On Aug. 21, at 3 p.m., Dr. Goetz rushed into an emergency pyometra surgery to save a new patient named Little Little Kitty. Pyometra is a life-threatening infection of the uterus that can only be resolved by emergency surgery.
This is why it is so important to spay your cat or dog. This is Little Little Kitty’s story.
Warning: Graphic Images!
Every time a pet goes into heat, the ovaries secrete a hormone that causes the uterine lining to fill with blood, which suppresses the uterine immune function. This makes the uterus susceptible to infection.
Every time the pet goes into the heat, the uterine lining becomes thicker—and the risk for infection increases. Little Little Kitty is 10-years-old, so she has had many, many heat cycles.
When a uterine infection occurs, the entire uterus becomes engorged with pus. Little Little Kitty’s uterine infection was so long-standing and severe that pus had actually crystallized; you can see the cyst-type objects in the open uterus. This is what pyometra looks like.
Can you imagine how awful and painful Little Little Kitty felt? The raging infection would have put her close to death. Thank goodness an emergency spay surgery can usually cure pyometra. Still, surgery always carries risks—it’s better to spay your pet before her first heat cycle to prevent pyometra in the first place.
Little Little Kitty’s pet parents are good pet parents. We never judge; we are here to help. In fact, their only clue to her uterine infection was a bit of lethargy and vaginal discharge. Pets are strongly conditioned to hide their pain, even from their humans.
We are so happy Little Little Kitty’s pet parents rushed her in to see us. She went home after her surgery snuggled in the arms of her kitty dad. Two weeks later, we can report she is a fully healthy fur baby.
There are many great reasons to spay—or neuter—your pet. Read our Q&A on the real deal about spaying and neutering.