If you have ever had surgery or the experience of coming out of anaesthesia, you will know it can leave you feeling pretty rotten. However, the help from friends and family can help you feel much better and support you with recovery. If your cat has to be spayed, she may also need a bit of extra care during the days following surgery.
Any loving cat owner will want to do what is best for their pet, and following the vet’s advice and reading up in advance on what to look for can give the cat a more comfortable recovery. So here is a short care guide on the basics of looking after your cat after being spayed.
Basic understanding of spaying procedure
Understanding the basics of the spaying procedure can help you provide a more relaxed recovery post-operation. When a cat is spayed, they are put under general anaesthesia so that she is unconscious for the surgery. The veterinarian then makes a small incision in the cat’s abdomen wall of the uterus, and ovaries are then removed. Once completed, the vet will close the incision with stitches, and your cat is monitored as she slowly gains consciousness.
Depending on varying factors such as the cat’s age, medical history, and any abnormalities during surgery, the cat may need to spend the night at the vet. The vet will then monitor the cat and be close by in case there are any complications. Many cats can go home on the same day as the surgery, but others need to be monitored, so do not be surprised if they ask for the cat to stay longer for observation.
Collecting your cat from the vet
Once the cat is considered safe to go home, the vet’s off will arrange a time for you to pick up your pet. During discharge, you will meet the vet, and they will run through the postoperative care. This includes how to monitor the cat for infection, medication instructions, and any dos or don’ts.
During your discharge appointment, you may be given a lot of information, but don’t let it overwhelm you. Take notes and ask questions if you have any concerns regarding your cat’s care. Also, if you are giving your cat different supplements, from the best CBD oil UK to the well-known fish oil, be sure to ask your veterinarian for additional recommendations for use. It may also provide peace of mind if you also get details of the vet after hour emergency policy to have a point of contact during the night.
Standard recovery time for cat spay
The vet will let you know how long it will roughly take for your cat to recover from the spaying procedure. Cats tend to recover from this procedure between 10 to 14 days, but every cat is different, so be patient with them. During the recovery period, your cat will require a bit of special care, and you will need to monitor them to ensure the healing process is going well.
Two weeks may seem like a long time, but it tends to go quickly. The majority of cats get back to their usual selves after just a few days. However, it is still essential to keep a close eye on the incision, her appetite, and any strange behaviour to ensure she recovers without any unforeseen complications. In case there are any concerns, it is best to contact the vet as soon as possible.
Try to keep the cat calm
Many cats will want to keep to themselves for the first few days but try to restrict any running and jumping – it could lead to her stitches tearing, the spay site becoming aggravated, and causing bleeding. If your home has lots of large open spaces, it may be worth keeping the cat confined to a small room to help encourage quiet time and calm activity. A bathroom or bedroom tends to work as a good option. For households with multiple pets, keep the recently spayed cat separate to discourage play.
The cat will usually only have to be separated from others for a few days, but the vet will be able to give details on the exact activity restrictions. Remember to share the information with anyone else living or spending time in the house during the cat’s recovery period – including any children as it is essential they do not play with the cat while recovering from surgery.
Closely monitor the cat’s behaviour
The most important part of your cat’s aftercare is observation. It is usual for the cat to be quiet and keep to themselves for the first couple of days after surgery. The cat may also not eat as much as expected due to the effects of the anaesthesia.
Recently spayed cats may also sleep more and walk more slowly. Cats also tend to jump less, which is good as overactivity can break the stitches. The medications can also make the cat look a bit zoned out, but this effect should go away once she no longer needs to take medicine.
Keep on the e-collar or surgery recovery suit
Perhaps this is one of the more challenging parts of the post spaying operation. You have the task of trying to keep the e-collar or surgery recovery suit on your cat. They are not always necessary but if the vet has sent your cat home with one or the other, make sure the cat continues to wear it.
The e-collar or surgery recovery suite will keep the cat from licking or biting the incision, which interferes with healing. The cat may not be best, but remember that they will only need to wear it for a short period and will help promote a safe recovery.
Watch out for signs of pain
Pay close attention to the cat to see if they are showing any signs of pain as it could indicate that there are some problems with her recovery. It is usual for the cat to be lethargic for around 12 hours post-surgery, but if it gets worse after that time, it is best to give the vet a call. Likewise, you should inform the vet if the cat has also gone off their food after 12 hours.
Other signs that the cat is having difficulty with their recovery are walking with a hunch, bleeding around the suture area, or meowing unusually. However, if there are any concerns with the cat’s post-surgery recovery, it is best to contact the vet, even if out of office hours, as it could be something serious.
Spaying is a routine operation, but it can be a worrying time for a pet owner. However, it is considered the best option for the long term, especially if you do not want kittens to look after or put your cat’s health at potential future risk. There are many additional ways to help make the cat’s recovery more comfortable, such as purchasing a cat bed, so she has somewhere cosy to rest. But the most helpful thing you can do is stay vigilant and be patient during the 10 to 12 day recovery period.
This is a collaborative post.