Neutering is an operation to remove the ovaries and womb of a female cat (spaying) or the testicles of a male cat (castration).
After the operation the female cannot have kittens and the male cannot father kittens.
Neutering stops unwanted litters of kittens from being born. There are also good health reasons for the operation. Diseases such as FIV (cat AIDS) and feline leukaemia virus can be spread by intercourse. Unspayed female cats will have many litters in their life time which is a major physical drain on them. Uncastrated male cats go looking for female cats and to extend their territory. This means that they are always getting into fights. The life expectancy of an entire Tom cat is about 11 compared to a neutered male which we would expect to live to 15 or 16.
We recommend the best time for the operation is about six months old. We will arrange free consultation with one of the vets a few days before the surgery. The vet will check your cat thoroughly to make sure he or she is fit for an anaesthetic. Please feel free to use this visit to ask about any aspect of the procedure you don’t understand.
On the day of the operation your cat is settled into a cage with a comfortable blanket and provided with a litter tray. A pre-med injection which also contains a very strong painkiller is given to relax him or her. Once the pre-med has taken effect the anaesthetic is given into the vein in the front leg. We may need to shave some hair from the leg to do this.
The operation is carried out on our heated operating table. During the procedure a nurse constantly monitors your cat. Under veterinary supervision, the nurse measures the breathing, heart, colour and reflexes and keeps a written record. We also use a pulse oximeter which measures your cat’s pulse and blood oxygen levels. The vet also monitors your cat throughout the procedure.
Your cat will get 2 types of pain killer. The first is a shorter acting but very strong analgaesic which is given in the pre-med, on recovery and as needed in the next few hours. A longer acting (24 hour) pain killer is also given before the operation.
When you collect your female cat you will notice a shaved area on her side. The sutures are all dissolving and internal. Male cats do not have any stitches. We will give you full instructions about caring for your cat when you come to collect him or her. We would not anticipate any problems for your cat during or following the procedure. Most cats are back to normal the day after the operation.
You may like to consider having a microchip placed at the time of the operation. We believe microchipping is the best method to identify pets.
This is because it is permanent, invisible and tamperproof. The tiny microchip is about the size of a grain of rice. It is quickly and simply implanted under the skin at the back of the neck in a procedure similar to a vaccination. The ideal time for young cats to be microchipped is while under anaesthetic for neutering.
If your cat goes missing and is found by a vet or welfare organisation he or she will be scanned for a microchip on arrival. When the number shows up on the scanner it will be matched up with your name and address from the database and you can be quickly re-united.