Vet Q&A: Will neutering really calm my dog down?

by PDSA | 30 September 2019 #VetQ&As

Dogs can be energetic depending on their age, breed and how much exercise they are getting. We're taking a look at whether or not neutering can help 'calm' a dog down.

A lot of the questions we get about neutering dogs are often behaviour related – and usually it’s a male dog involved!

Any dog owner knows how energetic they can be, especially with breeds like Staffies who need a lot of exercise every day and are known for being really high energy. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with an energetic dog, they just need a little guidance in using their energy in the right places.

As to whether neutering will ‘calm’ your dog, the answer is yes and no. Obviously, we’d always recommend neutering your pet. There are lots of health benefits (for example, preventing testicular cancer) not to mention preventing unwanted litters. Also, if you find your dog ‘humps’ a lot, then neutering can help to stop this happening if they’re humping because they’re hormonal.

If your dog’s hyperactive behaviour is also down to hormones, then neutering should help. A lot of owners find their dog chills out more after being neutered whether they’re male or female.

While neutering your dog might help to calm them down a bit, sometimes that’s not the only cause of a dog being a bit much. You might find they aren’t getting enough exercise and need to let off steam. You can check out this infographic to help you find out how much exercise your dog needs by their breed:

The above is just a guide. If you have a chat with your vet, they’ll be able to give you a better breakdown of how much exercise your dog needs according to their age and current fitness levels.

Another way of helping with a boisterous dog is training! Neutering your dog will only do so much to calm them down – the rest is up to you. Reward-based training is the most effective method of training and is more likely to get results faster than any other method. You need to be consistent though, because changing the rules all the time can really confuse your dog.

For some extra advice on basic training for your dog, check out our training page.

Share this article on:  PDSA | 30 September 2019


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