Everybody loves kittens, they’re cute, they’re cuddly, fluffy and amazing, but fact is, there are way too many kittens and cats that don’t have forever homes. Why? A big part of it is that some people don’t fix their cat. They might forget, decide its too much money, don’t see the use of it or they want kittens, and then the kittens keep on coming. Average female cats can have up to 3 litters a year, and since the average size of a litter is 4-6 kittens, if you don’t spay your cat, you could have up to 18 kittens each year. I know this doesn’t sound like a crazy number, but you have to realise that your cat is most certainly not the only one that hasn’t been spayed. This is the sole reasons kitten season exists.
Now, kittens have a larger chance of being adopted than adult cats. When people are thinking about getting a cat, they’ll often be attracted to kittens over adults. The shelters are already overcrowded, and they need all hands on deck for kitten season. Shelters actually make sure the kittens and cats they put up for adoption are already spayed or neutered, to prevent and counteract overpopulation. So why don’t we all try to prevent and counteract overpopulation?
De-sexing your cat is better for the cat most of the time; they won’t suffer form constant hormonal fluctuations, they are more likely to stay close to home, less aggressive behaviour and it actually helps your cat live a longer, healthier life. However, if you plan using your cat for breeding purposes (which again, I don’t advise, unless its a purebred) you should not spay or neuter your cat, as it makes them infertile.
Spaying is for female cats, its a very small procedure in which the cat’s uterus is removed through a small incision in the abdomen. It’s not an invasive operation at all, and only has small risks involved.
Neutering is for male cats, again, it’s a very small procedure, a small incision made in the scrotum, out of which the testicles will be removed directly. This successfully sterilises the cat.
Spaying or neutering can prevent mammary gland tumors, cervical cancers, testicular cancers and lessens the risk of prostate disease. I would most definitely recommend spaying/neutering your cats, to decrease the amount of kittens during kitten season, it’ll help your cat live a longer, healthier life, and it’ll lessen or completely absolve problematic behaviour such as spraying or loud yowling when the cat is in heat, or trying to protect its territory.
The only con there is to de-sexing your cat is that they might gain weight, because they’re not actively and constantly searching for a partner anymore. As long as you keep your cat active during playtime, this shouldn’t be an issue, but I’ll be posting some tips on how to keep your cat active in a few months. Fun fact, cats should have at least 30 minutes of active play (really get them running) each day regardless of having been desexed or not.
I’ve been hearing a lot about early sterilisation of cats, but I’m honestly not too sure what to think about it. All I know, is that you should really get your cat de-sexed, but not exactly at what age; about 5-6 months is the usual thing around here, but early procedures take place after the kitten has reached a certain weight, and is about 8 weeks old.
It’s a common practice in America, but not in Europe, and I can find as many cons as pros for the early procedures, so I’m still on the fence about this one. I might write a post about it when I’ve figured out how I feel about it, and when I know all the facts!
I don’t want to pressure anyone into de-sexing their cat, but I would really love for you to consider it, wether your cat’s an outside cat or not. The costs really aren’t that high in my opinion, and since you might be avoiding costs in the long run, it seems like the better option to me. Plus, you’re saving a lot of cats from never experiencing loving, forever homes!
I’m planning to do some more blog posts like this, just writing about my feelings on certain topics. If you have any suggestions, I’d love to hear them! (: