HomeCat HealthneuteringHow male cat neutering affects their appearance


How male cat neutering affects their appearance — 12 Comments

  1. Hi Michael, thank you about writing those articles. I have a question.
    It’s about the head, it’s about the body, it’s about the male.
    There are two ways to be neutered, before 5 months and after that.
    I saw on the picture the difference in the head shape.

    The question is:
    If I neutere the male after 5 months, after he developed this big head, is the neutering going to affect his look?
    Or his look is going to be affected by the neutering, doesn’t matter before or after 5 months?
    To look male he needs his balls in any case?
    Also could you please write an article how the female head etc. changes after the neutering.
    And also why is good a cat to be neutered and why is not good.
    Positive about being neutered and positive being not neutered.
    And negatives being neutered and negatives being not neutered.

    Thank you in advance.

    • Hi there, you won’t see that tomcat, jowly, unneutered appearance unless they are unneutered permanently or for a long time. You see it in stray and feral cats. And in my view, it doesn’t make much difference whether they are neutered before or after five months. And the point is this: you have to neuter your male cat otherwise they may procreate and probably will.

      Plus, there are other what humans call ‘unwelcome feline behaviours’ such as more spraying urine and other tomcat behaviours such as patrolling their territory more vigorously and more determinedly and they might get into fights in doing this. Although neutered male cats often also patrol territories and can get into fights and can also end up spraying vertically against objection the garden (backyard) or even perhaps inside the home. Although it occurs much less often as neutering calms male cats. That is the important difference.

      The general consensus is that everyone should neuter their male cats and spay their female cats. There is no choice on that really and if you adopt from a shelter in the UK or the USA the cat will be spayed or neutered.

      In my experience, spaying of female cats does not alter their appearance. They might become a little fatter because their metabolism has slowed down and people keep feeding their cat the same about. But there is no head-shape difference.

      The positives of spaying a female cat are the same as neutering a male cat in essence which is that in improves behavior from a human standpoint. They no longer go into heat and you don’t get all the unwanted behaviours that that brings to the human-to-cat relationship. It is said that spayed cats are healthier as well because it helps to eliminate certain potential diseases connected to the anatomy concerned with reproduction.

      I might write an article about this as you suggest and if I do, I will link to it in another comment.

      The short answer is that you should not really think about whether you want or do not want to neuter your male cat or spay your female cat. It should be an automatic process and you will have to put up with the slightly altered appearance of the male cat. There is no choice. That is the point that I am making rather laboriously.

      • Thank you Michael,

        well after everything what you wrote, I suppose I need to decide for a female cat.
        The thing is following:
        I live in Germany, but I come from a country on the Balkans ( East Europe) famous with it homeless pets.
        And I have enough fingers pointed on me, because I am a foreigner ( something what I can’t change), so I don’t want to have more fingers pointed, because of doing something like not neutering the cat, when it should be done. And I also want to have a cat with papers, that’s why I decided to buy a cat from a breeder.
        The cat I decided for are the British Shorthair, I like them very much.
        They are quite health and going to live about 15-20 years. So, I need to make sure that I am going to be able to care for the cat for such long time, there is no way that I am going to send the cat to the schelter and I want to make sure that the cat is going to feel well and in the same time I am going to fill all must to do things from the low point, I don’t want to do criminal things.
        But I had no idea that the neutering has such big influence on the look for the male cat. So, I need to decide for a female. I am not sure, but I suppose that the female cats has meaby better character than the male? The female is more going to come to me and meaby is also not going to have a strong smell like the male? For example the urin of the woman ( human) doesn’t smell so bad like the urin of the men. Supposedly same for the cats. Meaby a female cat is better in any case?
        I just would like a cat looking like a cat and having relatively good character. The cats are often not very friendly, I don’t know why.

        I am definitely going to read your articles again and again, to make sure I understood everything what I need to understand about the relationship look/neutering.

        P.S. Sorry for my English, I try my best 🙁

        • Well, you are correct in saying that you should neuter or spay your cat in order to ensure that you don’t upset your neighbours. That is very important. I don’t know whether you are going to let your cat go outside but it will be even more important to spay or neuter your cat if that happens.

          The urine of male cats is no different to the urine of female cats by the way. But male cats are more committed to spraying and defending territory than female cats. But once they are neutered, they don’t spray much but they still might spray and they still might want sex as it happens. The neutering operation on male cats does not make a stark or very big difference to their appearance but it does, in my view, make a difference. I feel that it feminizes the male cat slightly (makes them look more feminine).

          But we are used to that because most domestic cats are spayed or neutered and therefore, we don’t question their appearance.

          If you want to keep your cat indoors all the time then a female cat might be better to accept this and the British Shorthair is a decent choice. The Ragdoll is possibly the better choice for a cat who lives indoors full-time. And they are currently the most popular purebred cat in America. And therefore, I expect that they will be popular in Germany too.

          If you work all day and you have a full-time indoor cat it is not an ideal situation for your cat because they will be left alone all day. This can cause stress due to separation anxiety and it can lead to cystitis.

          I wish you the best of luck. Don’t forget that all purebred cats such as the British Shorthair are selectively bred which means that they are inbred. In general, the lifespan of purebred cats is less than that of rescue cats. You might consider adopting a quiet, calm female rescue cat with an appearance that you like a lot.

  2. I was trying to research this – even trying to find out the effects of sexual development on feline body habitus, period (without the “when to neuter” question), and still found zilch. Had just about given up when I saw this little piece! Thanks for writing. I just got a male kitten and was contemplating when to neuter him. I don’t want to give him an increased chance of spraying post neuter, but would also prefer for him to develop at least some of his male secondary sexual body characteristics. I imagine that once castrated, muscle mass can decrease even if done later, but skeletal development wont reverse! The male sex hormones probably affect the bone structure (like how human males get briader shoulders, bigger jaws) and as evident from the “jowliness” that you point out. Do let me know if you find anything else out. I suppose that I will wait until 6 months as a sort of compromise. Just praying I dont end up with a stinky disaster in my carpeted house 🤣

    • Hi Rebecca. Thanks for commenting. If I had my way I would not neuter male cats because I want a male cat to look like a male cat and not feminised provided I could guarantee that he would not mate with females because I am a responsible cat caregiver. But I can’t guarantee that and in any case my cat is a rescue and the adoption contrast insisted on neutering. I fought to have him neutered at the last possible moment.

      Women are known to love cats. They treat them as members of the family as little humans. They wouldn’t insist on their husband being castrated would they!? I did an article on how castration affects men. It makes them calmer and quieter. Lack of testosterone, I guess.

      Click here for that article if you wish:


      It is a great shame that we have to desex cats. The spaying operation does not change the appearance of female cats but it does change the appearance of male cats. That’s unfair.

      Here is another page on this:


  3. Imagine being so insecure in your masculinity that you’re worried about your cat’s penis size… or any of this for that matter. I hope the author gets some therapy.

  4. Pingback:Adrenal glands of domestic cats produce small amounts of testosterone – PoC

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