One of the most responsible things a cat owner can do is spay or neuter their cat. There are a select group of cat owners who strongly believe that preventing their cherished pet from having additional cute, fuzzy little kittens is both unfair and cruel. However, this is absolutely not true. In fact, it is estimated that shelters have to euthanize between 5 – 8 million animals each year. Having a cat spayed or neutered is virtually painless for your little furry companion. In addition, to preventing your cat from having kittens (or helping another cat have kittens), animals are much more calm and prone to be a much more loving pet after surgery. The urge to mark their territory and urinate in the house will be a thing of the past, as cats will be much easier to control after being spayed or neutered. Finally, cats that have undergone this procedure experience many health benefits. In order to be a true cat lover, an owner must be willing to make the appointment and ensure their kitty gets spayed or neutered.
It is a fact that euthanasia within a shelter is the number one killer of pets in this country. In order to aide in the control of the feline population, there are many clinics around the country that offer low-cost options to have your cat spayed or neutered. A great resource for information on low cost clinics in your area would be the humane society, or local pet shelter. In addition, the ASPCA maintains a website (aspca.org) which provides a database of low-cost to no-cost pet clinics. Just search by zip code under the “pet care” tab to find a clinic location convenient to you. There are often many options available. Controlling the pet population will prevent the unnecessary euthanasia of many unwanted pets each year, and prevent many cats from being forced to live on the streets.
The American Veterinary Medical Association, along with many other veterinary professionals recommended having your cat spayed or neutered right around 6 months of age. Younger cats have proven to have a much quicker recovery time then older cats that have this procedure. Kittens must be at least eight weeks old, and a minimum of two pounds. Owners do not need to wait for their cat to go into heat prior to having it spayed. In fact this procedure’s benefits are magnified if it is preformed before a cat reaches puberty (in regards to temperament). Also, this procedure has been shown to be much easier on a cat if it is done prior to their first heat.
If you have ever been around a cat in heat, you will definitely enjoy the benefits of having it spayed prior. When a female cat is in heat it will yowl…. Yes, yowl. It is continuous, and it is loud. They will do anything to have access to the outside, and it greatly affects their behavior. Finally, any unneutered male cat within the neighborhood will be flocking to your home and spraying whatever they can get their cat spray on. It will be an awful period of time with your cat wailing, and your home, and anything else the male cats can get to, reeking like cat spray. This experience can make even the most devoted cat owner crazy. Once a male cat is neutered they are far less likely to spray around the home. This is because the hormonal urge to spray is greatly reduced after the surgery. The first and most effective method of preventing a cat from marking its territory or spraying is having him neutered.
Other benefits from cats receive from this operation include greatly reduced chances of feline cancer, testicular for male cats as well as breast and ovarian for females. Cats have been shown to wander less, and become much calmer members of the household from being spayed or neutered. In conclusion, having this procedure performed on you feline counterpart will create a more harmonious environment in the home, help control the pet population, and help your pet lead a happier, healthier, and longer life.
- License: Creative Commons image source
Pete Maida writes on behalf of Martindale Animals Clinic, a company which have a spay and neuter clinic for the animals.
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