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How can you tell if a cat has been spayed?


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Old 03-10-2010, 23:56
sesmo
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Hi all,

I got my cat a few years ago from a rescue centre. She was picked up as a stray so they didn't have any information on her. She's an indoor cat- she doesn't like going out but I've been thinking about "what if" she does get out. I don't want her to have kittens, but I haven't a clue if she's been spayed or not. I've had quite a few cats over the years and they've all been done as soon as possible so I don't know what a female cat in heat is like.

I presume a vet would be able to tell by doing blood tests, or can they find out another way? If she doesn't display any signs of being in heat would that mean she's already been done?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 04-10-2010, 00:19
Lippincote
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If she has not displayed any unusual signs over the past few years, she's been neutered. Believe me you would know if she came into season (which she would, several times a year, if unneutered). They howl and yowl and become very agitated for days at a time.

A vet cannot tell if a female has been neutered by blood tests AFAIK.

So if she's been with you for a few years and has not driven you mental by 'calling' several times a year, you can feel pretty confident all is well.
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Old 04-10-2010, 00:30
Mitten Kitten
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Three and a half years ago I had a cat pitch up and move in with me. I finally accepted her as mine a few weeks later when she got an abscess from a fight and I had to take her to the vets. I asked if he could tell whether she had been spayed or not. He told me that he would have to shave her to find the scar. Considering the pain she was already in and also being scared by being at the vets, I decided not to put her through it and to chance that she had been done. At the time, my brother was after kittens so if she had any, they would have had a home. I have now come to the conclusion that she must have been done. I have never experienced a cat in season and never had cats before, so wouldn't know what its like either. There have been no kittens, so perhaps I am lucky.
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Old 04-10-2010, 11:34
sesmo
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Hi,

thanks for the replies! No, she drives me mad in many ways but not by yowling or howling.

Wouldn't fancy the chances of anyone trying to shave her to find out. Think I'll assume she's been done as she hasn't done any of the stuff mentioned.There's only a slim chance of her getting out, but knowing my luck if she hadn't been done I'd then have kittens to be a servant to as well.
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Old 04-10-2010, 11:50
cosmo
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I took my cat in as a stray and after a few weeks took her to the vet to get her spayed.

They phoned me about 30 minutes after I left and said she already had the scar.

What I did notice is that she has a small piece missing from the top of one of her ears. I understand that is in some cases an indication that spaying has been done.
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Old 04-10-2010, 13:10
Fizzbin
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If she's an cat who has been indoors for 3 years then it 'should' be obvious to tell if she's been spayed. She will go on-heat every few weeks - http://cats.about.com/cs/pregnancybirth/ht/oestrus.htm
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Old 04-10-2010, 13:38
Emzie21
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I've often wondered this myself about girl cats and found the above really interesting! I rescued Ruby who was already done (told by the shelter so confident and she's been an outdoor cat for three years with no babies), and Elphie was adopted and I took her myself.
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Old 04-10-2010, 13:57
cosmo
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If she's an cat who has been indoors for 3 years then it 'should' be obvious to tell if she's been spayed. She will go on-heat every few weeks - http://cats.about.com/cs/pregnancybirth/ht/oestrus.htm

My neutered cat regularly displays all those signs apart from the spraying.
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Old 04-10-2010, 17:22
Maisey Moo
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A friend had a rescue male cat. He went to get him neutered as the vet said he was still intact. When he came too pick him up the vet said he hadnt done it as he had already being done. He had false balls.
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Old 04-10-2010, 17:33
Lippincote
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The 'signs' mentioned in the link are a bit misleading, in that they do not give a proper idea of the volume, consistency, intensity and agitation involved. There is absolutely no mistaking the behaviour of an intact female in season.
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Old 04-10-2010, 17:41
Zigesa
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I would say that if she has come from a rescue centre, she would have hopefully been spayed before being rehomed. I know that the RSPCA spay and neuter before rehoming. I am a volunteer and have read notes about them finding faint spaying scars, so maybe they shaved her when they first got her and realised that she had been spayed. I was in with a cat last week who had had kittens but came into season again, she totally didn't want to know me, even though the week before she was all over me on my lap etc. She was acting really strange, meiowing, putting her butt in the air, arching her back etc etc. I am sure you would know if she was in season!!
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Old 05-10-2010, 12:17
Mitten Kitten
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A friend had a rescue male cat. He went to get him neutered as the vet said he was still intact. When he came too pick him up the vet said he hadnt done it as he had already being done. He had false balls.
How bizarre

I was in with a cat last week who had had kittens but came into season again, she totally didn't want to know me, even though the week before she was all over me on my lap etc. She was acting really strange, meiowing, putting her butt in the air, arching her back etc etc. I am sure you would know if she was in season!!
Trouble is though, for those of us who have never experienced it, that sounds like normal behaviour to me. My cat goes through phases of ignoring me and being extra loving. She also is sometimes very vocal or not at all. She is always arching her back and shoving her bum at me to stroke. She is my first cat, so I have nothing to compare her with. My brother has always had boys (but never replaced their bits with false ones )
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Old 05-10-2010, 12:42
Zigesa
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How bizarre



Trouble is though, for those of us who have never experienced it, that sounds like normal behaviour to me. My cat goes through phases of ignoring me and being extra loving. She also is sometimes very vocal or not at all. She is always arching her back and shoving her bum at me to stroke. She is my first cat, so I have nothing to compare her with. My brother has always had boys (but never replaced their bits with false ones )

LOL at this bit in bold!

