About Elle Grant

Rolls Royce sunset

Rolls-Royce: Year in Review

2021 proved a record-breaking year for Rolls-Royce. The clientele of the long-time luxury brand grew even greater this past year, indicating the continued craftsmanship and extravagance of this beloved automaker.

Chief Executive of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, Torsten Müller-Ötvös, reflected positively on the achievement of the brand in 2021. Müller-Ötvös stated, “In what has been an unprecedented and unpredictable year, the House of Rolls-Royce has delivered the highest-ever annual sales results in the marque’s 117-year history. In 2021, we delivered 5,586 motor cars to clients around the world, having worked closely with clients to further expand the boundaries of creativity within our Bespoke Collective. This has resulted in some truly remarkable commissions.

“Rolls-Royce has once again demonstrated an innate understanding of craftsmanship, honing progressive and proprietary techniques amongst our highly skilled and talented team. Artisans continue to further the realm of Bespoke feasibility; precious and rare materials are used with ingenuity to create world-class examples of excellence in their field.”

With this powerful indicator of Rolls-Royce on the rise, 360 Magazine recaps the 2021 Bespoke highlights for Rolls-Royce.

WRAITH KRYPTOS

The final collection of Wraith Kryptos was seen this past year, showcasing intricate and hidden ciphers throughout each car. Emphasis on hidden, each Wraith Kryptos is equipped with secret ciphers only a Rolls-Royce client could decipher, reminiscent of a rewarding puzzle.

These so-called “puzzles” found throughout the model were dreamt up and sent to the home of Rolls-Royce in Goodwood for review. Ultimately, sections of these riddles have been deciphered by cipher fanatics and Rolls-Royce clientele, but the final resolution remains unsolved.

KENGO KUMA DAWN

Together, Rolls-Royce and Kengo Kuma combined the realms of extravagant automobiles and awe-inducing architecture to produce the Bespoke Rolls-Royce Dawn. This singular motor car emulates the feelings of glamour and opulence, much like the inspiration for the car of The Kita building in central Tokyo.

The overall design and aesthetic of Dawn will have drivers feeling as opulent as ever. With an exterior in the shade of Silver Haze, a silver-gray color, it mimics the appearance of The Kita’s structure. The shade of the exterior shifts when positioned in direct sunlight, illuminating a rich bronze shine. The outer style of the car comes complete with a silver hood and black coach line. Merging the interior and exterior is the open-pore royal walnut paneling showcased on the rear deck. This enhancement references the walnut paneling seen on ‘The Kita’s’ entrance lobby. The construction in this collaboration speaks to both companies’ eye towards detail.

GHOST EXTENDED URBAN SANCTUARY

Renowned for its purely lavish design philosophy, the Ghost Extended has a unique Bespoke trek. The Ghost Extended Urban Sanctuary prioritizes top material construction rather than aiming to make a bold statement. Inspiration for the automobile comes from a particular building within Shanghai’s Yu Yuan Gardens. The building has a unique ‘cracked ice’ effect on its wooden window shutters, emulated in the Ghost Extended through stitched panels in the seat inserts.

Regarding the detailed design intricacies of the Ghost Extended, the interior showcases a deep Navy Blue and Cashmere Grey color story. The colorway draws a distinctive and rare story whether one is driving themselves around or are being chauffeured. This chauffeur storyline continues through the reclinable Serenity Seating in the Urban Sanctuary. The easily reclinable seats make it seem as though one is taking a ride on a private jet.

Finishing off design elements, the Urban Sanctuary exterior is cast in gunmetal and jubilee silver, offset by a bold lime green coach line and wheel pinstripe. The edgy lime green color is showcased to mimic Shanghai’s nighttime neon lights.

Rolls Royce Cullinan

DREAM GHOST

Ghost Extended is the spitting image of the first-ever personalized Illuminated Fascia. This first-of-its-kind request came from the South Florida luxury collector, David Bartosiak. Mr. Bartosiak had a vision for his personal automobile, calling upon the Rolls-Royce Bespoke Collective. His request entailed the Illuminated Fascia to say ‘DREAM’ instead of ‘GHOST.’

He declared, “This wish speaks of the dream I had as a young boy, born under that beautiful night sky in 1983 in Vero Beach, Florida, the dream I instill in those around me every day, and the dream I hope my spirit carries on to the world when I’m gone.”

