As in any surgery, spaying and neutering cats has inherent risks, including:
– Reactions to anesthesia. “Anytime there is anesthesia involved, there is a certain amount of risk to the pet,” says S.H. Cheong, DVM, Ph.D., a reproduction specialist at Cornell. Hypotension (low blood pressure) and hypothermia are potential complications. A cat’s body temperature may drop during induction, the surgery or in recovery, leading to hypothermia, especially in young or small individuals where heat loss may occur rapidly.
– Accidental damage to surrounding organs, especially during laparoscopic surgery,
– “If the veterinarian does not remove all the ovaries, the female can still experience heat cycles, including trying to attract male cats and even become pregnant,” Dr. Cheong says.
Male cats with undescended testicles can be at high risk for testicular cancer if the non-descended testicles are not completely removed.
– Among the advantages that veterinarians cite for performing spaying and neutering are:
Reduced risk of cats developing mammary gland and testicular cancer.
– Less likelihood a male cat will want to roam to find a mate or get into fights with male strays.