why neuter indoor cats? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 33 Old 05-02-2007, 11:39 AM - Thread Starter
 
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anyone?

thanks.
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#2 of 33 Old 05-02-2007, 11:52 AM
 
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for males, to hopefully prevent spraying and marking
for females, to prevent heat cycles and kittens, many people have more than one cat of mixed genders.
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#3 of 33 Old 05-02-2007, 11:58 AM
 
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Intact cats, particularly males, but sometimes females too, will urine mark all over your house. Once urine marking becomes a habit, it can be impossible to stop, even after neutering. Females will have heat cycles (every few weeks in spring, sometimes throughout the year). This involves a bloody vaginal discharge that will get all over your house, and continuous wailing and rolling around on the floor. Both sexes will try hard to escape so they can breed, and there is a pretty good chance that they will be successful - sneak out the door, claw through the window screen, etc. Then you end up with kittens (and society in the end has to deal with excess cats at shelters).

Also neutering is good for the health of cats. They are less inclined to try to get outside to fight with other cats and pick up diseases, or get hurt. It significantly reduces or completely removes the risk of sex hormone-related cancers and other diseases of the reproductive tract.

That's all I can think of right now...

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#4 of 33 Old 05-02-2007, 12:03 PM
 
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An intact adult cat will get it's secondary sexual characteristics, which are generally not desirable in an indoor cat. Both sexes are more likely to spray, yowl, want outside at any cost, and show some aggressive tendencies if left intact.

Veterinarians are also pushing the idea that it reduces the chance of various cancers and infections of the sexual organs. I've never thought that that was a great argument though! (Let's cut off our breasts just in case we get cancer later on!)

From what I have seen the ideal time to spay or neuter is between 4 and 6 months. Any later and you run the risk of being 'too late'

We cross-posted QOTP! What she said!
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#5 of 33 Old 05-02-2007, 12:04 PM
 
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I thought of one more! Intact cats of course have a natural sex drive and if they don't have any outlet for that urge, they will feel sexually frustrated. They may or may not act out because of it (aggression, etc.) but it's not nice to put them in that situation.

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#6 of 33 Old 05-02-2007, 12:05 PM
 
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QOTP is right! Also, it is SO embarrassing to have your female cat lay down with her butt in the air, and obsessively rub her bottom on any hand that pets her. She will do this to you, your neighbor, your kids, your kids' friends, the Avon lady, and your pastor (if you have one) .

People think it's bad when they have a dog that humps legs? This is just as bad

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#7 of 33 Old 05-02-2007, 12:14 PM
 
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Also... Because cats are great escape artists and may end up coming home pregnant or impregnating every available female in the city...
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#8 of 33 Old 05-02-2007, 12:15 PM
 
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so they don't pee all over your house. So that they do not get breast cancer or uterine cancer, etc.
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#9 of 33 Old 05-02-2007, 01:14 PM
 
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I don't agree with using the cancer argument as a legit reason. I'm not cutting off my breasts because I "might" get cancer later and IMO that is not a legit excuse for pets either.

As for the butt in the air when being petted, every fixed cat I've never known has done that
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#10 of 33 Old 05-02-2007, 01:28 PM
 
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Males mark their territory all of the time once they reach sexual maturity. Females scream, roll around, and pee everywhere when they are in heat (and can stay in heat for MONTHS). However, they do not bleed like female dogs:

From here: http://www.cat-pregnancy-report.com/...-pregnant.html

Quote:
2. Does a queen bleed when she's in heat, like dogs do?

No. A female cat does not bleed when she's in heat. If she bleeds shortly after a heat cycle it could mean she has a miscarriage.
Of course, the biggest reason is so they don't reproduce needlessly when there are so many animals that need homes out there. My Step Daughters mom is the best example of what can happen if one does not take the time to responsibly alter their cats (this is long, but it to me is the perfect example):