This incredible one-of-a-kind Starlight Headliner of Mr. Bartosiak’s features an astronomical alignment of the stars in the interior. The alignment references the sky over Vero Beach, Florida, on the day of his birth in 1983, as illustrated in 1,236 single fiber optic lights.

BESPOKE WRAITH IN PEBBLE PARADISO

Another specific commission came from a client based in Shanghai; she requested a rare Bespoke Wraith in the Pebble Paradiso blue color. The client referred to the automobile as her own “Shanghai seaside-inspired paradise.” The car features a hand-painted coachline in a Seashell hue, with a delicate orchid motif. This further exemplifies the client’s desire for sophistication combined with uniqueness.

The interior of the automobile showcases why the car is a true piece of artwork; a baby girl’s footprints are shown on the Piano White monitor lid. This enhancement references the client’s beloved, cherished daughter. The interior, too, has a two-tone design of Charles blue and seashell in natural grain leather.

CULLINAN 50th

A rare Cullinan was produced in 2021 to celebrate the United Arab Emirates’ (UAE) historic Golden Jubilee. The exterior of the car is polished to perfection in crystal over artic white, with a hand-painted double coachline, the upper line in hotspur red, the lower in fame green. The power of style was continued with a gold bullion coach line motif, the national flag in hotspur red, fame green, and black on the C-Pillar Motif, showcasing a unique double wheel-center pinstripe.

The interior illustrates treadplates that read ‘50th.’ The interior design mimics that of the exterior, with arctic white, black, and hotspur red leather, in contrast to a fame green contrast stitch of the UAE’s emblem upon each headrest. The showpiece of the car is the gold 50th-anniversary motif decked in the fascia, rear waterfall, and picnic tabletops.

CULLINNAN IN PIKES PEAK BLUE

Car enthusiasts Ben and Christine Sloss were in search of a Bespoke Rolls-Royce Black Badge Cullinan from Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Los Gatos.

A colorway typically not shown in Bespoke of pikes peak blue, the color references the Colorado hill-climb, a beloved experience of the clients. Pops of forge yellow spice up the color story in the hand-painted coachline, wheel-center pinstripes, and brake calipers, the Black Badge Cullinan showcases the use of the colors in the flag of Modena. The doors of the Black Badge Cullinan are embellished with Mrs. Sloss’ racing logo – a formal stiletto.

PHANTOM ORIBE

A once-in-a-lifetime collaboration saw Rolls-Royce and the House of Hermès come together to create a Bespoke Phantom for Japanese entrepreneur Yusaku Maezawa. Phantom Oribe is a motor car named mimicking the client’s world-class collection of ancient Japanese ceramics, Oribe ware. The client’s private jet was able to showcase the use of Rolls-Royce paint to create a matched set with the Phantom.

The interior is finished in Hermès Enea green leather. A first for Rolls-Royce, the door armrests, center, rear consoles and, most particularly, the signature headliner is equipped with the famed Hermès ‘Toile H’ canvas.

PHANTOM TEMPUS COLLECTION

The Phantom Tempus Collection narrowed to 20 examples of Rolls-Royce Phantoms. A new edition of the Phantom notes the concept of time – how it goes and how it can ostensibly stand still.

The aesthetic of the design for this project hints at themes of time and the cosmos. One key theory imposed into the design comes from the pulsar, a mysterious astronomical phenomenon found only in the deepest sections of the galaxy. The pulsar is essentially a complex, white-hot star that sends electromagnetic radiation in pulses, hence making it a common suggestion of precise clocks through the universe.

The exterior of the Phantom Tempus Collection is dripping in a new Bespoke paint of kairos blue. The rich color symbolizes the uncertainty and deepness of space. To further the cosmos inspiration, the paint features jewel-like blue mica flakes that glint when caught by the light.

PHANTOM KOA

Another first for Rolls-Royce comes with the Phantom Koa – it is the first Rolls- Royce Phantom to use Koa wood. Koa wood is a unique species of tree only found growing in the Hawaiian soil. Inspired by car enthusiast Jack Boyd Smith, Jr. and his wife Laura, the car captures the essence of the tenderness and character of Koa.

