Altering the sex and effects on fearful behaviors

Discussion in 'Dogs - General Dog Chat' started by AdrianneIsabel, Dec 10, 2011.

  1. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

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    This came up at my work the other day in a discussion. Has anyone seen or read research (if it exists) on the effect of altering dogs and its effect on an *already* fearful dog. Has it made things easier to handle for the dog, harder, or without effect?
     
  2. NicoleLJ

    NicoleLJ PSD Partner

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    When I was fostering I saw the whole gambet that you listed. Some it helped, some stayed the same and some became worse. I know of no study though and would be very interested in reading any you find.
     
  3. Aleron

    Aleron New Member

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    This briefly talks about effects on behavior: http://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&q=cache:piyOekL8AbwJ:www.andelrottweilers.com/prosandconsofNeutering.doc+pros+cons+spay+neuter&hl=en&gl=us&pid=bl&srcid=ADGEESisjicALzA_j73jhGhYWxBnxp8PNT8rnbxviysiuUcds71gzhnjgpmSHUBSp0UwKo4aiEiPQmZRVRSBUaZeBRSoe-hNIQYVaUObiMzaBET0UjcvnRbzmZTl2lXAa2FCnuI2A7Sv&sig=AHIEtbRxmEIu8Q-eAiD0H-pu4dPfiu-X_A

    "Neutered male dogs and spayed female dogs are at increased risk of progressing from mild to severe
    geriatric cognitive impairment compared to intact male dogs55. There weren’t enough intact geriatric
    females available for the study to determine their risk.
    Geriatric cognitive impairment includes disorientation in the house or outdoors, changes in social
    interactions with human family members, loss of house training, and changes in the sleep-wake cycle55.
    The investigators state “This finding is in line with current research on the neuro-protective roles of
    testosterone and estrogen at the cellular level and the role of estrogen in preventing Alzheimer’s disease in
    human females. One would predict that estrogens would have a similar protective role in the sexually intact
    female dogs; unfortunately too few sexually intact female dogs were available for inclusion in the present
    study to test the hypothesis”55" http://www.naiaonline.org/pdfs/longtermhealtheffectsofspayneuterindogs.pdf

    "Those behaviors that are not sexually dimorphic, including most forms of
    aggression, are not decreased in incidence by gonadectomy. One behavioral
    consequence of spaying that has been documented in several studies is an
    increase in reactivity towards humans with unfamiliar dogs and increased
    aggression toward family members. This may be hormonally related; there may
    also be a breed predisposition." http://www.akcchf.org/news-events/library/articles/issue25spring2008.pdf

    "The study that identified a higher incidence of cranial cruciate ligament rupture in spayed or neutered dogs also identified an increased incidence of sexual behaviors in males and females that were neutered early.(5) Further, the study that identified a higher incidence of hip dysplasia in dogs neutered or spayed before 5 1/2 months also showed that early age gonadectomy was associated with an increased incidence of noise phobias and undesirable sexual behaviors.(6) A recent report of the American Kennel Club Canine Health Foundation reported significantly more behavioral problems in spayed and neutered bitches and dogs. The most commonly observed behavioral problem in spayed females was fearful behavior and the most common problem in males was aggression.(12) " http://www.caninesports.com/SpayNeuter.html

    This talks about aggression and effect of altering: http://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&q=cache:MIsMmQvf464J:eprints.lincoln.ac.uk/1880/4/1_3.pdf+increase+same+sex+aggression+spay&hl=en&gl=us&pid=bl&srcid=ADGEEShbmkW6bI5lTELpyYLhEHTB1Ip1M3qvE_Hzwc9w1RU-9RdlF-28WXRzrKWSOUSqAghEs7Wy7wGbChNVwBD2HGunHnnSbA91rd18OowAUGr-g20zXbeCPCi_xQE5DCHg96ONgW26&sig=AHIEtbTrw_TYnS37EgsoGg1nqFOTg-tARg

    "The results of the study suggest that spayed female dogs tend to be more aggressive
    toward their owners and to strangers than intact females, but that these effects of spaying
    on behavior appear to be highly breed-specific. Contrary to popular belief, the study
    found little evidence that castration was an effective treatment for aggressive behavior in
    male dogs, and may exacerbate other behavioral problems. Further research will be
    needed to clarify the relationship between age of spaying/neutering and these apparent
    effects on behavior.
    Reference
    Hsu, Y., and Serpell, J.A. 2003. “Development and validation of a questionnaire for
    measuring behavior and temperament traits in pet dogs.” J. Amer. Vet. Med. Assoc., 223:
    1293-1300." http://www.cdoca.org/downloads/files/Early%20SN%20and%20Behavior.pdf

