Why You Should Cut Off Your Cat’s Balls
WRITTEN BY: HABIBI BRIDGES
It’s kitten season! Shelters all over the country have been overflowing with new adorable little kittens (and pups, of course)–and while that is heartwarming of course, there’s a darker side to the situation that people tend to forget about.
Every eight seconds, a cat or dog is euthanized in the USA. There are simply too many cats and dogs to be homed, and this problem has been exacerbated during the pandemic (yes, we are still in one) with many people being forced to move due to economic and/or health reasons and thus having to give up their beloved animals.
Every eight seconds, a cat or dog is euthanized in the USA.
During the lockdown, many Americans turned to bringing home a pet for company since most of us were stuck indoors while socially distancing. Since things have opened up again and most have returned to work, people realized they no longer had time to tend to the animals they adopted/bought during the pandemic, resulting in shelters being burdened with pet owners giving up their neglected pets. They either did not anticipate the amount of work that goes into caring for and their pets, didn’t prioritize them, or due to personal circumstances (economical or health related) were physically unable to care for their pets any longer.
Not to state the obvious, but many have sadly died due to Covid-19 related illness. That said, most rescues in San Francisco and the east bay are fully booked throughout the summer and are only taking appointments for the fall.
There are other reasons why you should spay/neuter your pet: unfixed pets spray, especially males. It doesn’t just smell like urine, it smells like urine mixed with burning rubber and the worst body odor you can possibly imagine. I don’t know how it is possible that smell could attract a lady cat, but males also do this to mark their territory. Unfixed cats tend to be more aggressive (especially males) and having two unfixed males in the same house can be dangerous for them both! Especially if they are vying for a female cat’s attention–which they always are. Hence why unfixed males tend to be escape artists, and try to “claim” as much territory as they can while finding willing females to help preserve their bloodline. Sound familiar? I’m starting to think we should start neutering men too (just kidding).
Fixed cats also have a longer life expectancy–while there are specific ailments that plague neutered and non neutered cats respectively, there are more serious health condition associated with keeping your cats bits intact. Obviously, fixing your male cat eradicates any risk of testicular cancer, and significantly lowers the risk of having complications concerning their prostate. Not only that, but they tend to be more affectionate and calm after being neutered and are much less likely to run away (and spray!)
Male cats will have an altered appearance after being neutered, FYI. Tom cats usually have large jowls due to testosterone which help protect their neck in fights with other tom cats. Following castration, however, as the body’s testosterone levels decrease, their jowls will shrink. Most vets will also remove the scrotal skin during the neuter procedure, which apparently upsets some folks–which is why testicular implants are a thing (lmao).
Having girl cats spayed can also reduce unwanted behavior, such as marking. Obviously, spaying sterilizes them, which in turn prevents them from facing any complications due to giving birth. Also, your cat no longer goes in heat after spaying, which is a relief, because it’s awkward and annoying to have your cat moan and yowl all week while gyrating on the floor. Its best to just avoid that entirely.
The only thing you really have to look out for after fixing your kitties is weight gain. Searching for mates does burn off calories, and since they are no longer participating in such activities, you might have to somewhat reduce their meal portions–otherwise you may have to put them on a diet. On that note, hopefully fixing your cats will fix any behavioral issues you are dealing with, all while helping to lighten the load on animal shelters during this season. You will also be helping in the prevention of unwanted and mistreated animals, and making sure that these pets only have homes that WANT them.