Neutering a male cat is called castration. A common misconception is that only female cats need to be neutered and the sole purpose is to avoid unwanted litters. There are many reasons why it is important to neuter your male cat.
Unneutered – ‘entire’ – male cats: are more likely to end up injured or catch diseases from fighting, with subsequent suffering and vet bills. Cat fights often lead to punctures or wounds that frequently develop into abscesses. Neutering significantly reduces fight incidences and abscess development in male cats.
- They routinely travel a large territory of many miles in search of unneutered females, risking road accidents and injury and meaning you miss the contact of having a pet cat or they become lost.
- They are at risk of tumours of the testicles. Prostate cancer in cats is difficult to treat and can be fatal.
- Entire male cats tend to be less efficient at grooming and can become matted and dirty. This can cause skin issues, parasitic skin disease and discomfort. Many owners report their males become much better self groomers once neutered and are generally cleaner.
Conversely, neutered male cats:
- are less likely to roam, reducing the risk of them suffering from car accidents
- are less likely to fight which reduces the risk of them getting injured or contracting serious diseases such as Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV) or Feline Leukaemia Virus (FeLV)
- are less likely to spray
- are unable to develop tumours of the testicles
- make better pets and are more likely to be ‘homebodies.
Getting your cat neutered before it can breed is an essential part of responsible cat ownership. Cats are very effective breeders. Without neutering, the stray/unwanted cat population can quickly get out of control. Obviously, male cats do not have kittens themselves but it only takes one male in an area to make lots of female cats pregnant. Overpopulation increases feline infectious disease, stress related disease, feline conflict and compromises cats’ welfare.
- Entire will spray smelly urine to mark territory and attract females. The most common behaviour problem in cats of all ages is indoor elimination at locations other that the litter box. A large number of these cases are cats that spray or mark walls and other vertical household objects. Adult male cats have an extremely strong urge to mark territory, both indoors and out. Neutering reduces or eliminates spraying in approximately 85% of male cats.
- He may experience a high level of stress akin to frustration if unable to find a mate. It is not uncommon for entire males to be aggressive with their owners, other pets in the house and children.
- Males will usually cease spraying withing a month of neutering and will become less likely to roam.
Another misconception is that neutered cats automatically become overweight after neutering. We can advise on appropriate diet and exercise requirements. We recommend periodic weight checks appointments with our nurses at all lifestages. A good time is when your parasite control is due. We have Bravecto for cats which gives 12 weeks protection. We can perform a weight and body condition score on your cat and apply your parasite treatment in the same visit. See our leaflets in clinic on how to accustom your cat to the carrier before visiting us in our cat only facilities.