

For context, I am referring to the surgical removal of a male dog’s testicles which stops sperm production and have these glands stop producing hormones.

In a slightly crude way, some people will call it castration for male dogs.

This operation is carried out by a veterinarian and although it is often advised that the procedure be performed as early as 8 weeks of age, a study has revealed that this is not always the case (I’ll touch on this later).

Once the procedure is complete, your furry friend will receive pain medication to help alleviate any discomfort and will be able to go home to recover shortly.

During the healing process, your pup needs to take it easy for about a week to ten days, which means no roughhousing or intense activities to allow for proper healing.

Neutering will result in your dog being unable to reproduce, and they’ll also experience lower testosterone levels, which could affect their behavior and physical health.

Find out how long after neutering is testosterone gone.

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Why Are Dogs Neutered?

When people hear about dogs getting fixed, they sometimes think, why perform such a cruel act on a dog? Well, it might seem that way at first, but you might think otherwise if you knew the reasons.

Firstly, it helps prevent the overpopulation of dogs.

When there are too many dogs and not enough homes for them, they WILL end up in shelters or on the street, or worse, being put to death.

Secondly, it can help with your dog’s behavior.

Neutered dogs tend to be less aggressive and easier to train as they have lower levels of testosterone, a hormone that can make dogs more territorial and dominant.

Last but not least, it can also prevent health problems like certain types of cancer.

Female dogs who are spayed have a lower risk of getting breast cancer, while male dogs who are neutered have a lower risk of getting testicular cancer.

Are Border Collies Calmer After Being Neutered?

There’s a common belief that neutering a dog will change their personality, making them more subdued.

However, this is just a myth that needs to be corrected.

Neutering doesn’t change a dog’s brain or its overall personality.

Instead, what it does is effect a drop in testosterone levels, which can reduce certain undesirable behaviors like mounting, humping, marking territory, and wandering.

You should know that neutering won’t necessarily make your dog less active or energetic, and the effects can be different from one dog to another.

But don’t worry! Major personality changes are super rare, so you likely won’t see a significant difference in your dog’s behavior after neutering.

Advantages of Neutering a Border Collie

I know some folks might think neutering your dog is harsh, but hear me out.

If you’re not planning on breeding your pup, neutering is just a responsible thing to do as a dog parent.

Not only that, there are some pretty great benefits that come with it, most of them being related to your dog’s health.

Let me break it down for you:

  • An increase in lifespan
  • Prevention of testicular and prostate cancer
  • Reduction of risk for urinary tract infections
  • Reduction in territorial behaviors such as marking and fighting with other dogs
  • Lowering the likelihood of aggressive behavior
  • Elimination of the possibility of unwanted pregnancies

According to a study, neutering dogs extended their life expectancy.

The results show that dogs live on average 13.8% longer than men and 26.3% longer than females.

When you neuter your dog, you’re taking an important step to protect its health.

Neutered dogs have a lower risk of developing testicular and prostate cancer, which are common in older dogs.

In addition, neutering has been linked to a lower incidence of urinary tract infections, which affect nearly a quarter of all dogs.

Behaviorally, neutering can also have a positive impact.

Neutered dogs are less likely to roam and engage in aggressive behavior towards other male dogs when they’re looking for a mate.

This reduces the risk of fights over territory and mating-related injuries, as well as lower the exposure to contagious diseases spread during mating season, like canine herpes.

Another benefit of neutering is that it reduces territorial marking behaviors, which can lead to accidental urination inside the house.

Studies have shown that neutered dogs are less aggressive and less likely to bite.

They’re also less likely to exhibit problematic behaviors like humping.

Perhaps most importantly, neutering eliminates the potential for unwanted pregnancies.

These health and behavioral benefits make neutering a responsible and beneficial choice for dog owners.

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Disadvantages of Neutering a Border Collie

Before making a final decision, you should carefully weigh the disadvantages of neutering your Aussie too.

They can be summarized as follows:

  • Risk of developing joint problems
  • Change in behavior is not guaranteed
  • Might experience a change in the coat’s texture
  • Inability to breed your dog anymore

The first is that there is an increased chance that your dog will develop a joint condition after being neutered.

According to a study published in Frontiers, “in the three categories of dogs weighing 20 kg or more, neutering before 1 year generally was significantly associated with risks of one or more joint disorders above that of dogs left intact”.

When it comes to neutering large-breed dogs, timing is everything.

Neutering before one year of age can increase the risk of joint issues like hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, and cranial cruciate ligament injuries.

It’s also important to note that neutering doesn’t always change a dog’s behavior for the better.

In fact, in some cases, neutering may cause temporary aggression.

However, working with a skilled dog trainer or giving yourself plenty of time to train your dog can help resolve these issues and restore a harmonious relationship between you and your furry friend.

Additionally, some dog owners have reported changes in coat texture as a result of hormonal changes from neutering, particularly in spaniel breeds like the Cocker Spaniel, where the coat may become fluffier. However, this is a rare occurrence.

So it goes, that neutering your dog is a decision not to be taken lightly.

Once the deed is done, there’s no turning back – your pup’s ability to breed will be gone forever.

For those of you with purebred Border Collies, the decision to neuter should be a thoughtful one.

If you wish to preserve your pup’s lineage, you’ll need to weigh the pros and cons carefully before making a final decision.

What is the Best Age to Neuter a Border Collie?

What is the Best Age to Neuter a Border Collie?

If there’s only one thing you should take away from this post, it’s this.

There is a lot of misinformation on the internet about the best age to neuter your dog.

A lot of the time, I see people suggest that it should be carried out when your puppy is between the age of 6 months and 1 year.

study discovered that this is not always the case and should be looked at on a breed-to-breed basis.

According to the results from this study, it is recommended to only neuter Border Collies after the age of 1 to reduce the risk of cancer.

Take note that the actual procedure only takes around 30 minutes, and when done correctly, your dog won’t feel any pain or discomfort for the rest of its life.

I would advise you to find a vet that has lots of experience in this area so that your dog gets the best care and treatment.

Recommendations from friends and reviews online will help you out.

What Are the Risks Involved in Neutering Your Border Collie?

Although neutering your dog is a very common procedure and is thought to be quite a low risk one, that does not mean there is absolutely no risk.

Here are the risks you should be aware of:

  • Although there is a risk of post-operative complications such as infection, bleeding, and other surgical-related issues, these risks are typically low and can be effectively managed with appropriate medication
  • The administration of anesthesia during surgery carries some risks, including allergic reactions, respiratory complications, and, in extremely rare cases, death.
  • Hormonal imbalances that affect bone and joint growth may increase the risk of specific orthopedic conditions such as hip dysplasia and cruciate ligament injury.

I can understand that reading this will surely cause some stress, but don’t worry, these are really quite uncommon these days, especially since this surgery is so often performed.

Doggy says, you might be interested in this too: Pros and Cons of Neutering an Australian Shepherd dog

Care and Recovery After Neutering Your Border Collie

Just to give you a heads up on what to expect after neutering your pup.

It usually takes around 2 weeks for them to fully recover, but some may take a little longer.

Keep an eye on your dog’s health and let your vet know if you notice any unusual symptoms or changes.

During this time, your dog will need plenty of fluids and rest and you might notice some strange behavior like them sitting a lot after being neuteredjumping after being fixed, or if it’s a female, trying to scratch its spay incision with their hind legs.

Your vet will probably give you a painkiller for your dog to take after the surgery, and also be careful not to let them jump or play too vigorously during this recovery period.

Please also get your dog an e-collar to prevent it from licking or biting at the surgical incision site.

Just want to make sure you’re prepared!

Should You Neuter Your Border Collie?

It goes without saying that if you plan to breed your Border Collie, this is not an option.

Ultimately, as a dog owner, it is up to you to make that choice.

I know people have different opinions on this topic and both sides have valid points.

As the dog’s owner, you must take a position and act in the dog’s best interests.

Do as much research as you need to while attempting to keep emotions out of the conversation.

In Conclusion: Pros and Cons of Neutering a Border Collie

Deciding whether or not to neuter your dog can be tough, but if you make the decision to go through with it, it’s important to stick with it.

Before you go ahead with the procedure, take some time to evaluate the benefits and drawbacks to make sure you’re making the right decision for your dog.

If you’ve decided that neutering is the best choice, it’s important to prepare yourself and your pup for the process.

Make sure to educate yourself about any potential risks and take steps to ensure that your dog feels comfortable and loved during the recovery process.

Check out other dog care articles such as potty training regression after neuteringshould you put your dogs’ crates next to each otheraccidentally feeding your dog twice, and many more on our blog!

You’ve made it to the end, but I hope it’s not the end of our journey. We want to hear your voice! Share your thoughts, problems, suggestions, or anything related to your dog in the comments section. And don’t forget to join our newsletter today too.

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Zack Keithy
Zack Keithy

Hey, I'm Zack, the Chief Editor here. I was formerly a Certified Veterinary Technician (CVT) for a good 6 years before moving on to greener pastures. Right now, I am still heavily involved in dog parenting duties, and it is my desire to share all our knowledge with fellow dog owners out there! Connect with me on LinkedIn, or read more about Canine Care Central!

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