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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-06-2010, 10:46 AM Thread Starter
Evelyn
 
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infantile vulva??

Anyone familiar with this? My breeder has all her dogs checked by her vet and a report is given to the new owners. Whimsy has this condition and the recommendation was to wait until after her first heat to be spayed.
My vet likes to do the spay before the first heat ( 6 mo.) but is leaving this decision up to me. Now,, the vet that the breeder uses sees her havanese all the time so I'm inclined to go with that....just wondering if anyone has had this condition with their pup.

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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-06-2010, 11:44 AM
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No I haven't heard of it,but both my breeder and my vet recommend spaying after the first season,because sometimes girls can become incontinent,and the jury is out as to whether it is due to them being done before the first heat as they are so young and small,so better to wait if you can,and that way you know you have done all you can to try and avoid this problem.

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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-06-2010, 02:20 PM
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I googled this condition and it seems like it might be the same as an inverted vulva? In which case it says that the main problem is that urine can collect in the folds of skin, causing bacteria to grow and possibly frequent urinary tract infections for life. The web pages said allowing the dog to do through on heat usually allows the anatomy of 'self-correct' itself.

As far as the heat is concerned: My girl Felice was incontinent as a puppy (leaking while sleeping, not the usually puppy accidents) so our vet recommended she have one heat before being spayed to physically mature her organs so that later on in life she has a better chance of not having the incontinence reoccur. It is new thinking that although allowing a heat slightly increases the chance of mammary cancer that there are other health benefits. However, it's still controversial as a policy for all dogs and many vets disagree.

Just my opinion, but in this case it seems that as long as you can be vigilant when Whimsy goes into heat (not letting her around any strange or unneutered dogs for 4 weeks or so) the health benefits that may occur with correcting the infantile vulva will outweigh the slight risk of mammary cancer and other issues. You may want to try to speak to a holistic vet in your area (if there are any) or maybe even by phone to your breeder's vet and they could discuss some of this in more detail and help you weigh the pros and cons.

Oh also, just in case you do choose to wait, Felice didn't go into heat until she was 13 months old. She was a slow bloomer! She's now been spayed and is having no problems at all at a little over 1 1/2 half.

Pace and Felice
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-06-2010, 03:42 PM Thread Starter
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thanks for the info

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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-08-2010, 03:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pacehavi View Post
It is new thinking that although allowing a heat slightly increases the chance of mammary cancer that there are other health benefits. However, it's still controversial as a policy for all dogs and many vets disagree.
I can't find the link to the study right now, but I will find it and post later. According to the study, allowing one heat does not slightly increase the chance of mammary cancer, it significantly increases it!

I have found that many "old school" vets are not up to date with new research and technologies. The vet I went to about 5 years ago with Maddie had NO IDEA about all the research I was reading and argued with me when I didn't want to do things the old way. We found a new vet for her who is just great!

If I were in your situation, I would definitely find a vet to get a second opinion from. IMO, the best bet would be to go to a university in your area with a veterinary school - they are always up to date on the newest research!

Natalie - Roscoe and Stella's mom, Maddie's part-time mom
"Whoever said you can't buy happiness forgot about little puppies." - Gene Hill
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-08-2010, 04:30 PM
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The vet I go to is not old school but is actually a pretty cutting edge holistic vet (who also practices traditional medicine). However, I think it is important for everyone to find a vet that suits both their philosophy as well as what they have researched. Ex: Many vets still vaccinate every year but new thinking is that this isn't needed and that dogs/cats should be titered instead and only receive the vaccines that show a low immunity. I know holistic vets are definitely in line with this new thinking on vaccines and research.

I think this is the study you were referencing: "In fact, the literature states that the risk of developing mammary tumors in dogs spayed prior to the first estrus is 0.5%, 8% after the first estrus, and after the second estrus the risk will increase to 26% (Schneider, 1969)." Note that this research is quite old, and I'm not sure if newer research exists or not. I don't think that having only one heat cycle increases ovarian cancer at all as the ovaries are removed when the dog is spayed.

In some cases (with my dog and possibly in this case) the benefits of having one heat cycle may outweigh the increased chance of mammary cancer. For me, the urinary incontinence that my dog had greatly reduced the quality of her life as she was frequently wet (and depending would sometimes be wet up to the middle of her back due to all her moisture wicking Hav hair!). So, I was willing to make that choice.

Pace and Felice

Last edited by pacehavi; 08-08-2010 at 04:33 PM.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-09-2010, 01:17 AM
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^ That's not the study...it was a newer one, I researched it at school last year but no longer have access to the database since I've graduated

I totally agree with your decision - no one wants their dog to go through serious issues like incontinence!

Natalie - Roscoe and Stella's mom, Maddie's part-time mom
"Whoever said you can't buy happiness forgot about little puppies." - Gene Hill
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