Koa is guarded by state and national parks, and it only grows in Hawaii. The only way to harvest the wood is from private agricultural land, making it as rare as you can get. A Rolls-Royce Wood Specialist refers to the ability to find Koa as a ‘one in a million chance.’

Mr. Smith’s Bespoke commission took almost three years of cooperation to generate, but it is now a part of his collection of motor cars in the JBS Collection Museum.

Rolls Royce image

LANDSPEED COLLECTION

Another limited collection, the Landspeed Collection consists of 25 examples of Black Badge Dawn and 35 of Black Badge Wraith. The creativity for the collection came from George Eyston’s noteworthy life and accomplishments. Hints of the landscape of the Bonneville Salt Flats, where Thunderbolt made himself the fastest man on Earth, are incorporated into the collection as well.

Throughout George Eyston’s life, he was awarded three major honors: the Military Cross, the Chevalier of the Légion d’honneur, and the Order of the British Empire (OBE). Each of these honors is prominent in the Black Badge Wraith and Dawn Landspeed. Clever easter eggs that reference the original medal ribbons are placed throughout the cars in the driver’s door, as it was made from the same Grosgrain weave silk of the medals.

CULLINAN ‘BLACK AND BRIGHT’

Imagined with the essence of Moscow at night comes the design of the Black Badge Cullinan ‘Black and Bright’ by Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Moscow. The 2021 model of the Black Badge Wraith ‘Black and Bright’ was an elevated design of the model popular two years ago.

Found only at the Muscovite dealership, this narrow collection showcases five Black Badge Cullinans. Each car is available in edgy color combos of magma red, orange metallic, twilight purple, forge yellow, and turchese. Black Badge Cullinan’s Technical Carbon veneer is individualized to a corresponding color inlay design, while starlight headliner matches the exterior and interior highlights.

ROLLS-ROYCE COACHBUILD: BOAT TAIL

Coachbuilding is promised as a long-lasting feature of Rolls-Royce after the production of three Boat Tails amidst the contemporary coachbuilding development.

The process of coachbuilding is an extremely refined tactic of Rolls-Royce Bespoke, set aside for those who are looking to push the boundaries and seek change.

Boat Tail is a handcrafted creation, where bodywork and interior are produced with the client’s eye to exact requirements. A Boat Tail tells the story of Rolls-Royce’s deep history, while still offering a new, modern design.

The first of the three Boat Tails were exhibited at Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este in October, 2021. The second will make its first appearance at Villa d’Este 2022.

Bellabeat Ivy

Bellabeat Ivy for Valentine’s Day

In thinking about the perfect Valentine’s Day gift for the special woman in your life, consider combining fashion, fitness, and function with a Bellabeat Ivy. In four different colors with an elegant design, Bellabeat Ivy is leagues above the other health and wellness wearables.

Bellabeat Ivy is designed specifically for the modern woman. It is the ideal gift for a new mom, someone tracking their fertility, a new teen who has just gotten her period and is learning to track her cycle for the first time, and more. For women in the later stages of life and going through menopause, it is an excellent tool to track symptoms and a changing body. There are no other elegant smart bracelets – receive compliments on what looks like an elegant piece of jewelry while its features aid the gym-obsessed, health-conscious woman in your life.

The unique features combined with the sleek design make Bellabeat Ivy one of a kind; read on to see its unique capabilities highlighted below.

Elegantly Designed

Among health and fitness trackers, Ivy stands out with a fashionable, edgy look that can match any style. With no display, Ivy’s non-intrusive design keeps your data private and visible only when you sync it with the Bellabeat app.

Know Your Readiness Score Each Day For 2022

Are you all set to go out and smash your goals, or do you need to slow down and shorten your to-do list? Ivy will tell you. Imagine replacing your hectic morning with a new, data-powered ritual that helps you plan the day in total sync with your body. While you sleep at night and your body is in its calmest state, Ivy measures your resting heart rate, respiratory rate, and cardiac coherence.

Why those parameters? Because they reveal your bio-response to recent activities, stress, and emotions. In the morning, when synced with the Bellabeat app, Ivy calculates your readiness score – how ready you are for the day on a scale from 0 to 100.

Your Self-Care Amplified

How you spend your day matters. Ivy monitors your activity, sleep, meditation, menstrual cycle, and hydration log and compares it to standards that are measured on women like you!

