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

Spaying your cat at Oak Tree Vet Centre

The technical name for a cat spay is an ovariohysterectomy, which means the removal of the ovaries and uterus. You will, more commonly, hear people saying that their cat has been spayed or dressed. The operation is a one off procedure and is not reversible. Once your cat has been spayed she will never be able to have kittens.

What are the advantages?
The main advantage is that your cat will not be able to get pregnant. Cats generally come into season around six months old and once at this stage, the cat is very good at getting pregnant. In addition, the behaviour of your cat will change and a normally content indoor cat will become disturbed and may try to
escape from the house to seek a mate. Cats who come into season for the first time often look to the owners like they have developed some sort of painful ailment like a colic, with wriggling about on the ground, demanding of attention and crying out. Spaying 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. Spayed cats are not mated and generally have less contact with other cats in the neighbourhood and therefore their risk of infection is decreased. Prevention of pyometra and ovarian cancers. As the majority of cats are spayed, these diseases are mercifully rare but are seen in the older, entire cat. There is also a reduction in the incidence and severity of mammary tumours. Mammary tumours or breast cancer is seen in the unspayed older cat and early spaying drastically reduces the risk. Mammary tumours are almost never seen in cats spayed at six months of age.

What are the disadvantages?
Spaying, although a routine procedure for small animal veterinary surgeons, is a major operation, involving entry into the abdominal cavity. 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 spayed cats compared to their entire counterparts.

There is no doubt that a spayed cat requires less food for a given weight and activity level. We suggest reducing the amount fed by 15-20% immediately after stitches out. It is easier to increase the food for cats who lose 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 spaying.

When should I spay my cat?
We feel that the ideal time to spay a cat is at six months old, although adult cats can be spayed at any time.

Booking your cat in for a spay.
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 as it is important that your cat has an empty stomach for her 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 spaying are fully healthy but we shall, after weighing, examine her 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. Please ask for further details. A standard blood screen for animals under 6 years old costs £41.54. A more detailed analysis for animals over 6 years old costs £50.95. 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 at a cost of £35.95.

The consent form
We shall ask you, or an authorised adult, for written permission to perform the spay 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. 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. All anaesthetised patients are monitored throughout, by the theatre nurse under the constant supervision of the operating surgeon. All patients have their own set of operating drapes and instruments. There is never re-use of drapes or instruments without them having been cleaned ultrasonically, packed and sterilised in our modern hospital standard autoclaves.

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 at the wound, or removing the stitches. We have both anti lick products and plastic Elizabethan collars (like lampshades) for sale, to help you. We have to make a charge for re suturing wounds, often involving another anaesthetic, if stitches have been lost as a result of a lack of supervision.

Stitches out
We normally remove stitches after ten days. Contacting us if you are worried. Please phone for advice in the first instance on 539 7539. 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 may 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.

Finally
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.

If you would like to print a copy of any of these, please right click and print to your printer.

We’ll be happy to send or email you a copy if you don’t have a printer.

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