By Dr. Irfan Ahmed*
We cat parents initially had this notion of whether it is right thing to spay or neuter our cats. We always debated whether to keep the cat intact as nature intended or get them sterilized. As we are not quite sure to spay or neuter our cat, we are also unaware of the positive and negative aspects of spaying and neutering when making a decision.
The Positive Side of Spaying
Spaying- Avoids the risk of pregnancy.
By allowing your cat to have litters over population becomes a serous problem. Finding good cat parents is not as easy as you think. If you choose to keep the kittens, you will have the additional cost of cat upkeep, as in cost of food, care, and other monetary aspects. The health of the mother cat can be a matter of concern. Some new mothers can have serious complications delivering kittens and can even develop health problems during nursing. All these potential problems can be avoided by spaying your cat.
Cat gets calmer
When a cat gets spayed it gets quiet as the drive to find a mate is cut off. The spayed cat no longer attracts males and their annoying advances and serenades. Spayed cats are also easier to get along with. They tend to be more gentle and affectionate.
Cat is healthier
A last and most important aspect of spaying a cat is that spayed cats tend to have fewer health problems. Spaying is the removal of the ovaries and uterus. Without these organs, ovarian cysts, uterine infections and cancer of the reproductive tract are no longer a concern.
The Negative Side of Spaying
Spaying will result in the sterilization of your cat, and she will no longer have the ability to become pregnant. If you wish to breed your cat, spaying should not be done.
Spaying may cause weight gain.
Some cats may gain weight after being spayed. Unspayed cats typically have a strong mating desire and can expend a lot of energy seeking a mate and reproducing. Without this energy burden, your cat may eat the same amount but not burn off as many calories.
The Positive Side of Neutering
Neutering removes the risk of pregnancy.
Pet overpopulation is a serious issue and by allowing your cat to breed, you are adding to the problem. Although you may not own the female cat, and you are not burdened with finding homes for those new kittens, someone else is. Even if you accept your responsibility and choose to keep the kittens, you will have the additional cost of vaccines, parasite control, toys and food for several pets.
Neutering makes for a calmer and cleaner pet.
Another aspect of neutering a cat is that neutering can result in a calmer, and sometimes cleaner, home. Without the drive to mate, your cat may be quieter and not prone to cat calls and an incessant need to seek out a mate. The neutered cat no longer feels the need to seek out and serenade females. He no longer has the stress of needing to mark his territory and urinate throughout the house and yard. Neutered cats are also easier to get along with. They tend to more gentle and affectionate. Neutered males tend to roam less and typically are not involved in as many fights with other animals.
Neutering keeps your pet healthier.
A final positive aspect of neutering a cat is that neutered cats tend to have fewer health problems. Neutering is the removal of the testicles. Without these organs, testicular cancer is no longer a concern and the risk of prostate problems is reduced. For those people who would like to sterilize their cat but do not wish to alter his appearance, testicular implants are available.
The Negative Side of neutering
Neutering is sterilization.
Neutering will result in the sterilization of your cat. He will no longer be able to reproduce, so if you intend to breed your animal, do not have him neutered
Neutering changes his appearance.
Your cat will look different because his testicles will no longer be present. If the absence of these organs is a cosmetic problem for you, discuss testicular implants with veterinarians.
Neutering may cause weight gain.
Home cats gain weight after neutering. Intact animals typically have a strong mating desire and can expend a lot of energy seeking a mate and reproducing. Without this energy burden, your cat may eat the same amount but not burn off as many calories.
*Author is a professor by profession, a cat behavioural consultant, and a cat trainer; he has worked with 6000 plus cats and cat parents, attending to their needs and solving their problems. He is the founder of Mallikas Cattery, a cat care centre, where cat boarding, cat behavioural consultations and cat problems are attended and resolved.