At the end of the day, your lifestyle data is processed into your wellness score, showing how well you are taking care of yourself. The more you drink water, exercise, or meditate, the higher the score. Ivy is the wellness assistant that cheers for you and motivates you to do your best.

Track your heart rate 24/7

Discover your stress response and reach your goals in the number of steps, active minutes, and calories burnt. Ivy monitors your heart rate (HR) and activities to help you make healthier choices.

  • Active Heart Rate
  • Steps
  • Active Minutes
  • Calorie Burn

Fast Charging

The Ivy recharges in 90 mins and lasts up to 8 days. In the world of wearables, Ivy’s battery life exceeds all screen-based trackers by ten times! Its battery also lives two times longer compared to other no-display trackers.

Unmatched Cycle Tracking

How much do you know about the ‘fifth vital sign’? Ivy helps you to sync with your body and discover its natural wisdom by correlating your biometric and lifestyle data to the four phases of the menstrual cycle. Ivy helps you tune into your body’s rhythm and track your period, ovulation, pregnancy, or birth control. Monitor your changes in the menstrual cycle, log symptoms, and even predict issues before they appear.

The Ivy is truly terrific for new moms, women working to get a handle on postpartum symptoms as well as women who need a better handle on recurring symptoms during each menstrual cycle and reproductive health.

It Comes With “The Coach”

With Ivy, women automatically receive a complimentary Coach Premium membership that works as your guide, based on expert support and Bellabeat’s medical board standing behind all the content in the app, developed in sync with women’s cycles in mind. The Coach incorporates the woman’s monthly cycle as an umbrella for its insights and Coach recommendations closely track the period cycle to provide personalized holistic wellness content. This means that there is finally a Coach that can suggest to women what to eat, exercise, or what meditation to practice for each stage of our cycle.

The App Provides over 30 Sleep Meditations

Sleep meditations are the most common remedy for sleep problems. They help your body transition to sleep easier and raise your chances of entering the deep sleep stage. In the Bellabeat app, you can find more than 30 sleep meditations that can help you relax and unwind. Each meditation tracks within your connected Ivy and will tell you daily how well you are doing with stress levels and more.

The Bellabeat Ivy retails for $249 and can be purchased here.

Rupaul's drag race for 360 magazine.

New Season of RPDR

By: Skyler Johnson

Rupaul’s Drag Race, the hit competition series on VH1 revolving around drag queens, recently entered its fourteenth season. Fourteen new queens have set foot in the workroom over the span of two episodes, each from very different backgrounds and upbringings. Some are pageant queens (participants in drag pageants, similar to beauty pageants) and some are club queens (queens known for performing in clubs). Either way, they want to snatch the crown. Here is everything you need to know about this season’s competitors.

Alyssa Hunter

Alyssa is this season’s only Puerto Rican queen, though many queens from the island have been successful in the show, including Yara Sofia, Alexis Mateo, and Cynthia Lee Fontaine. Hunter competed in, and won, all four of Puerto Rico’s biggest pageants, and became known for her sense of fashion.

Angeria Paris VanMichaels

VanMichaels hails from Atlanta, Georgia, and is a pageant queen. Described as a “Southern Belle serving fierce fashion and face with a country charm,” Angeria already appears to be a frontrunner in the competition with a mini- and maxi-challenge win under her belt (and all in one episode).

Bosco

Bosco, from Seattle, has a lot to live up to given she’s from the same city as Drag Race royalty Jinkx Monsoon and BenDeLaCreme. Bosco identifies as the “demon queen” and “skanky alternative girl” from Seattle. Her drag character is seductive and elusive, and she takes a lot of inspiration from movie villains. She considers herself a “millennial Elvira.”

Daya Betty

Daya Betty, the drag daughter of season 12 runner-up Crystal Methyd, is notable for her punk rock aesthetics. Betty has already produced several intriguing looks, including a stone bust look for her Entertainment Weekly interview.

Deja Skye

DeJa Skye is a camp queen from Fresno, California. She has a passion for, “food, makeup, and everything fabulous.” She works as a dance and cheer instructor during the day, so you’ll know she’ll produce some sickening dance moves on the main stage.

Jasmine Kennedie

Kennedie is this season’s only New York representation. In interviews with her competitors, the other queens noted her to be the season’s most dramatic queen, so it’ll be interesting to see how she’ll do.

