It is estimated that 5-8 million animals are euthanized in shelters across the country every year. An excellent way to prevent this number from growing, is to decrease the amount of unwanted kittens born in the first place. If you are considering, or are on the fence about getting your cat spayed/neutered, here are some frequently asked questions and the answers to help you better come to a decision:
Q: Why should I have my cat spayed/neutered?
A: Shelter euthanasia is the number one killer of companion animals. Spaying and neutering is the only way to reduce or eliminate that. It’s also better for your pet’s health. And having a cat that’s spayed or neutered will make your life easier.
Q: Shouldn’t I let my cat have a litter before I spay her?
A: Not necessarily. It greatly reduces the risk of certain cancers if you have her spayed before the first heat, and therefore before she is able to have a litter.
Most places, unfortunately, are overrun with kittens. There are millions of cats and kittens that need homes and millions more are abandoned. There simply aren’t enough homes for all the cats that are born every kitten season.
Q: Is is OK to spay my cat when she’s just a kitten?
A: Yes, as long as she’s at least eight weeks of age and weighs at least two pounds. Pediatric spaying and neutering is widely accepted. Those ideas about needing to wait are antiquated and the evidence is to the contrary.
Q: Do cats get fat once you spay or neuter them?
A: A healthy weight is mainly related to portion control and exercise. It is recommended cats be kept indoors, so you should have environmental enrichment to keep a cat happy and healthy.
Q: Will spaying or neutering my cat prevent future illnesses?
A: You’ll have a lower incidence of mammary tumors. For male cats, you eliminate testicular diseases, and for females, the risk of uterine diseases. Generally, spayed and neutered pets live longer, happier lives!