Both dog and cat currently at vet getting their gonads removed. There was a lot of pressure to do it - esp from other dog owners - but I had read up a lot of counter-arguments, mostly from Scandinavian countries (in Norway it's illegal to neuter dogs). This was why I sat on the fence about it for 5 years.
But since the dog's aggression towards other dogs was getting worse, and since we had already arranged to get his kitten bro's balls removed, better at the same time... https://social.coop/media/-JGeSaWW2xTUTatanM4
@Gin Kinda easy for Norway, they can't have a wild cat problem with their climate. But cats, after humans, are probably one of the worst and most widespread destroyers of ecosystems out there. Avoiding accidental litters of wildcats is every owner's responsibility, IMO. To a lesser degree dogs; third most deadly animal by human deaths per year, after mosquitos and snakes, IIRC.
@cathal Yeah, it was a no brainer for the cat (even though he lives inside, didn't want to risk it in case he escapes - he's a street cat himself!), but for the dog was another story. He's the sweetest, most loving dog - even gets along well with the cat! - we'll see if the dog's temperament changes and whether it reduces his aggression towards other male dogs. I'm going to write it all up- hopefully it helps someone else. Still can't help feeling a bit... helpless? Sceptical? 50 shades of shit?
@Gin It can take a few weeks or months for the endocrine effects to translate into different behaviour, so be patient. And don't feel guilty; dogs are clever and empathetic, but they aren't human. Their emotional response to things like neutering probably have little in common with us drastically-more-sexual humans. We attach social roles, emotional need, and life purpose to sex, dogs don't seem to. He'll be grand. :)
@cathal I'm sure he will but I wouldn't be surprised if the castration procedure itself is frowned upon in the future once a less invasive method is popularised. The way dog's affect is currently understood is that they don't have the introceptive sensations, emotional concepts and shared social reality as humans, sure. But unfortunately for me, I can't rationalise away the shit feeling of knowing my healthy dog is currently enduring a surgical procedure to make him forcefully adapt to my needs
@cathal Haha, nope. I just don't have the emotional granularity to pinpoint where I'm currently at (except that it's unpleasant and agitated), most probably because I don't chop off my dog's bollocks off every other day and don't need an emotional concept for it as a result. However, how this feeling can extend to people using surgery to forcefully make others adapt to social convention (ala frontal lobotomies on young women back in the day) - yeah, I think it's worth more thought.