Littering cats is part of the routine of many veterinary centers and has also become common practice for many caregivers, attracted by the advantages of an intervention with important benefits. In this article by Pet Kittens, we will explain in detail what this surgery consists of, what care the operated cats will need, what consequences we can expect, as well as the advantages of this procedure.
Read on to find out about cat neutering and when to get male and female kittens neutered or spayed, the price of the procedure and much more. We answer the most frequently asked questions so that you can go to the veterinary center with as much information as possible.
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Male and Female Kittens Castration
Having clarified that spaying and neutering cats are different surgical processes, let’s see what this second operation is like.
Castration in male cats consists of making a very small incision through which the testicles are removed. The procedure in females is somewhat more complex since the incision must open several layers to enter the abdominal cavity and extract the uterus and ovaries.
In some cases, especially in street cats that are going to be released as soon as they wake up from the intervention, the approach is lateral and only the ovaries can be removed. These incisions will be smaller and, due to their location, fewer postoperative complications will occur.
Anyway, the trend in veterinary practice is to make smaller and smaller incisions and suture only under the skin. These measures are aimed at achieving a quick recovery and minimizing complications.
Best Age to Neuter Male and Female Kittens
Surgery is recommended before the first heat. This involves operating around 5-6 months in both males and females, although, depending on the time of year, there may be variations.
The cats are seasonal polyester, which means that, in the season of greatest sunlight, they will be in heat over and over again. For this reason, it is important to take into account both seasonality and the cat’s age.
In any case, our trusted vet will tell us what is the best age to castrate a cat, so if we have doubts about when to carry out the castration of a cat, for example, the most appropriate thing is to consult directly with this professional.
This intervention is not only performed to avoid unwanted litters. Castrating before the first heat practically eliminates the possibility that the cat suffers from tumors in the breasts, a very frequent cancer in them and with a high degree of malignancy.
Operating cats early prevents them from beginning urine marking by detecting a female cat in heat. A cat that has already developed these behaviors can maintain them once it is neutered.
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Neutering a Male Kitten
Neutering cats is a very quick and easy procedure. Most of the newly operated ones continue with their routine as soon as they get home. The care after castrating a cat is minimal and we only have to worry about observing the incision to verify that it is closing correctly.
Since cats are self-grooming, it is a good idea to prevent them from licking the wound at first, as they could be injured by the scraped effect of their tongues. In any case, since the incision is minimal and therefore closes quickly, it is not usually even necessary to use an Elizabethan collar.
Recovery of Kittens after Neutering
Castration of a kitten, being more complex than that of a male, will require more attention during the postoperative period, although recovery is also rapid.
Normally, as soon as the kitten wakes up from the anesthesia we will be able to take her home. It is common for the vet to administer medication to avoid infections and pain and that we have to continue the treatment at home for a few days.
On the other hand, despite the fact that the use of an Elizabethan collar is not usually common in males, in the case of females it is frequent to have to use it, at least during the first days or while we cannot monitor it.
In addition, it is very important that we check that the wound healing of the castrated cat is correct. Any inflammation, redness, suppuration or bad smell is the reason for urgent veterinary consultation, the same as if we notice that the cat does not eat, has a fever or is lethargic.
Benefits of Spaying a Cat
Neutering cats prevents them from reproducing as the hormones responsible for triggering heat are removed. Thus, neither males nor females are going to show symptoms of heat, which in cats includes marking with very strong-smelling urine, leaks, which can end in falls or falls, behavior changes, deafening meows or fights.
In cat fights incurable diseases such as feline immunodeficiency and leukemia can be transmitted, something that we must bear in mind when making this decision.
In addition, since there are pathological processes linked to these hormones, by suppressing them, we will also avoid them. For example, kittens castrated at an early age are practically protected from breast tumors. Pyometers, which are very serious uterine infections, benign breast hyperplasia, or psychological pregnancies, are also avoided.
In male kittens, the development of testicular pathologies is prevented. Therefore, the benefits of neutering a cat are multiple. Thus, in addition to combating abandonment, we allow our cats to enjoy a healthier life.
Side Effects of Neutering a Cat
Now, if what we are interested in is knowing if there are negative consequences of castration in cats, the truth is that they are minimal.
As for disadvantages, we can cite the risk of being overweight since there is a change in the energy requirements of the animal.
Therefore, it is important that we monitor feeding after surgery and that we keep the cat active by offering it games and an enriched environment.
How Much Does it Cost to Neuter a Cat
The price of neutering kittens will vary depending on whether it is a male or a female since the complexity of the surgery is different. But, in addition, the amount can be very different depending on the town in which we reside.
The reference prices for clinicians are set by each Veterinary College, hence the appearance of variations between places and even clinics in the same city, since it is a recommendation that each veterinarian will adapt according to their criteria.
In addition, before operating, the animal should be checked, ideally by performing a blood test and an electrocardiogram. These tests are sometimes included in the price but other times they are an additional expense to add to the total amount.
As a reference, we can count that the price of castrating a cat will be around 100-200 euros, while the neuter of the cat, cheaper, will be around 50-60.
Where to Neuter Cats For Free?
Sometimes, the municipalities or the veterinary clinics themselves carry out sterilization campaigns in which castrations are carried out free of charge or at reduced prices. They are usually aimed at the street or homeless cats but sometimes also include home cats.
Another option, if we want a free neutered cat, is to go to adopt it to an association, protector or kennel, which usually delivers them already operated or, if they are still very small, they take care of doing it later.
Of course, in these adoptions, it is common to have to pay for the microchip and health expenses since the animals are usually delivered with their health card daily.
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Myths About Cat Castration
In previous sections, we have seen the effects that castration produces in cats. Exclusively they are those, reason why the rest of beliefs on the matter lack scientific base.
Claims like castrating a cat change its character render it useless to hunt, frustrate it, make it lose instincts, or is insane that they don’t have at least one litter are just baseless myths.
Thus, it is not necessary for a cat or cat to breed at least once to be happy or stay healthy, in fact, we have already proven the advantages of not having offspring.