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Cat Neutering Before & After: Behavior Changes & Recovery

Cat Neutering Before & After: Behavior Changes & Recovery

Neutering is an important procedure for your male cat to get in order to reduce stray kittens in your area and also preserve your cat's health from reproductive-related disease. Here, our Seattle vets discuss the behavior changes to expect and recovery process after your cat's neutering procedure.

Having Your Male Cat Neutered

Your vet can assist you in making the decision to neuter your male cat.

Neutering is the process of removing the testicles of a male cat, that produce most of their testosterone. A male cat's testosterone control's their sexual behavior, this includes behaviors such as aggression towards other males, roaming in search of females, and spraying (territory marking). By neutering your male cat you are minimizing or preventing these behaviors, reducing your cat's risk of developing some serious health conditions, as well as keeping your kitty from fathering unwanted kittens.

The Behavior of Male Cats

As stated above having your male cat neutered helps limit or stop undesirable behaviors that are linked to testosterone (sexual behaviors). These changes could happen right after or several weeks following their procedure. The environment, age, or breed of your kitty generally doesn't have any big effects on these changes.

By reducing or eliminating your cat's desire to roam the risk of them being in wandering-related accidents decreases. Their chances of being scratched or bitten by other cats (which can put your cat at risk of contracting illnesses) are also reduced because their aggression towards male cats is lowered.

Neutering doesn't completely stop your cat from spraying, because cats can also do this when they are nervous, not just to mark territory, although the smell of this urine is less intense in neutered cats.

A Cat's Recovery After Neutering

When you first bring your kitty home you should keep them in a dark, quiet, room because your cat's eyes may be sensitive as a result of the protective ointment your vet may place on your cat's eyes (so they don't dry out). Cats can also sometimes be aggressive as the result of the discomfort they are feeling, so we also recommend keeping other people and pet's away from your furry friend during this time.

Here are some other precautions you can take to ensure your kitty's comfort following their neutering procedure:

  • For the first 24 hours give your cat a small bit of water to sip on, and just a half or quarter portion of their food to limit vomiting
  • Place a clean litter box close to their resting area, so they won't have to walk far to relieve themselves
  • Instead of kitty litter use shredded paper for the first week to keep dust and dirt from sticking to the incision site
  • Don't let your cat run, jump, climb stairs, or go outside for the first seven days after their procedure because it could slow their healing, we recommend keeping them in a crate or secure room during this time

It takes approximately 24 to 48 hours for your cat's nausea to go away and for their appetite to fully return, but it will take roughly 7 days for your male cat to recover completely after being neutered.

If after 48 hours your cat is still vomiting, lethargic, having diarrhea or their appetite isn't returning call your vet immediately.

Signs To Watch for After Neutering Your Cat

While it is normal for recently neutered cats to experience side effects such as lack of appetite, nausea, lethargy, and vomiting you should call your vet if these symptoms don't go away after 48 hours following their procedure.

Your kitty might also not be able to defecate or urinate normally for the first 24 to 48 hours after their procedure, if your cat isn't able to relieve themselves normally after 72 hours have passed it's time to call your vet. You should also keep an eye on the incision site to ensure it is not bleeding or being irritated by your cat.

If your cat displays any of these symptoms after being neutered, contact your vet right away:

  • Swelling or redness at the incision site
  • The incision site has reopened
  • Pus or discharge coming from the incision site
  • Refusing to eat
  • Your cat hasn't urinated in 24 hours

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

Contact our vets at Seattle animal hospital to book a spay or neuter operation for your cat.

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