Jorgeous

Jorgeous, from season 14, is both the youngest competitor (21) and the shortest. She’s a fashion queen from Tennessee, popular as a club queen as well as being a noted dancer.

June Jambalaya

One of the many Los Angeles-based queens to come out of this season, June Jambalaya is originally from Jacksonville, Florida, and is influenced by the South and The Real Housewives franchise, the latter being where she crafted her drag persona.

Kerri Colby

Colby, self-described as an “otherworldly ‘alien’ goddess from the ‘7th dimension,’” is notable as a pageant queen and the drag daughter of Sasha Colby, a famous drag queen and winner of Miss Continental 2012. She’s also a member of the Haus of Colby, a popular drag family. Known for her beautiful visage, she is a clear contender for the crown.

Kornbread “The Snack” Jete

Kornbread is a camp queen popular in the LA club circuit. She first gained internet notoriety acting in the videos of popular sketch comedian Brandon Rodgers playing various characters. Beloved amongst other LA queens for her energy and fun personality, it’ll be intriguing to see where this season takes her.

Lady Camden

San Francisco’s Lady Camden, originally from Camden town in England, is a British queen known for being ladylike in her fashion and choreography, but bawdy in her humor. A ballet dancer, she once performed in Smuin ballet. She is also the third ever queen from San Francisco (the other two being Rock M. Sakura and Honey Mahofany) and is the show’s oldest contestant at 31.

Maddy Morphosis

Morphosis, from Arkansas, is by far the most controversial queen of the season, and one of the most controversial contestants of all time in the series, for being the first cisgender straight man to enter the competition. Many fans of the show have spoken against her for this reason, given Drag Race is known as a safe haven for members of the LGBT community. She currently has a partner, who is also a drag queen, and worked at Target before entering the competition 

Orion Story

Michigan camp queen Orion Story describes her drag style as “chaotic,” and “what you get when you put Barbarella on a runway on Sesame Street.” She also won Miss Michigan Drag Queen of the Year, and is the first Michigan queen to grace the runway.

Willow Pill

Willow Pill is a comedy and camp queen from Denver, known for her offbeat sense of humor and surreal performances, such as in “Digital Drag Show,” a trippy, weird video on her Youtube channel. She is also the drag daughter of season 11 winner Yvie Oddly.

Maria Becerra inside 360 Magazine.

SPOTLIGHT ON MARÍA BECERRA

María Becerra is a tour de force. The Argentinian songstress, known as “la nena de Argentina” released her second EP in 2021, embracing and experimenting with hip-hop, reggaeton, trap, R&B, salsa, and more to craft her new sound. Described as a “leading voice in Argentina’s urban pop movement,” Becerra is a star on the rise. As the first Latin artist signed to indie American record label 300 Entertainment and with a Latin Grammy Award for Best New Artist pending, it is clear despite her successes already, she is only just beginning. She sat down to answer a few questions for 360 Magazine including how she got her start in music, the story behind her nickname, her influences, and what to expect from her in 2022.

How would you describe your style of music?

I believe I have a very melodic and versatile musical style. In the studio, we always try to ensure that each song has a varied melodic line, with different degrees of nuances. Above all, we aspire to make a melody that sounds familiar and enjoyable to the public. I have experimented with several genres and in all of them, I was able to find how to make my own style fit within them. I hear they call me ‘the Queen of Weeping,” which makes me laugh. I have many songs that are for dogging and dancing, and others that are a bit sadder.

How did you first become interested in creating music?

From a very young age, art was important to me; I learned how to sing, act and dance as a child. In my home, we listened to a lot of music. For a while, I did covers of famous songs as I learned. I think I was absorbing different music and styles to the point where I felt the need to start expressing myself with my own works. Despite this desire, I was not 100% confident in my abilities yet and had many insecurities. I was afraid of how the public would receive my music and doubted if this was my true path. Luckily, things turned out in a positive way. Today, I have no doubts that yes, I was born to create music and it brings me a lot of joy.

Which songs are you most proud of?

Mm, they are all special to me and fill me with pride. It is difficult for me to pick just one. If I had to choose one, my first instinct is to say Ademas De Mi or Mi Debilidad, that song is very significant to me as an artist. I cried a lot while making it and recording the video.

You were a Youtuber before becoming a singer. How was the experience of transitioning from an influencer to an artist?

