Deciding Whether to Spay
This is routine surgery and while not a small operation, it is a relatively straight forward procedure. There are many advantages of spaying, mainly:
- Preventing pregnancy and oestrus behaviour (cat howling and staying out)
- Preventing infection of the uterus (pyometra)
- Preventing ovarian cancer
- Reducing the likelihood of mammary (breast) cancer
The above diseases can all be life-threatening. The possible disadvantages are those associated with undergoing major surgery and a general anaesthetic. Fortunately, the benefits of this surgery far outweigh the risks involved in anaesthesia and surgery, which are very small indeed.
Breeding can be a hugely rewarding experience, but requires knowledge and commitment before going ahead. There can be significant expense and work involved. At Marshalswick Veterinary Surgery we fully recommend spaying when there has been a decision not to breed, for the important health benefits to the cat and to prevent unwanted pregnancies which will almost certainly happen if she goes out.
Deciding When to Spay
The best time to spay is usually around 6 months although it can be done earlier if necessary. An example of this is if you also have a male kitten in the house, but we ideally wait till the females are at least 2kg in weight. We do not recommend cats go out unsupervised till they have been spayed as it is very easy for them to become pregnant. Once a cat starts having a season it will cycle in and out of them approximately every 3 weeks which can mean a lot of noisy and unsettled behaviour.
The procedure only takes around 20 minutes and your cat will be home with you the same night. Usually they will have a buster collar and pain relief. We recommend they are rested for the next few days. The stitches are either removed 10 days later or dissolve themselves at which point your cat is considered completely healed.