Having your cat spayed or neutered is about more than just preventing unwanted kittens, it can also protect your feline friend from developing a variety of serious conditions and diseases. Today, our Baton Rouge vets discuss how old your kitten should be to be fixed and what the benefits are.
What is Spaying & Neutering in cats?
When discussing the surgeries to prevent reproduction in cats we typically refer to this surgery as our kitten being fixed or as cats being spayed or neutered. Neutering is the sterilization of male pets by removing the testes, and spaying is the sterilization of female pets by removing their reproductive organs.
When Should You Have Your Kitten Fixed?
There are many different opinions about when you should have your kitty spayed or neutered. Early or pediatric spay/neuter is generally done at approximately six to eight weeks of age, whereas standard spay and neuter procedures are most often conducted at about five to six months of age. Although, these procedures can be performed at any time during your cat's life as long as they are healthy. Therefore, it is never too late to have your cat spayed or neutered, even healthy cats in their teens can safely have this procedure done.
As kittens can start reproducing when they are as young as 4 to 6 months of age you might want to have your kitty 'fixed' before they reach puberty, or have their first heat cycle to prevent accidental pregnancy or certain health conditions.
It's always best to talk to your veterinarian to find out how old they feel your kitten should be to get fixed.
Having Your Female Kitten Fixed
It's estimated that in as little as seven years, one female cat and her offspring can produce approximately 420,000 kittens. Having your female cat fixed can make a big contribution to lowering the number of unwanted kittens living in your community.
Looking past the prevention of unwanted kittens, having your female kitten fixed has a handful of health benefits. For example, there's less risk of your cat developing malignant mammary tumors later in life if she is spayed before her first heat cycle.
Spaying can also help keep your cat from developing an infection of the uterus, and developing cancers of the reproductive organs.
Having your female kitten fixed might also help eliminate several unwanted female cat behaviors such as heat-induced howling, increased and overly intense affection, intense rubbing on objects, marking territory with urine, and the desire to wander.
Having Your Male Kitten Fixed
Some health benefits of having your male cat neutered include a reduced risk of your cat developing prostate or testicular cancer.
Male cats that are neutered often show less inclination to fight with other male cats, helping to reduce the risk of serious injuries caused by fighting.
Neutering your male cat could also lower your kitty's desire to roam in search of females. Less desire to roam helps to reduce the risk of injury caused by traffic accidents as they travel long distances.
Having your male cat fixed may also help to prevent him from spraying around your home and property to mark his territory, and will prevent your cat from fathering countless kittens.
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.