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Hi everybody, we are new boxer owners, having adopted a 7 year old mom and her 2 year old son about 2 months ago. We are so happy we did - they are amazing dogs! Anyway - we had the boy neutered after we got him, but I wanted to get input on whether or not we should have the mom get a spay with gastropexy at 7 years old or not. All of our other dogs (not boxers) have been fixed, and all of them when they were much younger, so we've never had to consider getting a dog spayed at an older age... But we have never had dogs who are at higher risk for bloat. She's not terribly large chested, but the vet said it's more the breed rather than the actual individual physical size that places them at a higher risk. So my questions are - should we put her through the surgery (spay, as well gastropexy) at her age? If she's made it to 7 without health problems or problems with bloat, is she less likely for an occurrence and is it therefore less necessary? Any advice is appreciated!
 

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Thanks! Just from the past couple of months, I've learned that boxers and their owners are a special and tight knit group! There's such a wealth of info on this site, I'm sure I'll be here a lot!
Jill
 

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i too want to thank you for adopting them that was a wonderful thing to do and welcome in! They look like they are very happy dogs. That spay / neuter question has been floating around for quite a while now with some experts saying yes it’s better and no it’s not. I have two Boxers at this time I have my female who is spayed my male is not neutered I chose not to have the gastropexy on either of them. It’s a painful and bloody surgery that can come with risks, as far as spaying the older female it really depends on what you as her owner are comfortable with I’m not sure how much longer she will be coming into heat anyway and there is always a risk putting them under for surgery. Since all the others in your house are altered I don’t think her being intact will be a huge problem as long as you are prepared to deal with it. The bloat thing can be an issue for Boxers but you can manage this risk to some extent I have strict rules where my dogs are concerned regarding feeding time they are fed 3 hrs before any activity takes place meaning I get up super early to feed before our morning walk/ activity with quiet time before/after eating they are fed 2x a day on schedule no running playing after eating. I do know of a dog that passed away from bloat even though the gatropexy was done so that’s not absolute protection I thing meal time awareness and what the dog is fed matters more but that’s just my opinion.
 

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I'll chime in, beautiful pair of dogs and so glad they have found a wonderful home. I lost my boxer a few years back due to a brain tumor, he was only 5. I now have standard poodles who are also prone to bloat. I contemplated having my one neutered and a gastroplexy. I only had him neutered. He was about 14 months old, as it is suggested now that large dogs not be prior to age 2 after their bones have finished growing. Boxer tend not to be long lived it seems. If you can deal with the heat cycles and you are 100 percent sure you can keep her from being impregnated, I likely would not spay or do a gastro. but thats me without any real knowledge. I am hoping Kari will chime in here as a breeder who is knowledgable on many aspects. My thought though is if she were to get pregnant that could be worse for her as a senior dog.
So part of me leans toward the spay but not the gastro at this point. I am guessing she has not previously bloated. You will just need to watch activity before and after eating. My dogs eat at 6 am and do not get free run/play till after 11, at night they are fed at 4 and at that point they really are done with any heavy type of exercise. Just a short walk before bed. Any as you can see my thoughts are a bit mixed. Those are two beautiful boxers.
 

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Thanks for the input, and I welcome any input from others as well. Yes, we are so lucky they came into our lives! After losing our lab-ridgeback in July at 14 1/2, and our smaller mixed dog in November at 15 1/2, we were heartbroken, and our house seemed SOO empty and quiet. So when we saw a posting about somebody moving off island (we live in Hawaii) and wanting to keep them together, we went to meet them. The previous owner was having a hard time getting people to agree to take both of them, and they are obviously so attached to each other that he didn't want to split them up.... He was moving less than a week later, we have always had 2 dogs, so we were happy that we could adopt them together! And it's been such an easy transition! It's been great! They've obviously been well loved and cared for their whole lives. The only concerns have been worrying to spay/not to spay (and coming with gastropexy or not) and also the leash reactive behaviors they have when we are walking them around the neighborhood and encounter other dogs. We're still working on that - I've been non-stop reading this site for advice on curbing this! Anyway, again, thanks for the help and input about your own experiences!
 

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Thanks for the input, and I welcome any input from others as well. Yes, we are so lucky they came into our lives! After losing our lab-ridgeback in July at 14 1/2, and our smaller mixed dog in November at 15 1/2, we were heartbroken, and our house seemed SOO empty and quiet. So when we saw a posting about somebody moving off island (we live in Hawaii) and wanting to keep them together, we went to meet them. The previous owner was having a hard time getting people to agree to take both of them, and they are obviously so attached to each other that he didn't want to split them up.... He was moving less than a week later, we have always had 2 dogs, so we were happy that we could adopt them together! And it's been such an easy transition! It's been great! They've obviously been well loved and cared for their whole lives. The only concerns have been worrying to spay/not to spay (and coming with gastropexy or not) and also the leash reactive behaviors they have when we are walking them around the neighborhood and encounter other dogs. We're still working on that - I've been non-stop reading this site for advice on curbing this! Anyway, again, thanks for the help and input about your own experiences!
Jilla, as for the leash walking, try the easy walk halter and attach it to there collar. You will have much more control and a pleasurable walk.
 
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