Desex

All responsible pet owners desex.  These routine medical procedures not only help control pet overpopulation, but they may also prevent medical and behavioral problems from developing, allowing your cat to lead a longer, healthier and happier life.

There are two sides to the question as to why you should desex your pet - prevent overpopulation and ensure a long and healthy life.

 

In relation to overpopulation these are some of the facts.

  • Every year over 60,000 cats and dogs are destroyed in council pounds and shelters.

  • Many of the animals euthanised are puppies and kittens.

  • Undesexed cats ensure generations can become feral and threaten wildlife. 

  • In a seven year period a single undesexed cat can produce 470,000 offspring. 

  • There are simply not enough homes to re-home all the animals born each year.  

In relation to health these are some of the facts.

  • Kittens can be desexed when they weigh 1kg - usually 10-12 weeks and is a quick safe procedure

  • Female cats can become pregnant from 4 months of age

  • Female cats desexed before the first heat cycle have an extremely low chance of developing Mammary Cancer - the third most common tumour found in female cats.

  • Desexed female cats are less likely to develop the fatal infection of the uterus Pyometra, and ovarian tumours.

  • Desexed male cats are less prone to malignant tumours of the testicles, prostate cancer and prostate enlargement.

  • Desexed cats are less likely to contract Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV) - also referred to as Feline AIDS. This is an incurable infectious disease which attacks cells in the cat’s immune system. As the virus replicates and spreads, it compromises the body’s ability to fight off secondary infections. Fighting and mating are the most common causes of the spread of the disease and undesexed cats are the main carriers of FIV. The protection offered by the vaccine is far from complete.

  • Desexed cats have no need to wander in search of a mate, thus reducing the chance of injury from cars and other animals.

  • Undesexed cats are more likely to sustain abscesses during fighting and mating.

  • Female cats who have multiple litters become exhausted and develop poor physical health which can lead to a depressed immune system.

  • On average desexed cats live longer.

  • Desexed males do not develop large cheeks due to the enlarged facial glands and the large shoulders arising from the testosterone level.

  • Desexed males will not produce the sticky black secretion containing pheromones that appears around the base of the tail and makes the fur greasy and matted. 

  • Desexed cats do not generally exhibit antisocial behaviour such as spraying, wandering, excessive vocalisation and aggression. A week after desexing the hormones responsible for these behaviours will have entirely left the body. However it is always better to desex before sexual maturity.

There are also a number of fallacies which should be dispelled. 

 

  • Cats have to be six months of age to be desexed.

  • It is good for a female cat to have a litter before being desexed. There is no scientific evidence this is correct.

  • My cat will gain weight after being desexed. If you feed your cat correctly they will not gain weight.

  • Desexing my cat will change their personality. It will change their personality on the positive side - no more yowling and spraying!

  • You only need to desex female cats. Male cat owners are also responsible to prevent unwanted breeding.

  • It is cruel to desex a cat as it is natural for them to reproduce.  It is natural for animals to reproduce - it is up to their owners to prevent the resulting problems associated with uncontrolled breeding.

  • Desexing my male cat is criminal because I am a male and understand how bad they would feel.  Insecurity issues should not be allowed to keep euthanasia levels at the second highest in the world. 

 

© 2013 PFL Inc