I'm hoping to get an appointment to get my one year old boy done this week... as he has started targeting his little 2 month old sisters that live in the same apartment block... Not nice.

I'm feeling anxious about not being able to feed him the night before the op. I've read online that they need to stop eating by midnight the night before, but my Vet is telling me that we have to stop feeding him by 6pm of the day before! A totally different and very stressful scenario from the midnight one. Who is right? the 500 articles on the internet or my Vet? I can't get a second opinion... I live in a small developing country and it's this centre or nothing.

Will my boy be traumatized by the waiting period? I know that even if I make an appointment for 9am, and they take him into the waiting cages, it may be an hour or so before he gets seen to and I may not be allowed to be with him. I know after the op he will either wake up at home... or wake up back in the cages but too groggy to comprehend where he is... regardless I've got it in my head he will be so traumatized that even when I bring him home he may not be able to recognise he is home and safe and will try and flee. It sounds ridiculous when I say it out loud but I don't know what to expect.

Should I take time off work for his recovery period? If for example I collect him at 4pm of the day he's had the surgery... should I not go in to work the next day?

  • 1
    Please split up your questions into different posts - Read more on this policy. Use the edit function to remove 3 questions from this post and Ask Question function to open new posts for these questions
    – Zaralynda
    Commented Jun 16, 2015 at 0:16
  • Hi @Zaralynda , how do I delete the post altogether?
    – AnneFiji
    Commented Jun 17, 2015 at 7:45
  • You cannot delete this post because it has an answer that received upvotes. In this situation you could flag for a moderator attention, but (as a moderator) I'm reluctant to delete it because Yotus would loose a significant amount of reputation.
    – Zaralynda
    Commented Jun 17, 2015 at 16:12
  • @Zaralynda: go ahead, it's not the end of the world :-)
    – Yotus
    Commented Jun 25, 2015 at 12:53
  • Missing meals for a day or two really is not the end of the world. Reason to be a bit grumpy, perhaps, but not more than that. Think of how you'd feel fasting before surgery on yourself; it's really the same thing
    – keshlam
    Commented Oct 9, 2023 at 14:15

4 Answers 4


You shouldn't be anxious about this procedure.

(1) Your cat should be on an empty stomach. For our cats (male and female), we stopped giving them food the evening before the operation (recommandation of the vet).

(2) It depends on your cat. Our male was relatively quiet (also in the waiting cages), but the female was a bit more nervous. The vet told me I could stay a little while with her, which I did, and everything was ok.

(3) You shouldn't need to take time off work. They will recover quite quickly. Be sure to give them as much love as you can when you are home though :-)


If the cat's stomach is not empty when he is anesthetized for the surgery, there is a real danger that he could vomit and he might aspirate the material - that means the material would go down his windpipe - and they might not be able to clear the material before he suffocated. Don't have surgery of any type done on a cat without him or her fasting for at least 10 hours.

Any cat can go 10 or 12 hours without food. It will not traumatize him or hurt him in way.

Think about yourself - not eating for 12 hours will not cause you any harm. If you consider the length of time you are asleep at night, you go quite a few hours without eating; the word breakfast means "break fasting." Breakfast is the meal that breaks your overnight fasting.

The procedure to neuter a male is quite simple. The vet makes a small incision in the scrotum - that is the pouch which contains the testicles, then gently pulls the testicles out and cuts the tube attached to them. I don't think they do anything else at that point as to sealing the cut tubes, it should not be needed..

That's it - finished - nothing to it.

My wife and I have had a total of 26 cat since we got married in 1987 - not all at the same time - so we have a bit of experience with neutering and spaying.

Our vet doesn't even bother to suture or glue the incision closed with surgical adhesive.

When the testicles are removed, the scrotum shrinks up quite a bit and the incision closes quite tightly. Of the 18 or 19 males we have had neutered, I can't recall one that had the incision sutured or glued.

Except for the stress of the trip to the clinic, and being around strange people and being in a cage, and that stress level will likely be very low, the cat does not suffer during the process.

You refer to things you've read on the internet -

The problem is that anyone with a computer can post "expert" advise on line, There is no way to know just how experienced and knowledgeable they really are.

You should go with the advise of the vet.

Take up all food after about 6:00 PM - you can leave water out. Put the cat in the carrier in the morning and take him to the clinic. Don't worry about the surgery. I've seen it done and I think that if I needed to, I could safely neuter a male cat.

