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    • 03 Feb, 2015

    World Spay Day 2015

    The Mayhew Animal Home participated in World Spay Day on 24th February 2015, successfully neutering 29 cats during the day. We are one of many UK animal welfare charities working to highlight the importance of neutering on this year’s World Spay Day.

    The Mayhew Community Vet Clinic offers low-cost neutering for cats and is part of the C4 Neutering scheme in London.

    You may be able to get help with the cost of spaying. To find out more please contact the clinic:
    Call 020 8962 8017 / Email [email protected]

    Opening hours: 8am-12pm and 2pm-5pm

    Q. I’ve just got a kitten.  When should I have her spayed?

    Your kitten can get pregnant while she is still a kitten herself – so it’s important to have her spayed when she is four months old. Many people don’t realise this, and find themselves with unplanned litters of kittens. In fact 85% of litters of kittens are unplanned.

    Q. Why do cats need to be spayed so young?

    From about four months old, your kitten’s hormones will start to give off signals to male cats (tomcats) who will want to have sex with her. Just as you protect her from diseases with vaccinations and microchipping so she can be returned to you if she gets lost, spaying will protect her from getting pregnant. She can then enjoy doing all the things cats enjoy doing, such as going outside and climbing trees without being pestered by tomcats.

    Q. I’ve heard that a cat should be allowed to have a litter of kittens before she’s spayed.

    This isn’t true – in fact, it’s just an old wives tale. There is no need for a cat to have a litter of kittens before she’s spayed. The sooner she is spayed, the sooner she can enjoy doing all the things cats like to do – such as going out and climbing trees.

    Q. I would like my cat to have kittens – she’d make a great mum and my kids will benefit from the experience.

    Many people like the idea of their cat having kittens but the reality can be very different. Like babies, kittens will need to be looked after and can be very messy – there are likely to be lots of little accidents as they learn to use the litter tray. Then there’s the difficult task of finding loving new homes for your kittens. Saying goodbye can be really hard, for all the family.

    Q. My cat doesn’t go outside, do I still need to have her spayed?

    Yes, it is still advisable. Even if you intend for your cat to live indoors, she could still escape and get pregnant. She will also be very vocal when she’s in season and is likely to attract the attention of Tomcats to your garden. Having her spayed at four months can stop this.

    Q. My vet says he/she won’t spay my cat until she’s six months old

    There are still some vets who prefer to wait until a cat is six months old. This is probably because this is what they have been doing for many years and are set in their ways. However, the British Small Animal Veterinary Association recommends that cats are spayed at four months of age, and more and more vets are now following suit.

    Q. I’ve got two cats from the same litter – one male and one female. Surely they won’t mate?

    When cats get the urge to mate, they are responding to a biological need. They will not be fussy about who they have sex with. Cat owners are often caught out by this and find themselves with an unplanned litter as a result of a brother and sister mating. Also, it is not uncommon for a local tomcat to father a litter of kittens and then go on to mate with his daughters. Inbreeding – for example brother and sister and father and daughter matings – can result in birth defects in the kittens. Spaying by four months can prevent this from happening.

    Q. What about male cats? Do they need to be done?

    Yes, there are very good reasons for having your male cat done. They need to have a simple operation called the snip. This can stop him from spraying in your house to mark his territory, which can be very smelly and unpleasant, and getting nasty injuries from fights because he wants to have sex. He will also be less likely to wander off and get run over as cats that are snipped tend to stay closer to home.

    Having your male cat snipped will protect him from a nasty disease called FIV – which is the same as HIV in people, but for cats. It is spread through cat bites, often between males fighting over a female mate. It can’t be caught by people.

    Q. I can’t afford to have my cat spayed or snipped. Can I get help?

    You may be able to get help with the cost of having your cat spayed or snipped. Please email [email protected] or call 020 8962 8017 for more information.

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