Neutering Advice from New Lodge Vets

Dog, Cat, Rabbit Vet

Neutering a female dog

Spaying (neutering) is a major procedure and is carried out under a full general anaesthetic. Spaying a bitch involves removing both ovaries and the entire reproductive tract down to the level of the cervix. The operation is generally carried out 2-3 months after their first season or may be performed in young bitches before their first season depending on age and breed.

The main reason why this procedure is carried out is to prevent any chances of unwanted pregnancies. However, there are also other advantages. Your bitch will no longer come in to season, suffer from false pregnancies or be at risk of womb infections. Depending on how many seasons she has had, she will have a much-reduced risk of getting mammary tumours in later life.

After the operation the skin along the midline of the abdomen is sutured (stitched). These sutures are usually dissolvable ones buried under the skin (and so cannot be seen). We cover the skin closure in a layer of tissue glue and post-operative dressing after the operation to keep the wound clean. This dressing is usually removed at the post-operative check by one of our nurses.

It is very important that your dog does not lick the wound site, as this will slow healing and may cause the wound to open. We recommend your dog wears an Elizabethan collar for 10 days post op to prevent her interfering with the wound. These are normally included in the operation cost.

Neutering a male dog

Castration (neutering) is a major procedure and is carried out under a full general anaesthetic. Castration makes him less likely to roam after bitches, less assertive/aggressive, and easier to handle. Castration also reduces the risk of some cancers such as testicular, prostatic and perianal tumours.

Castrating a male dog involves removing both testicles from the scrotum which is left to shrink back as testosterone reduces post op. During the operation the skin just in front of the scrotum is sutured (stitched). These sutures are usually dissolvable ones buried under the skin (and so cannot be seen), a layer of tissue glue is applied to help stop wound contamination.

The operation is generally carried out when the dog is mature depending on age and breed and size of dog – small breeds may be castrated at an earlier age.

Exercise restriction is important to reduce post-operative swelling and complications. It is very important that your dog does not lick the wound site, as this will slow healing and may cause the wound to open. We recommend your dog wears an Elizabethan collar for 10 days post op to prevent him interfering with the wound. These are normally included in the operation cost.

Neutering a female cat

Spaying (Neutering) is to prevent any chances of unwanted pregnancies and is carried out under a full general anaesthetic, with an endotracheal tube inserted and oxygen provided.

An area of hair on the left flank will have been clipped to ensure maximum surgical sterility at the operation site. Certain breeds of cat may be clipped under their abdomen. The coat should grow back in 2-3 months.

After the operation the small incision in the skin is sutured (stitched). These sutures are usually nylon stitches that need to be removed 14 days post op. A collar to stop wound interference is recommended and provided within the cost of the operation.

If you have only recently acquired an adult cat it may be necessary to keep her in for a longer period after the operation up to 4 weeks until she has got used to living with you. Spaying will not prevent a stray cat from disappearing again.

Neutering a male cat

Castration (neutering) a tomcat involves the removal of both testicles under full general anaesthetic with endotracheal tube inserted and oxygen provided. There are no stitches to be removed after a cat castration.

Castration makes him less likely to roam, fight and spray urine in the house. He will also be at a lower risk of developing bite wounds such as abscesses and contracting some of the cat viruses such as FELV and FIV that are often spread by fighting.

If you have only recently acquired your cat it may be necessary to keep him in for up to 6 weeks after the operation until he has got used to living with you. Castration will not prevent a stray cat from disappearing again, although it will make it less likely.

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