Animal Welfare: Companion Animals

This page provides access to a variety of resources that can help you make a positive difference in the lives of companion animals.

Featured Topic: Gonadectomy in Dogs

Preventing pet reproduction is part of responsible pet ownership, and gonadectomy remains a vital component of pet population control.  Gonadectomy is the most common surgical procedure performed on pets and reduces undesirable mating behaviors. But research studies over the past few years have shown that the procedure is not as innocuous as it was believed to be; gonadectomy reduces the risk of some cancers and medical conditions, but increases the risk of others.

As our thinking on gonadectomy evolves, honest and transparent conversations must take place within the profession as well as between veterinarians and pet owners. In order to facilitate that discussion, AVMA has developed spay/neuter resources to help veterinarians sort through the many factors involved in these decisions for canine and feline patients.

Join the Conversation

Are you an AVMA or SAVMA member? We invite you to share your thoughts on canine gonadectomy—or any other animal welfare topic—by joining The Conversation on LinkedIn.

See Also: Socialization

Our veterinary resources on the socialization of puppies and kittens feature a new literature review on this subject.  Please watch this space for more information on how to get young puppies and kittens off to the best possible start in life!





Literature Reviews




Animal Abuse:

Dog Bite Prevention:

Cosmetic Procedures:


Pet Selection:

The AVMA's Animal Welfare Conversation on LinkedIn