There simply is not much involved with it.

Some real problems can occurs if you don't get a male cat neutered before about 6 months of age. Among them is the male starting to mark his territory around the house - they mark with urine and with anal gland fluid. Trust me, you don't want a male cat marking his territory inside; it is very foul smelling and it can be difficult or impossible to get a male to stop marking even if you have him neutered after he has begun marking.

Given the number of cats and kitten which are killed each day shelters around the country - hundred of thousands - there is no excuse for not having male cats neutered and females spayed. None!

Just do as the vet says and things will be fine.

The worst thing that can happen is your being stressed out about it. The cat will barely know anything has been done.

When you get him home, keep an eye on him until the anesthesia has worn off. They don't give a lot of anesthesia to a male before a neutering. It takes just moments to do the job and they don't need to put the cat under deeply or for a long time.

Follow your vet's advise about dealing with your cat at home.

Basically, you simply keep an eye on them until your sure the anesthesia has worn off. About the only thing to watch for is if he takes to climbing or jumping up on things and is still sedated. Our Rusty came from from his neutering still quite sedated. He went to use the litter pan and wound up falling into it. A few minutes latter I caught him winding up to jump on a really high shelf. I grabbed him and advised him that he needed to wait until he wasn't so dizzy. He agreed and proceeded to go to sleep on my lap.

Some vets will want you to put an Elizabethan collar on the cat - those cone shaped things used to prevent the cat getting at an injury or such. There is no valid reason to subject a newly neutered cat to wear one.

If your vet wants to do it just tell him that people have told you that it is very rare to need to use one.

We have never had a male or female damage the surgical area and living with one of those collars is not something you want your cat to endure.

He will likely lick the surgical area but that's fine. He will keep it clean.

You only need to be concerned if he is actually opening up the incision - but we've never had that happen.

Go to Google and search on: male cat neuter procedure video

I just did so and found what looks like hundreds of videos showing the actual surgery. Go and watch some. There is less blood loss from the cat than if you cut your finger. There simply are not any large blood vessels in the surgical area.

Don't worry, he will be just fine.


When we got our boy done, we stopped feeding him about 10 hours before the procedure. He still managed to sneak something in while we were asleep which he promptly threw up when he was given the anesthetic. He was fine and the procedure went well.

We took him home right after and we were told to put him in his carrier so that he wouldn't try to get out and walk. They do not understand what's happening to them and if they try to walk and run they'll end up hurting themselves. He did wake up to pee and like the good boy that he is he tried to walk on his own in that groggy state to his litter box. I simply got the litter box near his bed where he peed and then fell asleep right back.

We were also asked not to feed him anything much that entire day. We fed him a little water after about three hours. Then gave him a little wet food a little later which he just nibbled at. We were specifically asked to give wet food only.

By 9 pm that evening he was about 70% awake. I stayed awake most of that night with him. The doc had told us that she had given him antibiotics and pain killers so he should be comfortable. Within a day he was fully awake and back to his usual shenanigans. We were advised to not let him jump too far or let him lick that area for the next couple of days. We took him in for a quick checkup the next day and the vet told us that he was recovering just fine. Within the next 48 hours he was back to his old self.

We had the same apprehensions as you but we made it through :)


First - waiting for a year is far to long to wait to have a male cat neutered - far too long.

A healthy male cat can be neutered anytime after 6 or 7 months. The vet will decide if you should wait.

Delaying the neutering does not good and can cause health problems. An one year old un-neutered male cat can begin spraying to mark territory. I'm not talking about just urine, I'm talking about urine combined with unbelievably foul smelling anal glands secretions.

I can be very difficult to stop a male spraying even after they are neutered.

As to the procedure itself - I have seen it done often enough that I would hesitate to do the procedure if it were absolutely necessary to do it then and there.

The vet will anesthetize the cat, make a small incision in the cat's scrotum, reach in with forceps and gently pull one testicle out, tie off the tube, and snip the testicle free and then repeat the procedure for the second testicle.

A properly neutered male will be back to his normal self when the anesthesia wears off.

You don't need to put an Elizabethan collar on him, he will not damage the surgery site.

In fact, I have never known a vet to put in even a single suture or use surgical adhesive. As one vet told me, once the testicles have been removed, the scrotum just sort snaps shut by itself and stays closed.

We have neutered maybe 15 males and have not had any problem with any of them.

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