In my experience working alongside people of a wide variety of backgrounds in the dog world, there are few questions that get such variation in the claims made. I’ve heard anecdotal accounts from those who swear neutering has one affect or another (many accounts even claiming opposite effects), or that doing so at certain ages has certain affects, as well as others who quite confidently claim there is no affect on behavior. Sadly, the scientific studies that have tried to address this get just as varied of results.
To me, personally, this leads to a great deal of doubt that there is any *consistent* effect. I don’t necessarily doubt that some individuals may have some changes, but I doubt there is any meaningful pattern that can be inferred. And as such I’d suggest that concerns about behavior (one way or the other) should not influence ones choice on whether or not, or when, to spay/neuter.
There is better data, however, on potential impacts on the dog’s long term health. I’ll leave recommendations based on the pet’s health in the hands of the veterinarian, but suggest that the veterinarian’s recommendation on what the best approach for the dogs health should be the deciding factor of when to spay or neuter.
Don’t get me wrong – I’m all for sharing any experiences anyone has here on this thread. I’d just like to suggest that anyone still deciding on when to spay or neuter their dog perhaps should not be swayed by very limited information about how it *might* affect their behavior when there may be more concrete information on how it *will* impact their health.