Caring For Your Cat After Her Spay Surgery

Caring For Your Cat After Her Spay Surgery

If you have a cat or a kitten and you’re considering getting her spayed, you might be curious about what this involves. Spaying is a medical procedure that helps prevent your pet from having unplanned kittens. It also has some extra advantages, like reducing the risk of certain diseases and stopping unwanted behaviours. Today, our team of vets in Toronto North Animal Hospital is here to guide you on caring for your furry friend after her surgery.

care of your cat after surgery

Taking Care of Your Cat After Spaying

If you see any of the following signs, don’t wait – contact your vet or an emergency clinic immediately. These could be indications of a serious problem after the surgery, like internal bleeding or urinary tract issues:
1. Your cat doesn’t want to eat for over 12 hours after the surgery.
2. She seems very tired or weak.
3. Her gums look pale or white.
4. Her belly looks swollen.
5. Her breathing is either very fast or very slow.
6. She’s throwing up or having diarrhea multiple times.
7. She’s straining to pee but can’t produce any urine.
8. She hasn’t peed within 12-24 hours after the surgery.

  • Ensure you follow all the instructions your vet gives you after the surgery. These might include:
    Make sure your cat gets plenty of rest; keep her in a crate or a small room to stop her from jumping, running, or going upstairs.
  • Check her incision site(s) every day.
  • Keep an E-collar (the cone) on her to prevent her from licking the incision. Even though she might not like it, most vets recommend it until the follow-up appointment.

During the first 12-24 hours after spaying, keeping a close eye on your cat is crucial. Don’t leave her alone during this time. After that, as long as she seems comfortable and is urinating normally, you can leave her in a confined area with the E-collar on.

Taking Care of Your Cat at Home after spaying

When your vet gives you instructions for taking care of your cat at home, it might include some or all of the following:
1. Make sure your cat doesn’t do any strenuous activities like jumping, running, or climbing stairs.
2. Keep an eye on where your cat had surgery or where there are stitches.
3. Ensuring your cat keeps wearing her E-collar (the cone) or a special shirt for healing after surgery.

4- Make Sure Your Cat’s Incision Heals Properly:
If your cat’s incision opens up, it can lead to health problems requiring urgent vet care. If you notice any of the following, contact your vet right away:

  • Redness or swelling around the incision.
  • Bruising.
  • Unusual odour or discharge from the incision.
  • The incision is coming apart.

Remember that a little pinkish or slightly bloody discharge and some redness around the surgical area are normal for up to 24 hours after your cat’s spay surgery. Keep giving your cat the medications your vet told you to. Usually, your cat’s stitches stay in place for about 10-14 days. It is roughly how long your pet can heal after surgery.

5- Prevent Your Cat from Interfering with Her Surgical Incision
Cats often tend to groom uncomfortable or itchy areas, but it is crucial to take measures to prevent your feline friend from doing so. One of the most common causes of post-surgery infections and premature suture removal is cats licking their surgical site. To mitigate this risk, it is necessary to provide your cat with an Elizabethan collar (E-collar) or a special surgery shirt to discourage her from licking or biting at the incision.

6- Restrict High-Energy Behaviors:
Excessive activity before recovery is another significant factor that can lead to reopened incisions. Proper healing of sutures requires minimal physical exertion and ample rest. Activities such as engaging with other pets, leaping onto her cherished cat tree, or chasing after a noisy cat toy can pose a threat, as sudden movements may reopen or rupture the surgical sutures. Your veterinarian is likely to advise limiting your cat’s activities for a period of 10-14 days following the surgery.

Managing Your Cat’s Pain After Spay Surgery

After your cat’s spay surgery, it’s essential to ensure her comfort because she might experience some discomfort or pain for about 5-7 days. Cats are good at hiding their pain, but your vet can provide the right medicines to help her feel better during the recovery. Make sure to follow your vet’s instructions regarding medication, and don’t stop giving them unless your vet approves. Neglecting post-surgery issues like inflammation and pain can worsen the situation and even lead to irritation if your cat licks the surgical site.

Remember, never give human medications to your cat, as they can be extremely harmful and even deadly for them. If you need advice or treatment for pain management, contact your vet.
In most cases, vets don’t prescribe antibiotics for cats after a spay surgery because it’s considered a “sterile procedure.” However, if your cat experiences significant bleeding, is older, or is in heat during the surgery, your vet might prescribe antibiotics to prevent infections.

If your vet has prescribed antibiotics for your cat, ensure she completes the entire course, even if she appears to be feeling better or returning to her usual self. Incomplete antibiotic courses can lead to complications.

Taking Care of Your Cat’s Bathroom Habits After Spay Surgery

If you’ve noticed that your cat hasn’t urinated for a whole day, this is a serious situation. You should immediately contact your vet or an emergency clinic. Keep a close watch on your cat during her recovery to ensure she’s urinating and having regular bowel movements. Sometimes, spay surgery can impact the urinary tract, so observing her urination during the first 24 hours after the procedure is essential.

Once your cat urinates within the first day, you can relax and not be as vigilant about her bathroom habits. Constipation can occur, but most cats should have normal bowel movements after surgery. Anesthesia can sometimes lead to soft stool or constipation, depending on how your cat reacts.

If you notice diarrhea persisting for more than a day or constipation lasting over two days, reach out to your vet to determine the best steps for your cat’s care. Please refrain from using over-the-counter medications or human food to address these issues, as they can contain harmful toxins and have dangerous side effects.

Caring For Your Cat After Spay Surgery


What to Feed Your Cat After Spay Surgery?

Your cat should regain interest in food after surgery, although it may take 12-24 hours for her appetite to return due to the anesthesia and the stress from the procedure. Continue to follow your vet’s feeding instructions. If you have concerns about your cat’s appetite, contact your vet. Some oral medications, such as antibiotics and certain pain relievers, can reduce her appetite and cause nausea.

Sum Up

Caring for your cat after spaying is a crucial responsibility as a pet owner. Following the advice provided by your veterinarian and paying close attention to your cat’s recovery process can ensure a smooth and successful healing journey. Remember to monitor your cat for any signs of complications, maintain proper hygiene around the surgical site, and administer medications as your vet prescribes. Your feline friend can recover comfortably and return to her normal, healthy self after her spay surgery with proper care and attention.

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