According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), 3.4 million cats enter shelters every year. By neutering or spaying your cat, you help prevent the feline population from growing and save animal lives.
Why spay and save? Below we’re sharing just what spaying your cat means and how it helps prevent the growth of feral cat communities and keeps your home clean.
What Does It Mean to Spay a Cat?
Spaying (also known as neutering) is the act of sterilizing your cat or permanently preventing them from reproducing. We typically use the word spay when referring to female cats and neuter for male cats, however, the terms can be used interchangeably.
Spay procedures usually occur when cats are young and are performed by a licensed and trained veterinarian. The process is pretty routine, with many vets (and animal organizations) proactively telling cat owners when they should consider scheduling the surgery for their pet.
Why Should You Spay Your Cat?
Like we mentioned above, thousands of cats are born every day. Feral cats in Florida, for example, are prompting communities to implement trap-neuter-release (TNR) programs to help reduce the community cat population.
There are other reasons to spay your cat, too. Those include:
- Preventing Cancer – Cats, like humans, can also get cancer. Studies have shown that spaying female cats before they go into their first ‘heat’ prevents them from developing ovarian, cervical, or mammary cancer later in life.
- Protecting Against Other Diseases – Not only does spaying prevent cancer, it also protects your cat from other diseases too. Cats are known to fight over their mates and territory, which can lead to scrapes, cuts, and the transfer of infections. Spaying and neutering your cats reduces their urge to fight, thus protecting them additional diseases.
- Reduces Cat Roaming – When female cats go into heat, their natural instinct is to find a mate and procreate. However, this instinct can lead to roaming, disease, infection, and unwanted kittens. Even male cats can get the urge to go find a mate, causing them to leave the house and roam the streets. Roaming can be dangerous for cats because they can get hurt crossing roads and highways, get into fights with other cats or animals, or get picked up by animal control.
- Keeps Your Home Clean – This might seem odd, but spaying or neutering your cat helps keep your home clean. Male cats spray their urine to mark their territory, letting other male cats that someone has already claimed the area. It also lets female cats know a male cat is here to mate. By neutering your male cat, you reduce his need to spray and mark territory in your home. This keeps your home clean.
Spay and Save Cat Lives
Spay and neuter your cats to save not only their lives but the lives of other cats as well. If you want to learn more about decreasing animal overpopulation and save the lives of animals in your local community, contact a shelter or one of the Florida Animal Friend grant recipients.
Florida Animal Friend helps save the lives of cats and dogs through grants for low-cost spray and neuter programs. For more information on Florida Animal Friend, or to contribute to our cause, please purchase a plate or donate today.