No food after 7pm, the previous evening and allow only a modest drink (if wanted) in the morning.

Please arrive between 8am and 8.45am

Castrating your cat at Oak Tree Vet Centre

Castration is the removal of the testicles. The operation is a one off procedure and is not reversible. Once your cat has been castrated he will never be able to father kittens. The normal cat has two testicles situated in the scrotal sac. It is not uncommon, however, for one or both testicles to fail to migrate down into the sac during early life. This is known as cryptorchidism.

Cats who are cryptorchid should not be bred from.

What are the advantages.

Cats are castrated for a variety of reasons. For many owners the fact that he will not be able to father a litter of potentially unwanted kittens is the main reason for castration.

Reduction of smell and spraying behaviour. Most un-neutered cats by one year of age have the characteristic, pungent tom cat smell and spray strong smelling urine around the home and garden.

Reduction in fighting. All cats are inclined to squabble over territory but the entire tom is the main culprit. It is not uncommon for tom cats to need treatment for bite wounds on a frequent basis.

Castration lowers the risk of contracting Feline Leukaemia Virus, Immunodeficiency Virus and Infectious Peritonitis Virus. All of theses fatal diseases are believed to be spread, in part, by mating as well as through close contact e.g. fighting. Castrated cats are not mated and generally have less contact with other cats in the neighbourhood and therefore their risk of infection is decreased.

Reduction in vagrancy. Most entire cats have a tenancy to wander and be a nuisance to neighbours, especially if there are entire female cats around. Road traffic injuries and deaths are all too common in entire toms with other things on their minds.

It has been estimated that the combined death toll from the above leads us to conclude that the average life expectancy of a full tom is likely to be between three and four years, a full decade less than a neutered tom

What are the disadvantages

Castration, although a routine procedure for small animal veterinary surgeons, is a surgical procedure, involving a general anaesthetic. A small number of animals have problems with anaesthetics, the operation itself and with post operative haemorrhage. This can result from too much activity, dislodging one of the internal blood vessel ties. Surgical experience, good nursing help and careful supervision does reduce the risk

but that risk cannot be totally eliminated. There is a higher proportion of overweight castrated cats compared to their entire counterparts. There is no doubt that a castrated cat requires less food for a given weight and activity level. We suggest reducing the

amount fed by 15-20%. It is easier to increase the food for cats who loose a little weight than to diet those who have become overweight. We encourage weight checking and weigh your cat at each annual vaccination so that fine tuning of food intake can be made. With proper management, there is no reason for any weight gain as a result of castration.

There is an increase in signs of Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease (FLUTD) which is also called Feline Urological Syndrome (FUS). In this disease, crystals form within the urinary tract causing cystitis. In extreme cases the crystals can block the narrow urethra of the male cat causing an acute medical emergency. It is thought that neutering increases the risk in that the penis and urethra is narrower than that of an entire tom and the neutered cat tends to be less active and urinates less frequently allowing longer for the crystals to form. The vast majority of FLUTD cats are treated by modification of diet and a few medicines.

When should I castrate my cat

We generally castrate cats from six months of age.

Booking your cat in for castration.

We perform routine surgery Monday to Thursday each week and given a little notice we can usually accommodate a specific day to suit your schedule. We will ask you to withhold food from 7pm. the night before and take up all fluids at bedtime. It is important that your cat has an empty stomach for his surgery. We open at 8am. and normally admit day patients up to 9.30am but again we shall try to accommodate a later admittance if it helps you. Most cats admitted for castration are fully healthy but we shall, after weighing, examine him thoroughly to establish whether there are any pre existing problems which might have influence over methods and materials used. Some such problems, however, cannot be determined by physical examination alone and we have the facility to perform a pre anaesthetic blood screen to determine whether there is likely to be an increased risk. We have a modern blood analyser for this purpose and results are available within 15 minutes, allowing any adjustments to be made in the anaesthetic protocol. An extended blood screen for all animals costs £51.96.

Please ask for further details.

As is routine in human hospitals, we can provide intravenous fluid support (a drip) for our patients. We believe this benefits all pets and allows them to make a stronger and speedier recovery. You may request this service on the consent form and the cost is £36.95.

The consent form

We shall ask you, or an authorised adult, for written permission to perform the castration operation on your pet. We make time to guide you through the consent form so that we can explain any terms that you do not understand or are worried about.

The operation

All pets undergoing surgery at Oak Tree Vet Centre have an analgesic (painkiller) as part of their premedication, so that they are more comfortable and therefore less frightened when they wake up. We allocate each pet a pen within our day care kennels, which are situated within our central preparation room. The pens are warm and sound insulated and each has a lightweight polyester fleece for warmth and comfort. All animals are within sight of the operating team, allowing prompt intervention, if required. All anaesthetised patients are monitored throughout, by the theatre nurse under the constant supervision of the operating surgeon. Following induction of anaesthesia, all theatre cases are intubated to protect their airway and maintained via a modern gas anaesthetic system, featuring sevoflurane. the latest and considered best anaesthetic gas.

Going Home

We are as flexible as we can be, regarding sending your pet home and we do not have to discharge animals prematurely as we have ample comfortable accommodation for them. When you collect your pet we shall give you full verbal, practical and where necessary, written instructions on post operative care.

Care of surgical wounds

Wounds do not normally require any attention except for you preventing your pet licking excessively. We have both anti lick products and plastic Elizabethan collars (like lampshades) for sale, to help you.

Contacting us if you are worried.

Please phone us, in the first instance on 539 7539 in the first instance. Please have a pen and paper ready to write down the phone number if ringing out of normal reception hours.

Please do not arrive at the surgery without telephoning first. This will lead to delay in treating your pet as the veterinary surgeon may not be there to see you.

*n.b. all fees correct at time of writing. E.&O.E.


We know that even the most minor operation may cause you considerable anxiety. We shall keep you involved all the way and we assure you that we shall give your pet individual and caring attention.

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