    Effects of spaying on reactivity in female GSDs: http://www.scribd.com/doc/14286225/Effects-of-Ova-Rio-Hysterectomy-on-Re-Activity-in-German-Shepherd-Dogs

    Evidence Based Vet Forum, lots of studies involving altering posted here:
    http://www.ebvet.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=15
     
  4. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

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    Thanks, just to be clear we're only concerned in this particular discussion with effects of confidence and ability to over come fear, be it environmental or social. Not so much aggressiveness, just the shy aspect, if that makes sense?

    I'll definitely read through all the links though, this is helpful!
     
  5. release the hounds

    release the hounds Active Member

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    I have seen nothing to date, but I would question just how much affect it would have. Fear is fear. I can't see the hormones affecting that much. I can however see it have a great affect on how they deal with that fear, whether it be avoidance, or aggression, but not much to do with the actual fear itself.
     
  6. adojrts

    adojrts New Member

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    Actually hormomes do effect fear and shyness especially in females, lots of excellent information out there, just google it. Dr. Jean Dodds has been doing research on it for many years now and she is just one.
     
  7. Shai

    Shai & the Muttly Crew

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    I never noticed a difference with Kim, but she was spayed prior to sexual maturity. Her fearfulness reduced over time and today is virtually eliminated but this did not coincide at all with her spay.

    She had both social (human) fear related behaviors and, much more strongly, environmental fear behaviors (sound, sight, Hell-Spawned Garbage Trucks, etc.)

    Web wasn't fearful so moot point.
     
  8. Southpaw

    Southpaw orange iguanas.

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    Juno is shy, somewhat fearful I guess.... But of course I have no idea if it would be related to being spayed. She was spayed at 6 months and I would say I didn't notice the shyness creeping in until she was about a year old. Before that point, if it was an issue (which, it probably was...) then it was really mild because I never noticed it.
     
  9. CharlieDog

    CharlieDog Rude and Not Ginger

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    There was a dog at work who was extremely fearful and very very high anxiety. Due to a lot of complications, we eventually discovered she had either never been spayed by the humane society, or it had been completely botched. She came into heat, and we realized what was going on, her owner had her spayed again by a vet, and it's like she's a different dog. Whereas before, she was always very reluctant to leave the daycare (completely the opposite of most dogs, but she was extremely comfortable at daycare, nothing "bad" or scary had ever happened to here there) she's now a lot happier at home, more easy going with strangers and is happy to leave with her owner now.

    Could be she's just finally settled in (after a year?) or it could have something to do with being spayed, and we noticed these changes within two weeks of her being spayed and coming back to daycare, and he had not hired a trainer or behaviorist to work with her. He said they've just been doing what they normally do.
     
  10. release the hounds

    release the hounds Active Member

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    care to link me any, all i see are discussions on thyroid panels.

    I guess I should have clarified before, i'm talking sex hormones and removing them in spay and neuter situations as that was what was referenced in the OP.
     
  11. adojrts

    adojrts New Member

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    The thyroid and the pituitary gland are linked, therefore the they are also talking about (read further) and have researched it as it pretains to sex hormones, reproductive problems and fear periods etc. Bottomline is a lot breeders know how much a thyroid can cause problems and if the dog is put on meds even for a short period of time, it can help a dog with fear issues, aggression etc. Because once the thyroid, (therefore the pituitary gland) are leveled again, the problems often go away and the dog no longer requires the meds.

    And the research says that by spaying and neutering often does not solve the problem and can make it worse but meds can help :)

    Btw, the thyroid levels do not have to be completely out of wack (low normal or high normal) nor does the dog have to have typical thyroid symptons i.e weight gain etc.

    One of my students, her dog last year had to have an emergancy spay due to pyometra after a false preggo's. The dog had been prior to that mildly reactive, after the spay she got much worse. I suggested that they test her thyroid, came back low normal, she was put on a low maintance dose for 4 months..............the dogs reactivity and fear issues went away. :) That is not the only case that I know of and since the meds are cheap and don't cause harm for a short period. There is no reason to not try it, they may not know why the thyroid got out of wack but it can be an easy and cheap fix and imo worth investigating.

    Just one article on the subject.

    http://www.canine-epilepsy-guardian-angels.com/bizarre_behavior.htm
     

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