Neutering - do the right thing!

Stray kittens
Stray kittens
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Our recent ‘Neuter for a fiver’ campaign saw just under 200 vouchers issued for both male and female cats to be neutered over the four-week period, writes Peterborough Cats Protection spokesperson Sheridan Gaunt.

Neutering is key to feline population control; a cat can have up to three litters a year with between three and seven kittens in each litter. That can add up to 21 caring homes for Cats Protection to find each year, just for one cat’s kittens!

This campaign alone potentially saved in excess of 475 unwanted kittens being born. It’s crazy when we see three figure numbers, to even comprehend, how that can be. But it is, and the facts are simple. Cats can become sexually active from just four months of age and will breed with brothers and sisters! Gestation in cats (the length of pregnancy) is only nine weeks, and a female cat can come into season again just six weeks after giving birth. Pregnancy and motherhood are physically very demanding for a cat – repeated pregnancies take their toll and not every birth is straight forward.

Cats can struggle in labour and emergency c-sections are costly, anywhere in the region of £500-800! When you look at that cost, it’s crazy not to do the right thing and neuter your cat!

As a voluntary run branch, we are unable to offer neutering for £5 long term to the general public, but we may be able to help you through our means-tested scheme. If you are in receipt of benefits or on low income then please get in touch.

You may not realise that an unneutered male cat is likely to roam, looking for a female to mate with. This increases the risk of them being hurt in a road traffic accident.

They may also start to display territorial behaviour, such as spraying, fighting, putting them at risk of contracting serious diseases such as feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV), and feline leukaemia virus (FeLV). Unneutered females are likely to call or wail when in season and are at just as much at risk of roaming and contracting FIV and FeLV, through sexual contact and bites.

Knowing all of this, no cat owner would want their cat to be put at unnecessary risk, when neutering is a safe and simple procedure.

Now that Spring has arrived, our helpline calls are on the increase with reports of stray cats, pregnant cats and unwanted kittens. It is so important that if you have concerns about any of the above, you get in touch straight away. Please also check your garages and sheds regularly as a cat will look for a safe, quiet place to nest and give birth.

Please don’t leave it until it’s too late, the sooner we know, the sooner we can help.

Contact us on: 0345 371 2750 or drop us an email at enquiries@peterborough.cats.org.uk.