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Benefits of Spaying Your Cat

Just as there are reasons to spay bunnies and dogs, there are also benefits of spaying your cat. Furthermore, there are more opportune times to have your cat spayed than others. But first, let’s discuss what spaying is.

Spaying is the common word for ovariohysterectomy. And it’s a surgical procedure removing the ovaries and uterus, thereby sterilizing the female cat. Therefore, she won’t be able to produce any offspring. So, unless you are a breeder, it’s recommended to spay your cat for the reasons below.

Also, I’m dividing this into two parts, medical and behavioral benefits. First, we’ll look at the medical benefits to spaying cats. And then go over the behavior advantages.

Medical Benefits of Spaying Your Cat

a veterinarian holding an injection for a cat
Photo by Gustavo Fring on

Spaying your cat

  • removes the threat of ovarian and uterine cancers
  • before her first heat cycle, greatly reduces her risk of getting breast cancer

Mammary tumors are the most common tumors in cats. And ~85% of them are malignant. Also, cats who are not spayed have a higher incidence of mammary cancer.

The risk of UTIs won’t completely go away if your cat is spayed. Although the threat of them is reduced.

  • and it eliminates the chances of her getting a serious and fatal uterine infection called pyometra

Pyometra is a secondary infection of the cat’s uterus, occurring within weeks of her being in heat.

Behavioral Benefits to Spaying Your Cat

close up photo of yawning cat
Photo by Serena Koi on

If you spay your cat

  • she’ll no longer go into her heat cycle

No more yowling, meowing, or cat calling at all hours of the night. And no more of her trying to get her freak on with any of the other pets.

  • and she’ll no longer spray urine, if she did that during her heat cycles

Other Benefits of Spaying Your Cat

woman sitting on a bench outside feeding many cats
Photo by Canan YAu015eAR on
  • No extra mouths to feed or kittens to find homes for

Cats can mate and get pregnant quickly. And shelters are already overcrowded. Thus, by spaying your cat, you don’t have to worry about any of those issues.

Best Time to Spay Your Cat

As you can see, there are a lot of advantages to spaying your cat. But when is the best time to have it done? Most veterinarians agree that spaying your cat before their first heat cycle is the preferred time. And this is primarily to reduce any mammary cancer risks.

In a previous post I explained that cats can have their first heat cycle as young as 4 months old. Therefore, whether you have a cat that’s already had her first heat cycle, or you have a kitten, discuss spaying her with your veterinarian.

Weight Gain After Spaying

calico cat sitting on a dining table with food on it
Photo by cottonbro studio on

One reason pet parents cite for not wanting to spay their cats is the belief they will get fat. Well, those pet parents aren’t wrong. This co-relation has been studied: sterilized pets, including dogs, were 3 times as likely to be overweight than non-sterile pets.

The reason cats gain weight after being spayed is mainly due to hormonal imbalance. They lose certain hormones that not only control reproduction, but also affect metabolism and food intake. So they might roam less, have less physical activity, and eat more.

What You Can Do

cats playing on their wooden play house mount on wall
Photo by Arina Krasnikova on

After your cat is spayed,

  • talk to your veterinarian about how much food you should feed her, because her caloric intake needs to be adjusted
  • since she’ll feel hungrier, adjust her feeding schedule by giving her smaller, more frequent, meals throughout the day
  • don’t give her any table scraps
  • and play with your cat; wand toys, laser pens and fuzz balls are all great!

We have 2 cats that are spayed, and one that will be by October. Unfortunately none of our cats were spayed before their first heat cycle. But 2 were given to us as adults. And I tried to get Itty in before her subsequent heat cycles. However none of the offices I talked to would spay her unless she was done with her heat cycle completely. So this was the next best thing; waiting till it slowed down. (July didn’t work, because by the time her surgery would come up, each week she’d be back in heat.)

Meow Meow definitely is overweight. But I think it’s due to no activity. Cake is a good weight. And that’s because she’s still active. If you have cats, are they spayed? Did they gain weight after being spayed? Your comments are appreciated.

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I breed pure Black Ameraucana chickens and Easter Eggers that are Black Ameraucana mixed with either Cuckoo Maran or Barred Rock. And I donate eggs to people or organizations in need.

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