YouTube was a beautiful experience, and I am grateful that the opportunity was a positive one. The change in my life was progressive over time. Being on YouTube allowed me the chance for people to get to know me, while I gained confidence and worked on my own fears as a public person. Obviously, my life and my career are now on another path but having the experience of being a YouTuber served as the foundation for everything that has gone on to happen in my life.

What is your favorite fan moment?

My favorite moments are when my fans tell me everything in my music speaks to them. It’s amazing how something I pour so much love into in the studio can reach so many people and positively influence their lives. In live concerts, we would raise up different fans to speak with them, and at one performance a girl told us that with my song ‘Tell Me How I Do,’ she declared her love to her girlfriend. I found it beautiful. Those moments fill me with incredible happiness.

Maria Becerra by Christian Garfa 2

How does it feel to have reached this level of popularity so young?

It still doesn’t feel real. It is incredible to me, but I just try and take things one day at a time. I try to appreciate the small things and remain the humble girl I’ve always been because that’s still who I am. I surround myself a lot with my friends, my family, and my pets who are my rocks – they remind me of where I come from and who I am.

Why do you refer to yourself as the Girl from Argentina?

In general, it is known that many of the best discoveries occur accidentally, and this was no exception. When we recorded Animal with Cazzu, in the song’s lyrics I sing “Las Nenas de Argentina,” as if referring to the two of us. Apparently, when people listened, they heard “La nena de Argentina” and everyone loved that I referred to myself that way. From there, I started to use it as my brand, and I feel it gives me a special power for communicating to the world my music and I are made and from Argentina.

Who are your influences?

Wow, so many artists! I especially love and admire Ariana Grande, Beyoncé, and Rihanna. They are very important role models to me. I watch their shows and videos a lot.

How did it feel to join a label as prestigious as 300 Entertainment?

I am honored and very happy to work with them. They have always been supportive, even affectionate, towards me. Unfortunately, their office is in Los Angeles, so we don’t have the opportunity to see each other that often, but when we do it’s always a special moment. I know the whole team at 300 takes care of me and wants the best for me, so I respect them and thank them very much.

Your most recent EP blended many different genres. Which genres would you like to experiment with in the future?

I like Bachata, and I think more songs like this are coming from me. Yet as I said before, I don’t want to pigeonhole myself. I love to experiment with different genres and different sounds, and that is what is important to me as I create music today. So, in 2022 you and all my fans can be surprised with what I come out with next.

What can we expect to see from you in the future?

I feel like 2022 is going to be a great year. My team and I are working hard to make it so. I’m locked in the studio, and many of the songs we are currently working on are tremendous. I am already anxious for people to listen to them. This year, a new album is coming, as well as trips and several shows in Argentina and Europe. We hope to reach many places and have everyone dance and sing to my music.

Maria Becerra inside 360 Magazine 3

Photos: Christian Garfa

Pyometra in Pets

Providing a home for a furry friend can bring an abundance of love into the lives of owners. Many pet owners want to provide the best care possible for their dog or cat, but in order to do this, a key factor is remaining educated. Many know that spaying and neutering are common procedures for household animals, but what exactly are these procedures and what are their benefits? What are the risks, such as pyometra, of negating this responsibility?

With the surge of difficulties the pandemic has brought to being a pet owner, staying vigilant and prepared for the animals owners love is essential. With adoption rates of all kinds of cats and dogs exploding during the pandemic, first-time Gen Z and millennial pet owners might find the world of pet care complicated. Low-income families, whether they are new or already pet owners, have already faced additional hardships during the pandemic, with exorbitant fees for pet emergencies being an additional possible challenge.

In cities and neighborhoods where unfixed and stray animals are common occurrences, the risks of pyometra and other health concerns for humans and animals alike are increasing. In Houston alone, there are a million stray dogs. Other cities like Detroit and the Bronx neighborhood of NYC are challenged, while the geographic regions of the South and the West of the United States are where more strays end up in shelters. With millions of animals without a home, unfixed, and challenged with health issues, it is a serious concern for the U.S., especially those who choose to own pets.

Yet there are solutions, in preparedness through pet insurance and applications to nonprofits, as well as cases in which emergency assistance is possible. Veterinarian Dr. Lauren P. Davidson provides 360 Magazine with insights on these ideas as more, with a focus on keeping owners informed and your pet healthy and happy.