Oh I do undestand if you have never experienced a cat in season, but my female, who is spayed also is very vocal and puts her bum in the air when we stroke her (We always say "Put your bum down ) but when a female is in season, the behaviour that has been mentioned is way more than just 'normal' cat behaviour. It is highly exagerated, the cat is generally in their own world totally, not even acknowleging their humans, well this cat last week didn't acknowledge me anyway, and the mieowing is different to their usual voice. Their sole aim is to find "a man" I also saw a female cat a few years ago near enough arch her back so much and put her bum in the air so high and she even put her front legs down on the ground! TBH her call made her sound ill because we didn't realise why she was making the noise. it was rather scarey!
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Old 05-10-2010, 12:48
susie-4964
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She was acting really strange, meiowing, putting her butt in the air, arching her back etc etc. I am sure you would know if she was in season!!
My male neutered Maine Coon maiows, arches his back and sticks his butt in the air the minute you start stroking him! Mind you, even the vet says he's a complete tart.
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Old 05-10-2010, 13:20
Zigesa
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My male neutered Maine Coon maiows, arches his back and sticks his butt in the air the minute you start stroking him! Mind you, even the vet says he's a complete tart.
Oh that is really funny! I bet you all laugh and call him "a tart" when he does it!! LOL!
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Old 05-10-2010, 13:52
elke21
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I took my cat in as a stray and after a few weeks took her to the vet to get her spayed.

They phoned me about 30 minutes after I left and said she already had the scar.

What I did notice is that she has a small piece missing from the top of one of her ears. I understand that is in some cases an indication that spaying has been done.
Are you saying that spayed cats have a bit of their ear cut off, by the vet, to indicate that they have been done?
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Old 05-10-2010, 16:42
camer
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Op, have a look for a scar under her fur.
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Old 05-10-2010, 18:04
sesmo
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Gosh, who knew you could buy falsies for male cats. I'm a bit shocked!

I've had a look under her fur, but can't see anything. Will try the other side next time I can get her to sit still for long enough.

With regards to the ear snipping thing, the vets I go to does that to feral cats so its easy to tell at a glance if a cat has been done. Most farm cats are the same.

I'll keep all the signs of being in heat in mind and just watch her behaviour over the next few weeks. Never noticed anything like that before.
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Old 05-10-2010, 18:30
Lippincote
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Are you saying that spayed cats have a bit of their ear cut off, by the vet, to indicate that they have been done?
Only feral or rescued cats are eartipped (sometimes). It's so that if they are ever picked up again, a centre will know they are spayed and not try to put them through the op again. Because you cannot tell otherwise - I have known female rescues be taken for spaying only to discover they are already done, and the vet just has to sew them up again.

A cat that has an owner will not be eartipped.

I am mystified by the falsies comment. I wonder if what happened was that the vet did an open castration, which leaves the cat with visible 'bumps' - just smaller bumps than before! A civilian might think he was uncastrated looking at him, although I doubt a vet would. My last two Burmese males have had open castrations.
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Old 05-10-2010, 18:36
susie-4964
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Oh that is really funny! I bet you all laugh and call him "a tart" when he does it!! LOL!
I've noticed a bit of mincing - he's definitely on the camp side! The other two cats (also neutered males, but much more butch) sometimes laugh and point!
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Old 05-10-2010, 18:58
ejm
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Are you saying that spayed cats have a bit of their ear cut off, by the vet, to indicate that they have been done?
It is quite common abroad with the stray cat population, I haven't heard of it being done in this country though.
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Old 08-10-2010, 23:10
wsmansem
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What I did notice is that she has a small piece missing from the top of one of her ears. I understand that is in some cases an indication that spaying has been done.
Correct !
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Old 08-10-2010, 23:20
lorry
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You really can't mistake a female cat in season, at least not in my experience! Their behaviour change from one day to the next is so extreme, they become complete nymphomaniacs and it can be quite embarrassing even!

I was so ignorant until then I hadn't even heard of cats going on heat so it was quite alarming when it happened to my kitten when she was only about 5 months old - I thought she was in terrible pain until I googled her behaviour and realised what was going on.
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