If you listen to The Big Butt Morning Show, you know that on Whisker Wednesday's I always stress the importance of spaying and neutering your cats and dogs. It helps to control the pet population and it also improves the health of the animal.

Dogs can have two litters a year. The average number of puppies in a canine litter is 6-10. Cats can have 3 litters a year. The average number of kittens in a feline litter is 4-6.

Many people don't know that kittens can go into heat and start reproducing at four months, and dogs by 5 months. Shelters and rescue groups are flooded with puppies and kittens and are overwhelmed.

The benefits of spaying (females) include:

Population control! No more unwanted litters!

No heat cycles; therefore, males will not be attracted.

Reduction or elimination of mammary gland tumors, ovarian and uterine cancer, especially if done before the first heat cycle.

Reduced incidence of pyometra (a very serious infection of the womb, also known as the uterus).

Better overall health for the cat whose body is no longer stressed and depleted by constant reproduction.

The benefits of neutering (males) include:

Population control! No more unwanted litters!

Reduction or elimination of spraying and marking.
Elimination of hormone-fueled cat fights.

Risk of testicular cancer is eliminated and the incidence of prostate disease is decreased.

Less desire to roam. Toms stay closer to home and tend to become calmer and friendlier.

A reduction in the spread of FIV, a virus spread between cats by deep bites/puncture wounds received while fighting.

Longer lifespan: outdoor intact male cats tend to get hurt or die while roaming in search of a female in heat. Neutering removes the urge to roam.

Sterilizing our community cats is beneficial to the community as well. Cats that are spayed/neutered during the TNR (Trap, Neuter, Return) process are healthier animals and make better neighbors. Complaints of overpopulation, fighting, yowling and marking will decrease, making the cats more welcome members of the community. Sterilization also saves taxpayer and animal welfare dollars as fewer animals will be captured, impounded and eventually euthanized due to illness, injury or lack of homes.

Did you know that just one in twelve cats born will find a home? The rest are killed or are homeless. Save a life. Spay or neuter all the cats -- your pet(s) and those outdoors. Want to save 100 cats? Just spay one! We can save them all from a life of suffering. Please spay and neuter. There are not enough homes for all of them.

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