How to Tell If a Cat is Spayed

No matter where you acquire your female pet from, whether from a shelter, rescue group, stray cat, or breeder; it is crucial that any female pets be spayed to prevent going into heat – an unsightly period when she displays unwelcome behaviors such as uncontrolled yowling and aggressiveness.

There are multiple ways to tell if a cat has been spayed; scars are an obvious tell, while tattoos or physical markers may also provide evidence.


When cats are spayed, the surgery will leave a scar behind – usually on their lower abdomen; but this depends on your vet and how your cat was spayed; sometimes even somewhere different!

Healing spaying scars on cats typically appear as a light pink vertical clean line on their abdomens, with bumpy spots that feel different to touch than other parts of their skin and closer together edges compared to pregnancy-induced scarring. To be certain of it, ask those who raised or cared for her, breeder or store worker about whether she has been spayed; they should know and also whether there are ear notch/tattoo markings.

Some programs that trap and alter feral cats to reduce population have programs which mark spayed cats with green markers at the time of spaying or clip one ear (this varies depending on program), making it easy to tell whether a cat has been spayed if you haven’t seen her in heat yet.

An indirect way of telling if a cat has been spayed may work in an emergency situation. Cats in estrus typically become very affectionate, roll around freely in playful frenzy, rub themselves against people and objects repeatedly and make loud yowls of pain; if she is not experiencing these behaviors she likely has been spayed.

If a cat shows no physical signs of being spayed, blood tests can be administered to confirm her ovulation status. A negative test for Anti-Mullerian Hormone indicates she does not have active ovaries – which indicates spay – but not always definitively; due to sudden drops in hormone levels that stimulate mammary gland development following spaying procedures that could trigger temporary mammary growth before returning back to normal levels again. It is advised to always visit their veterinarian if concerns about an animal’s ovulation status are raised regarding her ovulation status.


One reliable way of telling whether a cat has been spayed is to look for green tattoo markings near her incision site on her abdomen. These tattoos can usually be found when parting her fur and trying to spot small, thin green lines. Some veterinarians also tattoo inside an animal’s ear as another indication they have been sterilized – these markings help with trap-neuter-return programs and help identify female cats as sterilized.

Traditional cat spaying involves extracting both its ovaries and uterus, known as an ovariohysterectomy, but modern veterinarians often employ less-invasive procedures that involve cutting the uterus into two pieces before stitching it back together again. If a vet chooses this approach, you’ll typically notice an incision on their abdomen which appears as a clean cut with red or pink hues after surgery has taken place – look out for these cats post surgery!

Check for green line tattoos on or in a cat’s abdomen or ear to indicate that they have been spayed, as these are a popular method for veterinarians to mark pets that have been spayed. They typically appear as green lines running lengthwise across their abdomen; however, these ink-stain designs can sometimes also be inked into their ears to indicate spaying as well.

Another way to detect whether or not a cat has been spayed is to observe her behavior and look out for signs that she is in heat. Unspayed female cats enter periods of increased sexual activity known as estrus that last up to three weeks, during which female cats may exhibit more aggressive or excited behavior, including spraying urine or emitting loud, yowling meows.

If you are uncertain whether your cat has been spayed, visit a vet or veterinary clinic to receive a thorough exam. Trained professionals will quickly be able to ascertain if a female cat has been spayed; and can order tests if needed.

Ear Notches

As part of a trap-neuter-release program to control feral populations, medical staff will perform a standard procedure that does not cause pain: clipping one ear tip. According to Neighborhood Cats, veterinarians usually trim approximately quarter inch off one of these tips so as to make their ears appear flatter after spaying a cat.

Spaying can also be identified by a square section of clipped or shaved fur over the left side of the abdomen. Although not always visible depending on the length of her hair, having this mark indicates she was spayed using the flank approach.

Some rescue groups and vets provide another means of showing that a cat has been spayed or neutered: tattooing an inner ear with either black or blue ink to show she has been spayed or neutered, typically visible when parting their fur. This tattoo usually shows as a clear green line.

Female cats with notched ears tend to be spayed, although not all females with notches may undergo the procedure due to accessory ovarian tissue that continues to produce estrogen even after being spayed; such girls will show signs of estrus such as yowling or spraying during periods when she needs her period.

If there is no visible indication that your cat has been sterilized, consult with a veterinarian who will recognize any telltale signs and order blood tests to confirm if her ovaries have indeed been removed.

Checking whether a male cat has been neutered is easier than testing for spaying. To locate their testicles, hold up their stomach while gently pressing your thumb against their anus where testicles would normally sit – if that area feels hard and firm, chances are good they haven’t been neutered yet; though this method may not always work due to other health problems that cause notched ears.

Blood Tests

If you are uncertain whether your cat has been spayed, or have adopted one from a shelter or rescue, the best approach would be to visit a veterinarian for an exam. A vet will be better equipped than you to recognize physical indicators of sterilization; plus they may conduct some blood work as part of their exam.

Blood tests are a staple practice at veterinary clinics for many reasons, particularly as part of annual screening exams on older cats. Regular blood tests can detect kidney disease, diabetes and hyperthyroidism – conditions you might otherwise miss!

A complete blood count (CBC) test is an in-depth diagnostic exam of your cat’s body cells, such as red and white blood cell counts, hemoglobin levels and immune system responses. Your vet may run this exam for other reasons such as when evaluating injured or sick cats prior to administering anesthesia for surgery.

If your female pet is spayed or not, a blood test can confirm this fact. Spaying prevents heat cycles which end in pregnancy from starting; during this period of estrus female cats yowl and rub on things to try to attract males hoping they’ll mate with them. Unspayed female cats will continue entering heat cycles periodically, increasing risks such as uterine cancer or infections such as pyometra.

A CBC can reveal whether your cat has been exposed to certain diseases, like hepatitis and leukemia which tend to affect intact females rather than spayed ones. Furthermore, it’s ideal for older animals at risk of these conditions or those being administered long-term medications.

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