Spaying cats and cancer

A friend of mine was told by the vet that it would be better to spay his (female) cat after she gets pregnant, to eliminate (or lessen? I don’t remember) the risk of some type of cancer. Is there any truth in that? I remember that prior to spaying my own cat I read a lot of literature on the matter and didn’t find anything about this.

From here::

Did your friend mis-hear or misunderstand what the vet was saying? I can’t imagine any responsible vet suggesting that a cat owner planning to spay should contribute to the already large (and often unwanted) cat population by breeding the cat before spaying.

Sounds very odd to me.

Err… is this vet, like, somewhat elderly and set in his/her ways? That’s an old-fashioned – and also wrong – idea as per kayaker’s post. The current view that spaying early is both medically beneficial, and necessary due to overpopulation was adopted by the AVMA in the 90s.

link explaining the low medical risks and positive outcomes found after study:

My nephew has a cat that was pregnant when he found her. The veterinarian suggested immediate spay for health and economic reasons. I think it cost $90 for the spay, but if the cat had problems delivering, a c-section would easily be ten times the cost.

Upon careful reading, I see that this can be interpreted in two very different ways: (1) It would be better to spay the cat after she gets pregnant than before she gets pregnant, or (2) It would be better to spay the cat after she gets pregnant than not spay the cat after she gets pregnant.

(1) is the most natural way to interpret it, but (2) makes the most sense as a piece of medical advice.

ETA: I suppose it could also mean (3) better to spay the cat after she (the vet) gets pregnant, but that makes even less sense…

Nope, it most definitely was (1) :slight_smile:
He wanted to spay the cat now and the vet told him to wait until it gets pregnant first, as this would better for the cat’s health somehow.

That’s why I was so surprised myself.

Edit: the cat is about 8 months old.

Umm, Friend needs to find another vet, that’s one of the more irresponsible things I’ve heard.

Spay the cat pronto, no litter first.

And don’t let her out until she’s spayed, she’s at prime kitten-making age!

If the vet said spay after pregnant and did not say spay after delivery, he might be wanting to spay the cat while it’s pregnant. Has that possibility been eliminated?

No, it has not, and in fact you are right. Nothing has been said of the cat giving birth, just getting pregnant, and I believe getting spayed soon(?) after. It still sounds like needless trauma for the cat to me, even without the possibility of unwanted kittens.

In the Dog Community there is quite a bit of discussion now of newer studies showing linkage of spaying and neutering to widely various physical problems, including poor closure of growth plates in bones, endocrine disorders, and various cancers such as hemangiosarcoma. Some but not all of these problems are seen mainly in desexing before puberty.

I do not know if the same is true for cats. Not a member of the Cat Community. However, there is at least some question whether mammary tumors are actually reduced in dogs.

There is growing evidence that the aggressive effort to desex every last cat and dog has significant medical down sides.

Not that I am coming out in favor of letting pets breed indiscriminately. But I would like to point out that universal spay/neuter is a US/Canadian norm only; in European countries, preventing breeding via surgery is rare – generally animals are left intact and are simply managed; females in season are kept confined or on leash.

If anybody wants cites there are lots out there. Here is the first one I found.