Castrating your Cat

No food after midnight the previous evening, although water is allowed overnight. Please arrive between 8.30am & 9am.

Castration is the removal of the testicles. The operation is a one off procedure and is not reversible. Once your cat has been castrated he will never be able to father kittens. The normal cat has two testicles situated in the scrotum. It is not uncommon, however, for one or both testicles to fail to migrate down into the sac during early life. This is known as cryptorchidism.  Cats who are cryptorchid should not be bred from.

When should I castrate my cat?

We feel that the ideal time to castrate a cat is at four months old, although adult cats can be castrated at any time.

What are the advantages?

Reduction of smell and spraying behaviour. Most un- neutered cats by one year of age have the characteristic, pungent tom cat smell and spray strong smelling urine around the home and garden.

Reduction in fighting. All cats are inclined to squabble over territory but the entire tom is the main culprit. It is not uncommon for tom cats to need treatment for bite wounds on a frequent basis.

Reduction in vagrancy. Most entire cats have a tendency to wander and be a nuisance to neighbours, especially if there are entire female cats around. Road traffic injuries and deaths are all too common in entire cats with other things on their minds.

Castration lowers the risk of contracting Feline Leukaemia Virus, Immunodeficiency Virus and Infectious Peritonitis Virus. All of theses fatal diseases are believed to be spread, in part, by mating as well as through close contact e.g. fighting. Castrated cats are not mated and generally have less aggressive contact with other cats in the neighbourhood and therefore their risk of infection is decreased.

It has been estimated that the average life expectancy of a full tom is likely to be between three and four years, a full decade less than a neutered tom.

What are the disadvantages?

There is a higher proportion of overweight castrated cats compared to their entire counterparts. There is no doubt that a castrated cat requires less food for a given weight and activity level. We suggest reducing the amount fed by 15-20%. It is easier to increase the food for cats that lose a little weight than to diet those who have become overweight. We encourage weight checking and weigh your cat at each annual vaccination so that fine tuning of food intake can be made.

Energy requirements of neutered animals goes up by 30-35% within 24hours of their operation, making them want to eat more – no reason for this has been discovered yet, which is why we advise reducing their food straight away

With proper management, there is no reason for any weight gain as a result of castration.

There is an increase in signs of Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease (FLUTD) which is also called Feline Urological Syndrome (FUS). In this disease, crystals form within the urinary tract causing cystitis. In extreme cases the crystals can block the narrow urethra of the male cat causing an acute medical emergency. It is thought that neutering increases the risk in that the penis and urethra is narrower than that of an entire tom and the neutered cat tends to be less active and urinates less frequently allowing longer for the crystals to form. The vast majority of FLUTD cats are treated by modification of diet and a few medicines.

Booking your cat in for castration.

We perform routine surgery each day and given a little notice we can accommodate a specific day to suit your schedule.

We will ask you to withhold food from midnight. the night before and take up all fluids first thing in the morning. It is important that your cat has an empty stomach for his surgery.

We open at 8.30am and normally admit day patients up to 9am but again we can accommodate a later admittance, if it helps you.  We can admit cats the evening prior to the operation, with advance arrangement.

The consent form

We shall ask you, or an authorised adult, for written permission to perform the spay operation on your pet. We make time to guide you through the consent form so that we can explain any terms that you do not understand or are worried about.

We ask you to come in before the date of operation, so we can ensure you fully understand the consent form and give you time to ask any questions you may have.  You may request a financial estimate at this appointment, either printed or verbal.

The operation

All pets undergoing surgery at A+G Vets have an analgesic (painkiller) as part of their premedication, so that they are more comfortable and therefore less frightened when they wake up.

We allocate each pet an individual kennel, although siblings may share a kennel, if preferred. The kennels are warm and sound insulated and each has a lightweight polyester fleece and a heat pad for warmth and comfort. All animals are within sight of the nursing team, allowing prompt intervention, if required.

Pre-Anaesthetic Blood Sample

Some problems cannot be determined by physical examination alone and we have the facility to perform a pre anaesthetic blood screen to determine whether there is damage to the liver or kidney function. We have a modern blood analyser and results are available within 15 minutes, allowing any adjustments to be made in the anaesthetic protocol.   We would strongly recommend this for older patients or ones who have a pre-existing illness.

Fluid Therapy

As is routine in human hospitals, we can provide intravenous fluid support (a drip) for our patients. We believe this benefits all pets and allows them to make a stronger and speedier recovery.  Again we would strongly recommend this for older patients or ones with a pre-existing illness.

Care of surgical wounds

Wounds do not normally require any attention except for you preventing your pet licking excessively at the wound.  Cats that have been castrated do not have any sutures and do not require to return for post operative checks, unless you are worried.  We can provide a clear, plastic buster collar should your cat lick excessively at the wound.

Contacting us if you are worried.

When your cat is discharged you will receive instruction as to how to receive advice during the evening.  We have 24 hour out-of-hour emergency care, call 07718 424688.

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Emergencies Out of Hours Call 01324 815888