Dog owners in Canada and U.S. attempting in-home neutering

Canada has been dealing with a rash of dog owners who are crudely attempting to neuter their own pets.

The United States may face the same problem if the trend spreads.

According to CTV News in Saskatoon, Canada, the Saskatchewan Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) is fielding increasing reports from veterinarians who are treating dogs that have been neutered by their owners.

One of the more common neutering methods attempted in these incidents involves tightening an elastrator band above the testicles to cut off circulation. While the method is commonly used on livestock, it is far less effective for dogs. Kaley Pugh, manager of the SPCA, told CTV News that dogs often lick or chew the area constricted by the elastrator band, causing damage that is prone to infection and necrosis.

The problem isn’t confined to Canada, according to Huffington Post. The past year has produced multiple cases of home neutering in the United States including a lab/pit bull mix in Montana and a golden retriever puppy in Maryland.

The practice of home neutering is illegal, but some people may be attempting it to avoid paying a neutering fee of around $150 to $200.

Daphna Nachminovitch, senior vice-president of PETA's Cruelty Investigations Department, explained to Huffington Post that pet owners attempting the surgery to avoid veterinary costs are committing an unnecessary crime.

“Both in the U.S. and in Canada there are low cost spay and neuter programs and low subsidies," Nachminovitch said. "I think this is sheer ignorance and laziness.”