Tattoo Saves Cat From Surgery

Sweet little Spooky was saved from cryptorchidism surgery by this green tattoo.

Spooky has his eye on a toy to play with.

Spooky showed up at a client’s home a few weeks ago. They have two cats already, and no room indoors for him to be a pet, but they didn’t want nature to ravage him, either. We examined him and found his left ear partially missing. Whatever caused that happened a long time ago, because it is totally healed. He was otherwise physically healthy.

His Feline Leukemia Virus and Feline Immunodeficiency Virus tests were negative, as was his stool test for intestinal parasites.

With that good start, we obtained blood and urine for preanesthesia laboratory tests, and those results came back good, too.

Surgery was scheduled and everything was uneventful until we began to prep the surgery site. Under his thick, healthy

After removing the hair around Spooky's scrotum, this green tattoo kept us from searching surgically for testicles that weren't there.

black hair was hidden a green tattoo, a spay/neuter tattoo! This was a clear indication that he had been neutered long before we first saw him. It takes about a month for hair to begin growing when plucked (the usual method of removing hair around a cat neuter site. This hair comes out very easily and the technique provides a very clean surgical field). Hair will have reached full length in two to three months.

The most likely explanation is that Spooky was picked up as a feral cat, submitted to a low-cost spay/neuter service and neutered as a very young kitten. He was probably returned to the same area he originally came from, only to be exiled by older, intolerant male cats who ran his colony.

Thus, he came to live near our clients who took him in as a project.

He may have to continue to live as an outdoor kitty. but he will always have a home.

See you Monday, Dr. Randolph.

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