Many years ago dH's Ex bought a female, Miracle, and bought a male, Shadow. Fortunately, she got him neutered right away. Unfortunately, she didn't bother spaying Miracle, and she got accidently lose outside and came back pregnant. She went on to have four: 3 females and one male. Ex's Mom took the male, DH (then later his dad) took one of the females. Since there were no intact males around, they didn't bother to spay the females. They were lucky when they didn't reproduce, and later they spayed those two and Miracle. Well, fast forward to just a couple of years ago. Ex took in two stray females Pandora and Sasha. She let Pandora come and go as she pleased for a while, and one day she came back pregnant. She went on to have 4: 2 males, 2 females (she later got back outside and never came back). We took one of the females and named her Isis (Shima was the other female). Brothers went on to mate with Sasha and Shima, producing between the two of them 8 kittens (1 died). DH and I took two of Shimas female kittens, Lily and Luna. They rehomed Miracles two remaining kittens and one other female kitten, and neutered the two brothers, but didn't bother doing the same for the last remaining male kitten they had. Well, DH and I had a feeling this situation was going to get even worse than it already was, but we had no idea how bad. We offered to pay for the male kitten to be neutered since they had four females capable of reproducing. They said no. A couple months later, Hailey tells us that Sable (the male kitten) started marking, and that the females were going into heat. We decided to take Shima out of there since they didn't want her, and we already had her sister and two daughters at home. We hoped we stopped her from getting pregnant, and Ex insisted it was impossible that she was pregnant. I took her into the vet, and sure enough she was, and later she ended up having four beautiful kittens. The three remaining females? Two had litters (total of 8, 2 of which died), with the third, Sasha, about to pop any day. So, if I did my math correctly, here are the totals, and they speak volumes:

The total that has been through that house in one form or another is 32.
Of those, only 4 were intentionally brought into the house.
That means that over 28 lives could of been prevented. Who knows what that total will be once Sasha has her kittens.

The moral of the story - unless you are a good breeder (one who does it for the love of the bred instead of money)reproducing quality animals to improve their bred, spay or neuter your pets!
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#11 of 33 Old 05-02-2007, 02:23 PM
 
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The main reason is because it is highly unlikely your cat will NEVER escape.

Our two spayed females are indoor only and we are VERY careful to keep them inside. However, on two occasions they snuck out, and on one of those occasions the cat who got out *immediately* ran over to a male waiting in the bushes and they had, er, relations--just like that, that is how fast it happened! He was waiting out there and she knew it, and devoted herself to sneaking out--she timed it perfectly, and was out the door before anyone could stop her.

In my observation even spayed females have something like a "heat" cycle once or twice a year, and when this hits mine she goes crazy, yowling and carrying on and a ton of males show up outside and set up camp by the door. I know she is spayed but I think it's partly psychological--her caterwauling seems to get the males to visit despite her lacking the necessary hormone signals.

I can only *imagine* how much worse this would be if she weren't spayed.
Her determination to get outside would probably make her totally miserable. And, she'd eventually succeed-don't underestimate how determined they can be.

Males will spray everything. Seriously, don't even go there.

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#12 of 33 Old 05-02-2007, 02:35 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I have one adult neutered male that I've had for years, and two little boys that I adopted this fall. Neither of them are neutered as of yet, but one of them just YEOWLS now. I haven't caught them spraying at all yet. All three are 100% indoor cats. We have a double door kindof thing... Like there's the door that goes outside and a stairway and then our technical front door. We don't open the door that goes outside unless the cats are shut into the apartment... Not just for the non neutered status, we live on a very busy street with fast trucks and whatnot.

Just wondering, thanks.
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#13 of 33 Old 05-02-2007, 03:18 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Arduinna View Post
I don't agree with using the cancer argument as a legit reason. I'm not cutting off my breasts because I "might" get cancer later and IMO that is not a legit excuse for pets either.
I dunno. Since breast cancer runs in my family I may do it when my children are done using them.

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#14 of 33 Old 05-02-2007, 03:24 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Arduinna View Post
I don't agree with using the cancer argument as a legit reason. I'm not cutting off my breasts because I "might" get cancer later and IMO that is not a legit excuse for pets either.

As for the butt in the air when being petted, every fixed cat I've never known has done that
Spaying before the first cycle virtually eliminates the risk of mammary cancer..just consider it a "fringe benefit" not the most important reason. The cats I've adopted were all older and all were spayed after having been bred. I "do" check them monthly by giving them tummy rubs.

It's all relative....people don't have to "cut off breasts" to reduce the risk of cancer...they can do other things...stay within their weight range, breastfeed, bear multiple children young, have a diet rich in antioxidants etc. to dramatically reduce their risk of breastcancer as well.

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#15 of 33 Old 05-02-2007, 03:50 PM
 
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Originally Posted by heartmama View Post
Males will spray everything. Seriously, don't even go there.
:

An ex boyfriend of mine insisted on not neutering his male kitten (we were broke up but still friends at the time he got it). He thought it was cruel to do that to any male animal, and wouldn't listen to my warnings. Can I tell you how much I LOVED it when I found out the cat literally marked EVERYTHING in my ex's room in one day ( )? The cat marked all over his mattress, his prized leather jacket, his piles of clothes, on the walls, on the carpet, and even on his expensive new stereo equipment. There was no getting that smell out.

