Vets neuter cats for medical and social reasons. Whatever your motivation it is an essential part of your pet cat's health and wellbeing.
Neutering cats is not just an effective way to make sure there are no kitten-surprises every few months. It improves the cats health and wellbeing and for outside cats can have a positive impact, lessening the desire to hunt wildlife.
The operation involves a day in hospital, then a quiet couple of days afterwards. I recommend spaying females at 4 months old, as well-fed kittens can be pregnant by 6 months old!. There is no advantage to her having kittens, and in fact it greatly increases her chances of having breast cancer later in life.
Obviously though, the main reason to spay a female is to prevent the regular production of kittens – she will produce up to three litters a year if well-fed and left to her own devices!!
Surgical spaying/neutering is also an acceptable method of reducing your stress levels – intact females WILL be frantic to get out of the house (and it is SO HARD to find a good man in a hurry, so any boy will do!) and males will message their frustration by pungent pee-mail on doors and walls (spraying). So - well worth getting done for your own sanity - and perhaps Fluffy's as well!
The age of neutering has no effect on any anatomical features, and the younger the surgery is done, the quicker the kitten recovers. In the thousands of ‘juvenile neuterings’ I have conducted, and with many of them being followed their whole cat-life afterwards, the surgery was one of the minor events in a kitten’s life, especially if done while kittens are still members of a litter.
There is no difference for males between being castrated at 6 weeks or 6 months. If you want a ‘beefy boy’ you’ll need to wait till 9 – 12 months old, but if they start to spray, get them done next day!!
Both males and females can be neutered at as young as 6 weeks, but this is usually only done for population control by charities and some pedigree breeders.
The only risk is in having an anaesthetic so young, but the operation is very successful with no long term problems in either sex, and all the kittens who find homes via my clinic in Sydney, the Cat Palace are done at that age.
Some have grown into the biggest cats around – but that is due to their Premium diet - intensive food and attention!!
The following two videos demonstrate the process your vet will undergo to neuter cats. In it I walk you through the process so you can see what to expect. I also recommend you watch the video on this page as it is an examination prior to desexing these two beautiful kittens.
I am a great fan of the process of neutering cats (and dogs) not only for their benefit but ours as well. I have actively supported the Carribean Spay Neuter organisation and these photos bring a new perspective to their work. Please support them if you can.