Ethics of Castration
Why am I against neutering my companion animal? Well, the basic answer is pretty simple: I don't want to be neutered myself; I don't want my gonads mutilated... I don't want to lose my gender. I think on my companion animals as friends. Subjecting them to something that I myself could not tolerate just doesn't seem very friendly to me. It's as simple as the Golden Rule.
People say, "but animals don't think like that, they don't care if they are neutered or not."
I do not subscribe to this theory because neutering alters many behavioral and physical characteristics; it must therefore alter attitudes and drives. Neutering devitalizes an animal person and a lot of people see this as an advantage because it makes the animal person easier to control. Spay has been shown to cause nervous disorders in Bitches, resulting in worsened separation anxiety and even digestive issues. In Wolves, a spayed female's scent changes and thus they need to be separated from their pack or they could be harassed to death by pack members because they are viewed as outsiders.
Billions of years of trial and error have gone into the complexity of living organisms. If gonads were simply isolated organs of reproduction then removing them would not be such a consequential issue; but these organs serve a complex interrelated function, involving mental and physical development. Sex hormones regulate many biological processes other than reproduction and have a bearing on social interaction between creatures themselves. Human beings are not wise enough to understand but a mere fraction of the methodologies of God and Nature; to presume such is the folly of fools. People haven't a clue what our animal companions may think of neuter or how their animal friends may regard themselves after being de-sexed.
Another reason I'm against neuter is because people keep telling me that I'm irresponsible for keeping intact animal beings. People seem to use the sexual mutilation of their "pets" as a soapbox to stand on and hoist up their egos. They might as well say, "Oh, I'm better then you because I had my dog's sex gouged out!"
Bob (your) Barker's "be a responsible pet owner, have your dog or cat spayed or neutered" is a perfect example of how people try to guilt-control others into thoughtless acts of barbarity. For those of you living under a rock, Bob Barker was the famous game show host of "The Price is Right." The fact is his slogan was not even intelligent; spay and neuter are two words that mean the same thing. Population control of domestic animal persons is a serious issue, as is the population control of human animal persons, which are totally running amok! Maybe human beings should do first by example and get themselves castrated first!
Through years of observation I have determined that people do not want a dog... people want something that looks like a dog.
I am NOT irresponsible for keeping my companions intact. To the contrary I am MORE responsible. To care for an intact animal person and prevent them from mating requires a good deal more responsibility that most people possess. This is why neutering is so popular; people are lazy and would rather surgically carve their canine into a servile plaything than deal with a whole being.
Well, fine... if your ethic is the Descartian ideal that animal beings are just soulless machines and the only way you can manage to prevent superfluous life is to go out and neuter your "pet," then so be it, but don't look down your nose on those of us who choose not to do this by calling us irresponsible!
Another thing that troubles me about neutering involves the radical people I call Neuter Nazis. These people think on themselves as much better than thou. These hypocrites frequently operate "animal shelters" and "rescues" while breeding animal persons themselves. Neuter Nazis are snoods that want to know everything about everyone and snoop into their lives, under the guise of looking for a good home, while thinking they know what's best for everybody. Control freaks and dictators, the lot of them. These people develop adoption contracts the size of telephone books... which are hardly legal and impossible to make binding. These contracts demand neuter as a prerequisite of adoption regardless of the adopting person's ethic or spiritual beliefs. What is important to Neuter Nazis is a political agenda, NOT the health and welfare of animal persons.
Note that castration is considered immoral by Judaism and Islam and that there are laws against castration in the Old Testament of the Bible. Leviticus 22:24: "And that which is mauled or crushed or torn or cut you shall not offer unto the Lord; nor should you do this in your land." It seems there were moral beings in ancient times having great consternation against acts of castration.
Jewish Prohibition Against Castration
"You must not offer to the Lord an animal whose testicles are bruised, crushed, torn or cut. You must not do this in your own land..."
The Gemara (Talmud Shabbos 110b and Talmud Baba Metzia 90a-b) Vayikra/Leviticus 22:24