Cat Behavior After Spaying

I believe that some people are searching for information about whether a cat’s behaviour after spaying changes because they believe that a queen needs to have a litter of kittens to be psychologically fulfilled. My impression is that a segment of cat owners believe that their female cat should have at least one litter before they are spayed in order to ensure that the cat’s personality is the best it possibly could be. This is not true, I say, and I’m sure that the experts will back me up.

The first picture below is of a fine looking spayed tabby and white. All the cats are from Rocky Mountain Feline Rescue on Flickr…..

Neutering Cats

In addition, the spaying operation, which is called an ovariohysterectomy, will not change her basic personality except perhaps to make her less irritable at certain times of the year. Neither will the operation effect her hunting instincts. A female cat who has been spayed makes a first class household cat companion able to devote herself more completely to her human family because she is less distracted by mating behavior and instincts.

Neither does spaying a female cat make her fat and lazy. It is said that by coincidence the queen (unspayed cat) is usually spayed at the time that she enters adulthood which is when she requires less food anyway. If a female cat eats the same high calorie kitten diet she will put on weight and some people may inadvertently blame the spaying operation for this increase in weight.  The best time display a female is at 5 of 7 months of age before she enters her first heat.

Female cats who are not spayed can become very affectionate and clingy at the time they are in heat. They will tend to be calmer and more independent after being spayed.

Another reason why a cat may put on weight after the operation is that she would have spent a lot of energy in heat and in seeking a mate. In addition she would have spent more energy when pregnant and in feeding her kittens. Remove these aspects from her life and there is a possibility that she may gain some weight. The answer is to ensure she has a well-balanced diet and to keep her active by playing with her more often.

It is said that the operation will, on average, extend her life by avoiding certain potential health problems and of course most importantly the operation prevents her from bringing unwanted kittens into the world.

One last point: after the operation it may be preferable to leave her at the veterinarians clinic overnight to assist her to recover better from the operation as she can be kept very quiet and under supervision at the clinic while recovering from the anaesthetic. The alternative is to bring her home after the operation which requires much more care. Obviously she will be groggy and possibly uncoordinated and may even be more aggressive than normal. Any young children in the household should be kept away.

Source: Book 1 on this page and general web surfing.

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Cat Behavior After Spaying — 19 Comments

  1. I just had my kitten spayed she’s about 6 months & she is not hungry much & seems more moody & skittish is this a common thing ? Its been a week since she had surgery so we let her go outside for awhile today hoping that would improve her mood.

    • I would be a little bit more patient and wait to see what how her mood develops. It is quite a big operation and she’s probably feeling the effects of it still. She probably feels pain and discomfort. Her appetite has dropped a bit and she is tender hence the skittishness. Watch her and check she is healing nicely. If not call your vet. You might even call your vet anyway for reassurance. Thanks for asking and visiting.

  2. Couldn’t agree more and the points made also apply to Tom cats. That a cat must have a litter of kittens before she is spayed is just an old wives tale I heard it a lot as I was growing up especially when I was a kid and I became aware that people in the street were letting this happen then drowning the kits in a bucket of water! Even at 5 or 6 I knew this to be so so wrong and I used to get so upset 🙁

    I have noticed a CPL campaign on the back of buses by us about this very subject, stating its an old wives tale and that female cats don’t need a litter before they are spayed. They direct people to their website to get a voucher which is great, way to go with education and a solution!!

  3. I’ve never really seen any dramatic changes in either male or female cats after being altered. Even spraying (female and male) usually continues but to a lesser degree.

      • Well, those people would be absolutely right to think that there would be a difference in their cat after spaying. There wouldn’t be a litter of kittens. The only difference.

        • Yea exactly Dee. That why i choose to get them Fixed. As its the responsible thing to do. Plus its hard to get rid of unwanted kittens. I was abit upset the other day as a friend was going to put her cat down that was only 3 years for aggressive behavior. I said to her you would be better to take her to SPCA. Have since found out the Cat has calmed down alot which I’m so relieved as she is young, I think the Cat is abit Jealous as a younger kitten has come into the house. As i was trying to encourage her not to put her down, but rather look at why she was behaving that way. So im very thankful as 3 is way too young.

  4. Thats right its just maybe some people struggle with a change. Maybe people need time to adjust. I’m sure they will come back again.

  5. Oh dear really? Thats sad. I understand that things do have to change. Even When its something we dont like. Yea I always wanted to protect my animals, as i do believe that cats dont always want to kitties. I changed my blog, to Word Press now and im loving it.

      • I haven’t stopped commenting Michael, will catch up later, just too much going on here in real life right now and lack of sleep leads to poor concentration and at present I just can’t catch up with it all.
        It’s true that spaying a cat doesn’t change her.

  6. Very Great Article as, I’ve just got my Jasmine Fixed I Agree with everything you said. I agree its important to get females fixed as soon as they get to 5 months old. I just dont think its right to let them have kitties as there are already enough kitties in shelters and i just dont think its fair on the animal personally. I dont think it makes them put on weight. They just need plenty of love and cuddles, lots of play time & interaction. I think as Cats get older there is more of a chance to put on weight like it is for us adults.

    • Thanks Kylee. The other regular visitors have stopped commenting because I have upset them in making changes but they are perfectly entitled to make comments and write articles for the website if they want to.

      You do a good job with your cats in ensuring that they are spayed and neutered. Well done Kylee.

  7. A stray kitty came to my home and had kittens .I kept one little female kitty.She was loved and petted and slept in my bed.I took her at 6 months to be spayed. After she got well,I could not keep her at home.I had to catch her to bring her into the house.Now 12 years later ,she is still roaming the woods and shows up at feeding time for petting and food.She still comes in the house rarely and hides in the cabinet for a while but then wants out. Any ideas as to why she turned into a yard kitty?

    • Hi Nancy. I think the reason is not to do with spaying but in becoming and adult cat and deciding to wander. Some cats do prefer to be outside and they can decide this unexpectedly. It tells us that an indoor life not acceptable to some domestic cats.

    • Nancy I’d guess your cat had a feral father who mated with the stray queen you took in and he passed his outdoor genes to her. Ferals are far happier outdoors and because you feed and pet your cat she must have a very happy life, the best of both worlds for a cat 🙂

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