Following on from the blog post on World Spay Day 2016 and the importance of neutering, I thought I would share my own experience as a cat owner and the spaying process.
Having Evie spayed was the easiest and best thing I could have done for her. I can let her run around and play outside, safe in the knowledge that she won’t be able to bring home any litters of kittens!
We dropped her off at our local vets at 9am, and had her back home by about 3.30pm the same day. The cost was roughly £60, we paid into a pet plan in monthly installments to help with the cost, but this will vary depending on your vets practice.
Evie is used to being pampered, but when she arrived home after getting spayed, she really knew how to play us! Although she was a little cold and shivery, the vet said this would be normal and to keep her warm. The image below shows Evie in her favourite place, her radiator bed and we placed a light blanket on her for extra warmth.
She was sleepy as was to be expected and the next morning she was back to her bouncy self. You can see from the photo on the right the small circle of shaved fur where her wound was, which was neat and clean, this grew back pretty quickly.
The vet advised us to reduce the amount of food we give her, as her body has less work to do. Evie is prone to weight-gain, so we changed her diet to a dry food which specialised in neutered kittens.
I hope by sharing how simple the spaying process can be, this helps put other cat owners mind at ease.
All views expressed are those of my own and not necessarily that of Cats Protection Stranraer & District.
World Spay Day 23rd February 2016
In honour of World Spay Day this year, we’ve dedicated this blog post to some information on the importance of spaying and neutering your feline friend.
Our recommendation is that cats are neutered at four months of age to protect from any unwanted litters of kittens. Many cat owners are unaware that kittens are able to have kittens themselves, from less than six months of age!
Cats Protection Stranraer & District offer free neutering for people receiving benefits, pensioners, students and those on a low income. In November 2015 we ran a free neutering promotion for the second year running in Wigtownshire, totaling 265 cats neutered free of charge. This breaks down into:
- 217 belonging to an owner
- 42 farm/feral or stray cats
- 6 cats brought into our care before re-homing
The cost for this to our small branch was £7,200, raised from fundraising and a small grant from the National Cat Centre. We are here to help those who really can’t afford the cost of getting your cat neutered, but feel they still want a furry friend to call their own. (We ask that those who can afford this one off bill, to allow us to use our precious funds for those who can’t and for the cats in our care waiting for new homes).
For the facts on neutering, including why it is still important to get your male cat neutered, visit our Essential Guide: Neutering – Family Planning for Felines.
If you would like help or advice about spaying or neutering your cat, please get in touch. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0345 371 2759.
It might not be the first thing on your mind when bringing home a fluffy new kitten to love and care for, but vaccination is vital to keeping your pet protected.
Kittens can be vaccinated from 9 weeks of age; two vaccines are usually needed – three to four weeks apart – to ensure kittens are not left susceptible to infection. This is alongside an annual booster to help maintain their immunity against certain diseases. Carrying out this simple trip to your local vet will help ensure your bouncy new kitten gets the best chance of maturing into a healthy cat.
Vaccines are not available for all infectious diseases, but luckily there are a number of vaccines available to help protect your cat from the life-threatening diseases that are commonly found in felines:
- Feline parvovirus (FPV) – FPV is also known as feline panleukopenia virus and feline infectious enteritis – it causes severe disease in cats and especially kittens and is frequently fatal
- Feline herpes virus (FHV) – FHV is one of the causes of cat flu and is a very common virus. It can cause serious and very unpleasant ulcers on the face, ears, neck and more worryingly the eyes
- Feline calicivirus (FCV) – FCV is another common cause of cat flu. It is also one of the main culprits for stomatitis (painful inflammation of the mouth and gums) and chronic gingivitis in cats. This can become so bad that only steroid treatment can keep it under control. Leaving it untreated will cause the cat severe pain and prevent eating, grooming and drinking with ease. An annual booster will help the vet to spot this before it has any damaging effects
- Feline leukaemia virus (FeLV) – FeLV is a virus that causes a fatal disease – it affects the immune system and can also cause vulnerability to other infections, anaemia or tumours
- Chlamydophila felis – Chlamydophila felis is a bacterium that often causes painful conjunctivitis with discharge and redness of the eyes, but it can also be a cause of cat flu
- Bordetella bronchiseptica – Bordetella bronchiseptica is a bacterium that causes flu-like signs such as sneezing, runny nose and eyes, high temperature and a cough
- Rabies – Rabies is a lethal virus which is not currently a problem in the UK – cats travelling abroad under the Pet Travel Scheme must have vaccinations against rabies
Sadly, most cats coming into our care are suffering from diseases that could have been prevented with simple routine vaccinations. One of these cats is Blue, who alongside his brother Inky is one of our longest residents at the moment. Unfortunately for Blue, he has been suffering from the Feline Herpes Virus (FHV).
Blue arrived into our care with a very sore eye, one of the causes of FHV. This can cause extensive ulcers that need long-term treatment. Thankfully Blue is responding to treatment from his fosterer. However eye-drops will become a daily need for him, something that could have been prevented with vaccination when he was younger.
Both Blue and Inky are very placid cats and easy to handle, making the application of his eye drops very easy for him.
Getting your kitten vaccinated and keeping up to date with the annual boosters would be our minimum wish list for your cat, and we think your cat deserves this consideration – we hope you do too!
Visit our veterinary guide on infectious disease and vaccination here for more information.
If you think you could give Blue & Inky a loving home, visit our website for more information.