Can you break down what exactly is a spay or neuter?

Spay is the term used to refer to the common veterinary surgery that removes the uterus (the womb) and ovaries of a female animal. Medically, this surgery is known as an ovariohysterectomy. This surgery makes the animal incapable of having offspring.

Neuter is the term used to refer to the common veterinary surgery that removes both testicles of a male animal. This surgery results in the inability of the male to impregnate a female.

What are the ramifications of not having your animal fixed sooner rather than later?

First and foremost, by having your dog or cat spayed or neutered, you prevent them from having unwanted puppies/kittens. Additionally, in the female, you prevent uterine infections (also called pyometra) from developing as well ovarian cancer. Furthermore, by removing the ovaries, the main source of hormones that influence the development of mammary (or breast) cancer is removed and there is a great reduction in the risk of developing this type of cancer. As female animals get older, the surgery can also become more complicated due to the size of the animal or if they have already had multiple litters of puppies/kittens.

In males, the chance of testicular cancer is completely removed once the testicles are surgically removed and there is a reduction in the development of prostate disease as well.  Additionally, neutered male animals typically become less aggressive which results in a lower risk of fighting or aggression toward their owners or other animals.

What are the signs of a female dog having pyometra?

Pyometra, or infection of the uterus, only occurs in female animals. The signs of pyometra in non-spayed female animals can often be non-specific, but early warning signs include the animal feeling unwell, such as vomiting, refusal to eat, lethargy, increased thirst, and frequent urination. She may also appear to be uncomfortable because pyometra is a particularly painful condition for dogs while being somewhat less so for cats. Fever can also be observed.  Symptoms of a pyometra usually begin four to eight weeks after the animal is in heat, and include:

  1. Drinking more than usual.
  2. Vomiting
  3. Pus leaking from vulva/vagina.
  4. Bloated abdomen (tummy)
  5. Panting and weakness.
  6. Off food.
  7. Urinating more than usual.
  8. Collapse

How soon should they be admitted into a veterinarian’s care or ER? if not treated, what will happen to a female cat/dog?

If any of these signs are observed and your animal is not spayed, you should seek veterinary care as soon as possible. If vomiting, fever, or lethargy are noted, the condition is usually more urgent and emergency care (ER) should be sought out if you are unable to immediately visit your regular veterinary clinic. If you have any doubts or are concerned, take your animal to the ER. Since many of the signs of pyometra can also be caused by other medical conditions, it is important to get your pet assessed by a veterinarian as soon as possible.

If left untreated, pyometra can cause your animal can go into shock, kidney failure, or develop severe dehydration. Pyometra is a medical emergency that can be fatal if left untreated.

Are there any resources besides the ASPCA that a pet owner can reach out to online? 

There are several resources online, but as with all things, make sure you consult reputable sources such as your veterinary clinic’s website.  However, do not try to diagnose your animal by what you read online.  You are not a veterinarian and diagnosis and treatment of your animal should be left to a veterinary professional.

Since the pandemic, it has been increasingly difficult to procure an appointment with any veterinarian or pet care facility. In this type of event, what should a pet owner do?

Many veterinary clinics hold a certain number of appointments for emergency or urgent care cases.  Call your veterinarian and inform them of what the problem is and they should be able to provide guidance. Alternatively, you can take your pet to your nearest emergency veterinary clinic (ER).  Keep in mind that many clinics, regular and ER veterinary clinics alike, are not allowing owners to come inside due to the COVID pandemic. Please follow the guidance of the clinic and cooperate with these modified practices to keep everyone safe.

Why is pyometra surgery so expensive?

Pricing of all surgeries includes the procedure itself, anesthesia, required medications for pain, and other medications and materials that are necessary to support your animal through a successful surgery. Post-operative care and the time and expertise of the veterinarians and veterinary technicians are all considerations in pricing as well.

How long is the recovery time

Typically, sutures or surgical staples may be removed by the veterinary clinic in about two weeks.  During this time, it is very important to keep your animal as calm as possible and limit activity to reduce the risk of disturbing the incision site. Your pet may also have to wear a cone to prevent them from licking the incision site which would delay healing.

Is pyometra surgery easily performed? Are there any known complications? If so, why? What factors can be attributed to surgery complications? Age, overall health, or pre-existing conditions?

