Spaying is the surgical removal of the ovaries and the uterus. This procedure is performed under a general anaesthetic, with your cat being admitted in the morning and collected later the same day.
We recommend female cats are spayed at 5-6 months of age. If your cat has recently had kittens she can be spayed as soon as the kittens are weaned.
Castration is the surgical removal of the testicles. This procedure is performed under a general anaesthetic, with your cat being admitted in the morning and collected later the same day.
We recommend castrating cats at 5 months of age.
Why are female cats spayed?
The primary reason for spaying is to prevent unwanted kittens from being produced. Other benefits include:
- Female cats, once sexually mature, are triggered to come into season, or call (i.e. be receptive to a male cat), by the photoperiod or length of daylight. This period of calling usually lasts from March to September for outdoor cats, but indoor cats exposed to artificial electric light can call all year round!
- Strange vocalisation which is often mistaken for the cat being in pain. This can go on through the night and is very disturbing for the owner.
- The desire to roam in order to find a mate increases the risk of fighting or road traffic accidents.
Unless you want to use a female for breeding purposes there are few advantages and many disadvantages to keeping an unneutered female cat.
Neutered cats have fewer medical problems, live longer on average, don’t add to the pet overpopulation problem and make more loving and rewarding pets.
What are the main reasons for castrating cats?
The primary reason for castration is to prevent unwanted kittens from being produced. Other benefits include:
Male cats roam, often quite far from home, seeking out females in heat. This roaming increases the dangers of road accidents, leads to fighting and consequent cat bite abscesses and the transfer of fatal infectious diseases. Neutered males are statistically proven to have a lower incidence of feline aids and leukaemia.
A male cat marks out his territory by spraying urine. This scent marking is done by the cat backing up to an object, raising his tail and squirting urine onto the vertical surface of the object. The urine of a male cat has a very strong and offensive odour. Spraying is often done in the house, particularly if there is more than one cat in the household. Castrated cats will not usually mark territory and certainly do not have foul smelling urine.
Relationship to owners
A male cat likes to have a home and a kind owner, but will desert all these comforts for a female or if another male enters his territory. In fact the intact male usually only comes home to eat and sleep! Castrated cats often become more docile, affectionate and playful as the owner becomes the primary focus of their lives.
Unless you want to use a male cat for breeding purposes there are few advantages and a lot of disadvantages to keeping an entire male cat.
A castrated cat has fewer medical problems, eats less, lives much longer on average and does not add to the pet over-population problem and makes a more loving and rewarding pet.