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Further analysis of DachsLife 2015 data on the relationship between neutering and IVDD

posted 26 Dec 2016, 07:01 by Ian Seath   [ updated 27 Dec 2016, 11:48 ]
We have revisited the DachsLife 2015 Lifestyle Survey data; looking at the neutering data in particular. Here are two charts: one showing the percentage of dogs and bitches with IVDD at ages 3 to 8 when they were neutered under 6 months and the second showing the IVDD percentages for dogs and bitches neutered over one year old (2+). (Neutered = spayed or castrated)

For Dachshunds neutered under 6 months, the % with IVDD is greater than for entire dogs at all ages. Of the 4 year old Dachshunds in our survey who had been neutered under the age of 6 months, these were 12 times more likely to have suffered an IVDD incident than entire Dachshunds. When they are neutered over the age of one, there is still an overall higher proportion of neutered dogs and bitches with IVDD, but the difference is less than in the case of early-neutered animals.

25% of 4-5 year old Dachshunds in our survey that had been neutered under the age of 6 months had suffered an IVDD incident compared with 7% of entire Dachshunds.

The following two charts show the differences in IVDD percentages of Dachshunds in our 2015 Survey for (a) dogs aged 4 and (b) dogs aged 8. You can see that, by the time a dog has reached 8, the impact of neutering has reduced compared with the 4 y.o. dogs. There's a shockingly high proportion of 8 year old Dachshunds that experienced an IVDD incident, irrespective of their neuter status. N.B. this data is dogs and bitches combined.

We don't have an explanation but it is part of a body of evidence that suggests neutering is not necessarily a good idea for dogs' health. Read more here.