Phatchristy, since you have shown cats before, maybe you know the answer to this question:
What do breeders do with their intact males? Do they keep them in a separate room where it is easy to clean up the urine? Or do they collect sperm and neuter them before they get carried away? I have always wondered what they did.
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Originally Posted by Arduinna View Post
As for the butt in the air when being petted, every fixed cat I've never known has done that
The butt in the air thing is very different from what the pp was talking about; when female cats are in heat, they often rub and grind against people. Quite obnoxious, and embarrasing. Not to mention the other signs of heat, during which they sometimes seem to be physically uncomfortable.
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#17 of 33 Old 05-02-2007, 04:32 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Zamber View Post
Phatchristy, since you have shown cats before, maybe you know the answer to this question:
What do breeders do with their intact males? Do they keep them in a separate room where it is easy to clean up the urine? Or do they collect sperm and neuter them before they get carried away? I have always wondered what they did.
I'm not she, but the cat breeders I've known have had a separate room or even a separate building outside for their males! Intact male cats...

I was looking at a British Shorthair, and the breeder said she wouldn't unload a male on me since they will often still spray if they were neutered as older cats.
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#18 of 33 Old 05-02-2007, 04:40 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Zamber View Post
:
Phatchristy, since you have shown cats before, maybe you know the answer to this question:
What do breeders do with their intact males? Do they keep them in a separate room where it is easy to clean up the urine? Or do they collect sperm and neuter them before they get carried away? I have always wondered what they did.
Keep in mind that I had persians, which by nature are more laid back and less likely to spray.

Most reputable breeders will only have 2-3 males tops. They would usually be kept either in their own room (think ceramic tile or linoleum), or in extra large enclosures with multiple levels (for cats different heights are very important). The boys have to stay confined away from the girls somehow.

Some breeders go so far as to install linoleum or plastic all around the bottom 3 feet or so up their walls to protect them from the urine.

I am not a fan of carpeting, nor cages. If I ever did any breeding in the future I'd rather have 4-5 cats total and have only a few litters a year.

I remember the first year I was out there was a local breeder who had a male that sprayed directly into an electrical outlet, started a fire and lost half her house (and a few of the cats too). So, they always would warn to make sure that all outlets had those child proof covers.

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#19 of 33 Old 05-02-2007, 04:47 PM
 
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I was looking at a British Shorthair, and the breeder said she wouldn't unload a male on me since they will often still spray if they were neutered as older cats.
With persians, they don't seem to necessarily have this habit as much. The breeder I worked with placed her retired studs all the time...but, she too waited usually 2-3 months after they were neutered so all the hormones were out of them.

Only the finest males are kept, so it is pretty easy to get a nicer show quality male even at a pet price. I met a woman two shows ago who had a blue tabby male persian I could have had after she had granded him. She had neutered him because she had too many excellent males, and wanted to grand him as an alter towards another award for him mom.

I am waiting to find out if I am still the home for a black pale persian...he's a young guy to be retired from a breeding program. If I do get him shortly after being neutered, he'll have to be confined to my bathroom probably for a month to get the hormones out. Though, for us, we've got all tile....the people who owned our home before us had 3 german shepards and 5 cats!

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#20 of 33 Old 05-02-2007, 07:06 PM
 
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Thank-you daekini and phatchristy for answering my question!
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Originally Posted by Arduinna View Post
I don't agree with using the cancer argument as a legit reason. I'm not cutting off my breasts because I "might" get cancer later and IMO that is not a legit excuse for pets either.
Well, it isn't really the same as cutting your breasts off.

Yes, it's preventative surgery, but remember these are pets. Unlike us they don't get hangups over their appearence or lack of sex drive (we don't see doggie viagra commercials ). Besides, it's less heartbreaking and invasive (not to mention less expensive) to deal with than getting chemo for your pet.

After seeing a number of our beloved female mice and rats die nasty painful deaths from uterine cancer, I have no qualms about getting any other animals spayed as long as it can be safely done. Reproductive cancer is a HORRIBLE way for a pet to die. A lot of them literally bleed to death. Some have a super high risk of getting it, too, unless you breed them regularly (ex- female rabbits) so spaying literally doubles their lifespans.