No, this surgery is not easily performed. Oftentimes, animals that have pyometra have complicating factors, such as fever, dehydration, and metabolic changes that require fluid support and medication. As with all other surgeries, pre-existing conditions must be identified to ensure the animal can be given anesthesia safely, and even still there is always a mild risk of complication.

In this surgical procedure, the veterinarian is removing the uterus which can be filled with a large amount of pus. Therefore, if not done carefully, a general infection can occur. Animals, especially dogs that have had several litters of puppies or those that have been allowed to have several heat cycles, can have very thickened uterine walls which tend to bleed more and make the surgery more complicated. Likewise, animals, where the infection has lasted for days on end, can have a very fragile uterus which makes it even more challenging for the veterinarian to perform the surgery. Due to the serious nature of this condition, we strongly recommend avoiding this scenario completely by spaying your animal.

Is there any way we can or should better educate pet owners about pyometra?

Generally, the ramifications of not spaying your pet, pyometra being one of them, are reviewed by your veterinarian when you first adopt them. Online information sources are also helpful in educating yourself on this condition and others related to not spaying your pet. Don’t be afraid to ask your veterinarians questions!

Once a female cat or dog has successful surgery, can pyometra reoccur?

This is a great question. In uncomplicated, successful surgeries, pyometra should not occur after spaying.  However, there is a small percentage of animals that may develop what’s called a “stump pyometra”. This usually occurs secondary to the presence of a small amount of ovarian tissue left behind during the original spay procedure. Under the influence of ovarian hormones, the small amount of uterine tissue that may remain at the base of the uterus can subsequently become infected. These cases are rare and can be quite challenging to diagnose.

How important is pet insurance? Are there any programs for low-income pet owners to assist with covering such a surgery?

Pet insurance is a great way to put your mind at ease when emergencies arise. There are many plans available which cover major emergencies, routine visits, and vaccinations as well. Check with your home or auto insurance company first to see what plans are available for pet insurance.  Alternatively, there are pet-specific insurance companies and credit-based plans that clinics often have available if you do not already have an established plan.

There are several low-cost veterinary clinics and not-for-profit organizations across the country that assist with veterinary care costs. An online search of national humane organizations and even breed-specific organizations can lead you to multiple resources. Keep in mind, however, that before applying for aid, you should read the organization’s eligibility guidelines, which are usually available on their website. Also, carefully read the application and provide any necessary documentation that would show you meet the eligibility requirements for assistance. The best-case scenario is to explore these options before an emergency occurs.

Is there anything you wish to add that we haven’t already gone over?

Owning a pet can bring a wealth of joy and happiness to your life! It is a long-term commitment and one that can be quite expensive over time. Pyometra is one medical condition that can be prevented by spaying your pet early on. Take the time to learn as much as you can about pet ownership before you decide to make that commitment and be sure to consult with your local veterinarian to provide the best care for your pet.

About Dr. Lauren Davidson

Dr. Lauren Davidson is a practicing veterinarian and public health professional in the Washington, D.C. area. She has a passion for educating the public on animal care and how it impacts human well-being. A graduate of the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine, Dr. Davidson works in biomedical animal health compliance and has worked with underserved communities across the country to provide veterinary care and education. She enjoys spending time with her two rescues, her dog Betty and cat, Louie.

Andre Colquhoun headshot

Spotlight: ANDRE COLQUHOUN

Andre Colquhoun is a Canadian actor, filmmaker, and musical artist. He can be seen in the Amazon Prime TV series The Expanse, Season 6 Episode 5 as the character Ceres Medic. The role is a minor principal role, but critical to the story, aiding character Josep, played by actor Samer Salem. In addition, Andre will be in the upcoming Star Trek: Strange New Worlds on Paramount+ as well as other major TV series.

Aside from acting, Andre has a deep love for filmmaking and music, with both being essential to his work as an artist. He recently created, directed, and starred in the 10-minute short film/music video Short Term. It features gorgeous cinematography, great direction, and grounded performance. The project is soulful, yet multifaceted, with multiple interpretations for the audience to examine and evaluate.

Andre’s ability to perform both in front of and behind the camera is a tremendous, rare talent he looks forward to embracing in future projects.

Andre Colquhoun in 360 magazine article.