Should Cat Owners Sterilise Their Cats?
Yes! Definitely! Cats can breed up to 4 times a year and they can have 4-5 kittens each time. Even up to 8 in a single litter is not surprising. So, just imagine 4 pregnancies multiplied by 5 kittens each time. 1 female cat can produce up to 20 kittens a year! That’s why it’s important to sterilise your cat.
Even if you do not intend to breed your cat, there are numerous benefits to sterilising your cat, both for you as a cat owner and for your cat’s physical health and mental well-being.
Reduces Undesirable Behaviour
- Peeing outside the litter box
- Being aggressive to humans or other pets
- Making noise
- Wanting to escape from the house (to look for a mate)
Improves Cat’s Physical Health and Mental Well-Being
- Calmer temperament
- Reduces stress and aggression
- Reduces territorial behaviour
- Prevents hormonal related cancers such as mammary cancers and testicular cancer
For Female Cats
- Being on heat every 3-6 weeks is an extremely uncomfortable experience for a female cat. A female cat on heat will also persistently make caterwauling noises which signals her discomfort, and the noise can be a nuisance to members of the family.
- Getting pregnant is taxing on a female cat, especially a young female cat less than a year old.
For Cat Welfare in our Community
Allowing your cats to reproduce contributes to poor cat welfare in our community. There are already too many homeless and abandoned kittens in need of a home. They are living hard lives on the streets. It is undesirable for cat welfare to create even more kittens to vy for homes with these homeless ones. If you would like the experience of caring for a new litter, please consider fostering homeless kittens instead.
Is it sinful for Muslims to sterilise their cats?
Absolutely not. On the flip side, it is more merciless not to sterilise your cats, as it contributes to poor cat welfare in our community.
See Muis’ Response on Responsible Cat Ownership and Fatwa on Neutering Cats, encouraging members of the Muslim community to sterilise their pet cats:
When Should Cat Owners Sterilise Their Cats?
Healthy kittens as young as 4.5 months old can be sterilised provided they meet the minimum weight of 2kg. Spaying or neutering your kitten before their first heat or sexual maturity reduces the chances of contracting hormonal-related cancers like mammary cancers and testicular cancer by 7 times! If you prefer to wait, the maximum optimal age to sterilise should be 6 months. But note that kittens as young as 5 months can go into heat.