The Importance of Early Age Spay and Neuter of Ragdoll Kittens
Originally published Jan 13, 2012 - running it again because this continues to be an ongoing problem for me through email. Sometimes it can be hard to have a site that supports purebred cats. I receive nasty emails from people that do not support breeding - and there are strong reasons why they don't support breeding. Sometimes, I struggle with supporting breeding because of the emails I receive about irresponsible breeders.
Even breeders who think they are being responsible, end up causing irresponsible breeding.
How does this happen? They release a kitten that has not been altered to a pet owner who signs a contract that they will spay or neuter the kitten, however, something comes up - financial strain or the pet owner changes his or her mind and wants to breed the cat.
Even if they sign a contract, it doesn't stop them. Some people don't care about contracts and in fact, the original breeder doesn't have much control once the kitten is released. Sure, they can sue, etc. But once the damage has been done, it's been done.
No court of law can take away the fact that the cat has produced a new litter of kittens, irresponsibly.
However, I do support responsible breeders who do not release their kittens without early age spay and neuter. Floppycats.com is nearly 4 years old and in the process of receiving e-mails and comments from readers and visitors over the years,
I have come to the conclusion that it is CRUCIAL for breeders to responsibly spay and neuter kittens BEFORE they go to their forever homes. I get emails every week from people that decided to breed their pet quality kitten "because she's so cute" with their neighbor's Siamese cat - and the kittens are so cute and can I list them on my site.
Or people that couldn't afford to neuter them, so they now need to get rid of the cat because he's spraying all over the place. It is heart-breaking for me, thinking about everyone involved and to think that it could ALL be avoided if breeders just early spayed and neutered their cats.
Yes, many breeders have kitten adopters sign contracts where they say they will spay and neuter the kitten they are adopting, but it doesn't always happen. And if it doesn't happen 100%, then it's not good enough. There are too many dangers involved in NOT spaying and neutering early on.
When my parents got Rags and Cosby in 1989, they signed a contract that they would neuter the two kittens and they did when they were 6 months old. It's just that not everyone does this. Caymus and Murphy came neutered from their breeder, Bluegrass Rags. Charlie and Trigg came neutered from their breeder, Soulmate Ragdolls.
There are special vets that know how to to do this procedure and responsible breeders will find them. Do you know a responsible breeder that does early spay and neuter? Please feel free to list them in the comments section below. Here are additional resources where you can learn more about it.
Further Reading on Early Spay and Neuter in Cats
- The Cat Fancier's Association - Winn Foundation EARLY SPAY/NEUTER IN THE CAT
- Feline spaying pros and cons - the reasons for and against spaying cats
- THE ANTI-NEUTERING LOBBY - A STEP BACKWARDS FOR FELINE WELFARE
- Early-age neutering of dogs and cats in the United States (a review)
- AAFP Position Statement: Early spay and castration
There are always two sides to every argument, here is a resource that is opposed to early age spay and neuter - but I bet if they ran this site they would change their minds!