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Neutering Cats

A female cat can get pregnant from around five months of age, so it is best to spay her before she gets to this age. Male kittens should likewise ideally be castrated before they are five months old.

Male Cats

Following puberty, around eight-nine months old, the male cat develops a number of less desirable behaviour changes.

He will become territorial and may start to mark his territory (which can be in the house) by spraying urine.  He will start to enlarge his territory by straying ever further from the house, particularly at night.  It is for this reason that many cats involved in road accidents are unneutered males.  By increasing his territory he will come into contact with other cats and so fight for dominance.  Inflicted fight wounds can result in severe infections and abscesses.

Since diseases such as feline leukaemia and feline AIDS, that cause illness and some cancers, are spread through bites it comes as no surprise to find that those cats most commonly affected are unneutered males.

If your male kitten is neutered he is less likely to wander which reduces the chances of him becoming lost etc. and making him more of a companion pet staying closer to home.

 

Female Cats

They can be neutered (spayed) from four months old.  Spaying your female kitten has several advantages.  The most obvious is the prevention of unwanted litters.

Once puberty is reached at approximately seven months old, the queen (female cat) will start calling for about a week in every three week cycle during most of the year until she is mated.

During calling she may display certain behaviours, which often consist of loud and persistent crying and frequent rubbing and rolling on the floor (as if in pain).

Such behaviour and her scent will attract potential tom cats from miles around who will sit for days in the hope of mating with your cat.

Once she is spayed, this will all stop.  Spaying also removes the risk of uterine infection and may reduce the future risk of breast cancer.

It is also known that if your male or female cat is neutered, they tend to become better natured as a pet and have fewer behavioural problems.

What does the operation involve?

Both males and females will come into the veterinary surgery as a day patient.  You will be able to drop them off early on the day of the operation and we ask that they are starved from the night before.

A male cat has both testes removed through a very small incision in the scrotum.  There will not be any stitches to remove. 

A female cat has a square patch of hair shaved from her side.  This has to be done to ensure the operation is as sterile as possible.  Her incision is relatively small and both the ovaries and uterus are removed.  She may have stitches in the skin.  Your vet will advise when he wishes to see your cat again post-operatively.

In certain pedigree cats, e.g. Siamese, Birmans, the hair that is shaved may grow back a slightly darker colour.  This darker patch may grow out with the following moult as hair is replaced, but if you are concerned by this, we can spay your female midline (under the tummy) so that the patch is not noticeable.


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