If you have just got a new kitten or adult cat, you may be wondering if you should get your new fur baby fixed. Our Stroudsburg vets explain why having your cat spayed or neutered is beneficial for your cat and your community.
Should you get your cat fixed?
The easy answer to this question is yes. You should have your cats spayed or neutered. Animal shelters throughout Stroudsburg are filled with homeless cats and kittens. According to one estimate from the ASPCA (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals), around 3.2 million cats enter US animal shelters annually. Not only will getting your new kitten fixed help to significantly reduce the number of homeless cats in your area, but it can also reduce your cat's risk of disease, and help to curb many undesirable cat behaviors.
When should you get your cat fixed?
It is best to spay and/or neuter your kittens when they are four months old, or before they reach sexual maturity. This provides the best protection against a variety of health risks. Adult cats, on the other hand, can be spayed or neutered. If you're unsure about when to have your cat fixed, simply ask your veterinarian; they can advise you on when to have your cat spayed or neutered.
How are spaying and neutering different?
There are differences when it comes to spaying and neutering your cat because they are spay and neutering are different procedures for different gendered cats.
Spay vs Neuter
Spaying is the process of sterilizing a female cat. Spaying your cat means that the vet surgically removes the uterus and ovaries, or sometimes just the ovaries, preventing your cat from having kittens.When male cats are fixed, they are neutered or castrated. This means that the vet surgically removes the cat's testicles, rendering your cat incapable of fathering kittens.
Benefits of a Spayed Cat
Here are the benefits of a spayed cat.
Controlling the Number of Unwanted Cats in Your Area
Your cat may be able to have kittens of her own before she is even six months old. Not only that, female cats can have up to four litters a year, and each litter can be made up of as many as 10 kittens! That means your cat could have as many as 40 kittens every year! That is a lot of unwanted cats.
Reduce Your Cat's Risk of Disease
When you have your kitten spayed before she has her first heart cycle can reduce your cat's risk of developing breast cancer later in life, and eliminate the possibility of your cat developing pyometra (a potentially fatal infection of the womb).
Protect Wildlife in Your Neighborhood
In the USA it is estimated that cats kill between 1.4 billion and 3.7 billion birds annually. By reducing the population of homeless cats, you are also helping to protect birds and other small animals.
Deter Unwanted Behaviors
Spaying your female cat can help keep male cats out of your yard. When female cats are not spayed, they attract the attention of male cats in the neighborhood. Male cats that have not been neutered can cause problems in your home and garden because they spray, fight, and howl.
Benefits of Neutered Cat
Here are the benefits of a neutered cat.
Reduced Numbers of Unwanted Kittens
One male cat who is not neutered can make many female cats pregnant at the same time. Having your male cat neutered can play a significant role in helping to reduce the number of homeless cats in your neighborhood.
Reduced the Risk of Many Common Health Issues
Neutering your cat may result in fewer injuries from cat fights and a lower risk of your cat contracting FIV (immunodeficiency virus) or FeLV (Feline leukemia virus). Neutering can also reduce your male cat's proclivity to roam, lowering his chances of being hit by a car.
Helps to Reduce the Incidence of Spraying
Typically, male cats who have not been neutered yet, will spray urine inside the home more often than neutered males, and often try to get outside more. Having your male kitten neutered while he's young can help to prevent spraying and other territorial and mating behaviors from starting.
Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.