How Much Does it Cost to Neuter a Dog?

Mychelle Blake
Veterinarians with a dog

Altering your dog is all part of being a responsible dog owner, both for preventing pet overpopulation and keeping your dog healthy. Pricing for this surgery will vary across regions of the United States, as well as by veterinarian. Complications and extra services offered at your clinic may also cause the price to vary.

Cost of Neutering

The procedure for neutering your dog can vary from $200 per dog to as much as $300. While prices can range by region, the difference is not significant.

Regional Pricing for Neutering

Banfield Pet Hospitals is one of the largest providers of veterinary services in the country with over 900 locations across the U.S. They have a handy calculator on their website you can use to estimate the cost of spay/neuter surgeries at one of their many clinics. Estimated prices for a basic canine castration package can run from $299 in Las Vegas, Chicago, and Los Angeles to $359 in New York City.

Low-Cost Options

Most major cities have some low-cost options available for residents to help with the cost of the surgery. Both the ASPCA and the SpayUSA websites have a searchable database for low-cost or even free local programs. The surgery charge at a clinic averages from $45 to $135 for a male dog and $50 to $175 for a female dog. The spay surgery costs a bit more than neutering because it is somewhat more complicated. While both surgeries involve sterilizing the pet, neutering involves removing the testicles which is known as an orchiectomy. Spaying, on the other hand, involves taking out the uterus and ovaries, which in medical terms, is an ovariohysterectomy.

Itemized Costs

If you were to review a typical bill for a sterilization surgery at a full-service veterinary clinic, you would see the costs include:

  • Female veterinarian with a dog
    The physical exam (required before giving anesthesia)
  • IV catheter and fluids
  • Monitors for blood pressure, heart rate, blood oxygen level and temperature
  • Administration of anesthesia
  • Sterilization surgery
  • Sutures
  • Pain medication (usually an injection right after surgery and then medication to take home to give the dog later)

Some clinics may also include an e-collar for the dog to wear post-surgery. Among lower-cost clinics that primarily do spay and neuters, you may find items such as the physical exam, IV fluids, vitals monitoring and e-collar, and post-surgery medication are not included. Omitting these items is how low-cost clinics can keep their costs down to provide you with a lower price.

Reasons Prices May Increase

Prices can increase based on a dog's weight as heavier dogs require more anesthesia. This is why you will often see pricing listed in tiers by weight. There are also other situations where you might see the cost of sterilization surgery increase.

  • If there are any complications, such as a female dog being in heat or an undescended testicle, the procedure may also be more expensive depending on the veterinarian.
  • If you have a pregnant dog, spaying her can cost around $100 more.
  • Many veterinarians also suggest blood work before anesthesia for an additional fee.
  • Pain medication can cost on average $30.
  • Some vets also require your dog to be up-to-date on vaccinations before the surgery which can incur additional costs depending on the vaccine needed.

Shop Around for Pricing

If you're ready to have your dog sterilized, call around to both full-service veterinarian offices and low-cost clinics to see what your total bill will cover. Every clinic will have different requirements which can increase or decrease your fees. When finding the best option to spay or neuter your dog, it pays to be an informed consumer and research services in your area.

How Much Does it Cost to Neuter a Dog?