Having your cat neutered or spayed is an important and wise decision
Having your cat neutered or spayed is a very wise choice as animal rescue shelters are overburdened by litters of unwanted kittens.
By sterilizing your cat, you can prevent problems such as spraying in the house and injuries to your cat from fighting over territory.
Cats can produce kittens from the age of six months so it's important to have your cat neutered before it can reach sexual maturity.
As with any surgery and anesthesia, there are risks involved, but your vet does this kind of procedure on a regular basis, so you do not have anything to be concerned about.
Your vet might want to keep your cat overnight, but this should not be anything to be worried about. By staying overnight, your cat can rest and the vet can make sure that he/she is eating and drinking water normally before sending him/her home.
Some vets require blood tests before doing any kind of surgery. This is done to ensure that there are no liver or kidney problems as this might be a serious health risk where anesthesia is concerned.
Not only does sterilizing stop unwanted litters, but having your cat neutered or spayed decreases their risk of developing either testicular or ovarian cancer. Queens are at risk of developing a condition called Pyometra, which is a life threatening infection of the uterus.
If you are worried that you will not be able to afford the procedure, you have to take into consideration that it will be a once off cost. Speak to your vet - they often have days were they sterilize animals at a reduced cost. The devastating effect of not neutering or spaying an animal far outweighs the benefits of having the procedure done.
A queen is a female that has not been spayed. A female cat that has been sterilized has had both ovaries and the uterus removed. She is not able to produce offspring and will also not come into heat.
During the surgery, your cat will be anesthetized so that she will not feel any pain. The veterinary nurse who assists the vet will monitor her heart rate and breathing. After making a small incision in the belly, the vet will remove the ovaries and the uterus. After the removal, the vet will make sure that all the blood vessels are tied off to prevent bleeding and will begin to suture the incision closed.
If your cat does not have dissolvable stitches, you will be required to take your cat back to the vet to have the stitches removed after 10-12 days.
Cats have a way of recovering from surgery far quicker than humans. You need to however make sure that your children do not roughly grab your cat or try to pick her up. Restrict play that involves jumping and stretching for 2-3 days to prevent bleeding. Keep an eye on your cat that she does not lick and pull at her stitches, tearing them out.
A tom cat is a male cat that has not been neutered. A male cat that has been sterilized has had both testicles removed. He is not able to produce offspring and roaming and fighting will be eliminated.
To prevent a male cat from spraying, it is important to have him neutered at the age of 6 months.
Neutering is a far simpler and quicker procedure than spaying. The vet removes the testicles through a small incision in each scrotal sac under general anesthesia.
As with a female cat, make sure that your cat is not roughly picked up or handled and restrict play for 2-3 days. There are no external stitches that need to be removed.
Myths and misconceptions about sterilizing your cat
A female cat should first have a litter of kittens
This is probably one of the oldest myths. Spaying your female cat before her first heat cycle can prevent uterine diseases and mammary tumors.
My cat will become fat
Sterilizing your cat does not make him/her fat - too much food and no exercise makes a cat fat.
An indoor cat does not need to be sterilized
An unaltered indoor cat will have the same instincts and urges that an outdoor cat will have and the urge to mate will be just as strong.
Sterilizing my cat will change his/her personality
What determines your cat's personality and behavior is how you handle and treat your cat.