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How to tell if they're spayed?

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
Is there any way to tell if a female cat has already been spayed?
post #2 of 12
The only way I know of, and I've had vets check twice like this, is to shave their belly and see if there is a spay scar. Otherwise, there isn't an external way/from a distance to tell from what I know.
post #3 of 12
SOme vets/shelters/programs tattoo the ears, but beyond that... just the scar...
post #4 of 12
Yeah I'd look for the scar... my dog is 14 years old now and I can still see her scar... and I've discovered she has a belly button not too far above her scar haha
post #5 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Forensic View Post
SOme vets/shelters/programs tattoo the ears, but beyond that... just the scar...
Yeah. My kitties have an ear tattoo. It serves 2 purposes. A tattoo in the right ear indicates a spay/neutered animal. It is also a unique number registered to me with the Humane Society, so it serves as a way to locate me in the event that one of them gets lost.
post #6 of 12
You shave the belly and check for a visible spay scar. Now here's the problem with some spay scars- they can be VERY small and hard to notice if the pet was altared when they were young and the vet made a small incision. Sometimes you can actually feel the questionable spay scar once the belly is shaved and feel internal metal sutures (a lot of ASPCA/APA vets /etc use the metal ones. On those it's easy to feel.

Now at my shelter where i work- we use spay tattoos after sewing up the animals- we put tattoo ink into the incision site (my shelter uses a light green, another in the area uses blue- and so on- so that if they get one of our animals in they know it's from our shelter and vise versa- helps keep track). The spay tattoos are awesome because you know without a doubt that pet was fixed and you don't have to open up any questionable ones! I am 100% pro spay tattoos!!!! They're great! Vets offices will do them to- anyone who is looking into having their animal altared needs to really consider spay tattoos for their female pets (males all you have to do is feel the test. area and you can tell if they're neutered or not so they don't need one.)

That being said- a lot of times if a pet is microchipped and registered- a shelter/vets office would be able to type in the number and go online to see if the pet has been marked as altared or not. There are also ear tattoos- but those are NOT as reliable and if not done properly they can fade and become hard to read. I don't recommend them- i prefer microchips. As far as another visible indicator- some shelters clip the ears of altared animals as a physical indicator that they have been fixed. Now the problem with that is if you get in a cat per say that has been in a fight and has a sliced ear scar that has healed -sometimes it can be hard to say for certain it has been fixed.

The best indication of a spayed female is to shave her and check for a spay scar (if you're looking for one it should be under the belly button and depending on the age the animal was altared it should range from about an inch to a several inches (broad chested dogs like labs usually have longer spay scars) Also- the spay scar may be a bit longer on cats who were fixed when they were in heat or swollen due to pregnancy/etc.

Usually when we have a questionable spay scar at my shelter- i will give my vote as ya or nay as will one other coworker of mine and our shelter vet- and that's normally how we do things- if we all agree that it is a spay scar based on location and size as well as feel of the area- we note in their medical chart "appears to have visible spay scar" (or something to that effect and instruct the owners to bring the pet back if they display any indications of being in heat/etc. If its questionable at all and we have our doubts -we will cut the animal open just to be sure- but we like to avoid doing that if at all possible.
post #7 of 12
You don't always need to shave their belly to see. We had a male cat that they attempted to spay (long story... he was just an animal control kitten at the time, it was a clinic in which 4th year vet students were doing the surgeries and he was a cryptorchid). Anyway, we could always see his scar from the attempted spay because his hair parted where the scar was.
post #8 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by whiteforest View Post
You don't always need to shave their belly to see. We had a male cat that they attempted to spay (long story... he was just an animal control kitten at the time, it was a clinic in which 4th year vet students were doing the surgeries and he was a cryptorchid). Anyway, we could always see his scar from the attempted spay because his hair parted where the scar was.
the spayed male

I was going to say to just put her in front of a bunch of tomcats as a joke but I can't top the one about the almost spayed male.
post #9 of 12
My Sister adopted a Dog from the Pound and she had a Scar. They said she was fixed but she wasnt. They said the Scar must have been from something else.
post #10 of 12
Well if the cat never comes into heat, you know she's spayed
post #11 of 12
My girls have a spay tattoo...Nobody told me it would be there and when I picked them up they had this round circle with a line thru it right under the incision from what appeared to be a black sharpee. Well over a year later, you can still see it so I'm assuming it's permanent. You can also try to part their fur...if they stay still long enuf!!
post #12 of 12
I don't think you can tell without asking the cat's owner, checking for tattoos/scars, or get a vet to check the cat. My females are spayed but two are fatties and people keep asking me when am I expecting the kittens.
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