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#22 of 33 Old 05-02-2007, 11:39 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Arduinna View Post
I don't agree with using the cancer argument as a legit reason. I'm not cutting off my breasts because I "might" get cancer later and IMO that is not a legit excuse for pets either.
I agree that the cancer reason doesn't stand alone as a reason to spay/neuter, but in conjunction with other reasons, is a benefit to spay/neuter. BTW, spaying doesn't remove the cat's 'breasts', it removes the ovaries which are the source of hormones that cause mammary cancer. But pyometra (uterine infection) is a high risk with unspayed female cats and dogs that are allowed to continuously cycle without breeding. Pyometra can be fatal very quickly. Pets who have no intended purpose for breeding do not need their reproductive organs, so removing them is of little consequence. It's just not the same circumstance as preventative surgery on humans.

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One of our meezers (and you don't know truly juicy meowling heat till you've loved a Siamese queen ) developed uterine cancer at the age of nine (of all our cats, she was one we never bothered to spay, there wasn't a chance she was getting out & we'd never gotten around to it).

She did well in surgery, & is now sleek & jolly, but unless I was breeding them, I wouldn't do it (neglect to spay) again. She is overall a much happier cat.
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#24 of 33 Old 05-02-2007, 11:45 PM
 
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Yes, it's preventative surgery, but remember these are pets. Unlike us they don't get hangups over their appearence or lack of sex drive (we don't see doggie viagra commercials )
Wrong, they do SO feel bad about their appearance after being altered!!! That's what NEUTICLES are for!

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Males mark their territory all of the time once they reach sexual maturity. Females scream, roll around, and pee everywhere when they are in heat (and can stay in heat for MONTHS). However, they do not bleed like female dogs:

From here: http://www.cat-pregnancy-report.com/...-pregnant.html
That's interesting. When I was a child, our kitten had a heat cycle before we got her spayed. I was ten years old, so I remember it pretty well. She was definitely leaking from her vagina, and I think it was orange or dark yellow or some kind of color. It wasn't urine, it was dripping all the time. Maybe it wasn't blood, but it was gross and could have stained something.

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#26 of 33 Old 05-03-2007, 02:57 AM
 
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Wrong, they do SO feel bad about their appearance after being altered!!! That's what NEUTICLES are for!
: : : :

You win! I would of never dreamed they would make such a product.
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#27 of 33 Old 05-03-2007, 03:11 AM
 
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That's interesting. When I was a child, our kitten had a heat cycle before we got her spayed. I was ten years old, so I remember it pretty well. She was definitely leaking from her vagina, and I think it was orange or dark yellow or some kind of color. It wasn't urine, it was dripping all the time. Maybe it wasn't blood, but it was gross and could have stained something.
Huh, that is strange. Maybe something weird was going on with her first cycle. Let's see if I can find anything else...

Ok, from this source: http://cats.about.com/cs/pregnancybi...ating_game.htm

Quote:
Estrus is described as the period of receptivity to mating, and is linked with the production of estrodial (a type of estrogen) produced by ovarian follicles. It is not to be confused with minstruation in human females, and you will rarely, if ever, see any signs of blood, although occasional mucous discharge may be evident.
Ok, now I am a little confused. Some say they don't bled at all, but others imply they do but we rarely see it. Huh. I have never seen it in any of my females, but I have seen someone elses cat bled while having a miscarriage.
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#28 of 33 Old 05-03-2007, 09:57 AM
 
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Ok, now I am a little confused. Some say they don't bled at all, but others imply they do but we rarely see it. Huh. I have never seen it in any of my females, but I have seen someone elses cat bled while having a miscarriage.
I've never seen bleeding here. Though, if you look (when they're in heat) I remember that it does look "moist"...so they do have plenty of natural lubrication which is of course ideal for Mr. Tomcat to do his thing.

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#29 of 33 Old 05-03-2007, 10:00 AM
 
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That's interesting. When I was a child, our kitten had a heat cycle before we got her spayed. I was ten years old, so I remember it pretty well. She was definitely leaking from her vagina, and I think it was orange or dark yellow or some kind of color. It wasn't urine, it was dripping all the time. Maybe it wasn't blood, but it was gross and could have stained something.
Don't know if she was an indoor/outdoor cat or what.

There is definitely a possibility that she had an infection, pyometria.

Or, also the possibility that she was having a miscarriage they can sometimes "act" like they are in heat when they are having a miscarriage.

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#30 of 33 Old 05-03-2007, 11:47 AM
 
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No, she was indoor only, so she wasn't pregnant. Maybe she was just wierd. It probably wasn't blood; just had some color to her mucus discharge. ***Maybe she was licking herself too much to try to keep clean and made it sore? Maybe it was artificial colors in her cheap cat food?

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