Kitty Cone Head
May 9, 2010 12:50 PM   Subscribe

New Kitten Filter

Mr SuperMedusa & I just adopted a 7 week old Kitten yeah!!!!

Bellatrix LaCat

she was spayed 2 days ago and is currently residing in the cone of silence due to the stitches.

she hates the cone, of course. vet says it should stay on for a week!! we've read other conflicting advice on whether or not its worthwhile or even advantageous at all.

kitten experienced mefites, please share your take on whether it is better to keep my kitty in the cone or let her run free. thanks!
posted by supermedusa to Pets & Animals (16 answers total)
Neither of ours had a cone after getting spayed. But they didn't go after the stitches either. The vet told us that it's really not that big of a deal if they lick a bit.
posted by theichibun at 12:55 PM on May 9, 2010

Adorable! My cat wasn't that little when she was spayed, so it might not be the proper comparison, but she's never had to wear the cone of shame. Still, if you trust the vet, and if it's not bothering her, then I would probably follow the vet's advice.
posted by eldiem at 1:02 PM on May 9, 2010

I might ask a second vet's opinion (possibly there's a vet on MeFi who will answer). The other thing you might try is to buy a soft Elizabethan to replace the hard plastic one. She will probably be much more comfortable.
posted by tzikeh at 1:03 PM on May 9, 2010

I wouldn't be concerned about her licking the stitches, but rather about her hooking a tooth under 'em and ripping them out. Ouch! If the stitches look good at this point (two days post-surgery), though, take the cone off and see what she does. If she goes after the stitches in a fierce way, the cone should go back on. If she ignores them for the most part, set the kitty free!

She's a cutie!
posted by LOLAttorney2009 at 1:04 PM on May 9, 2010

Whoops - that link goes to Canada-don't know if you're there. Just google soft elizabethan cat and you'll find plenty. I'm sure sells them.
posted by tzikeh at 1:05 PM on May 9, 2010

Neither of my girls wore a cone after getting spayed and there were no problems with stitches. (The worst thing that happened was, when still groggy from the anesthesia, my littlest tried to jump up on the counter and missed. Drunk kitties are funny.)
posted by restless_nomad at 1:11 PM on May 9, 2010

I had a spayed adult cat that pulled her stitches out. I found her outside, dragging a loop of her guts around in the dirt. The vet managed to put Humpty Dumpty back together again, but I sure wish we'd used a cone!

I also had a kitten who lost one stitch and got an infection in that spot; that time it was easily fixable with some antibiotic cream the vet gave me. I guess two out of all the female cats I've had in my lifetime (10 or so) isn't bad, and the rest were fine, but there is a risk.

If I were you, I'd stick with the cone for at least a couple days, until the area seems mostly healed. Judging by your adorable photo, it doesn't seem to be bothering her too much!
posted by vorfeed at 1:13 PM on May 9, 2010

Well, if you want our anecdata, years ago my girly endured the perplexing cone for about that long (maybe a couple days less?) and though she hated it, she's on speaking terms with me by now. She loves me like a stalker, following me from room to room and sleeping on my belly every night. So. No hard feelings, as far as I can tell.
posted by ifjuly at 1:19 PM on May 9, 2010

I had an adult kitty fixed recently and had to keep the cone on because she went straight for the stitches if I took it off. I'd say try taking it off and see what she does. If you have to leave on, she'll get over it.
posted by Mavri at 1:28 PM on May 9, 2010

When my cat had surgery, the vet gave me some ointment to put on the stitches that was non-toxic, yet tasted nasty. It worked perfectly. However my cat was already an adult. I don't know if that kind of thing is available for kittens.
posted by expialidocious at 1:47 PM on May 9, 2010

great input all, thanks! I should clarify the kitty has surgical glue, not stitches, sorry for incorrect info...
posted by supermedusa at 1:50 PM on May 9, 2010

We got Bonus Cat neutered last fall, and he hated his cone. We compromised by only putting it on when we were out or asleep, and taking it off and keeping an eye on him whenever we were home. Of course, he tried to go for the stitches about every five minutes.

By day three or so, however, he managed to escape from the cone and hide it. We didn't find it for weeks.

The plastic cones with the little tie thing look really uncomfortable, and they're hard to secure, so a smart cat can often wiggle out of them. Definitely get one of the soft cones if you can; they will feel better and stay on better.
posted by Metroid Baby at 1:51 PM on May 9, 2010

Just to add to the stats: I've had lots of cats over 20+ years and none ever had the cone after being fixed.
posted by BlahLaLa at 2:14 PM on May 9, 2010

Does she go for the scar if the cone is taken off? If she's licking at it or otherwise irritating it, you should keep the cone on, at least when you're asleep or not with her. If she's ignoring it, you're probably safe.
posted by jeather at 5:10 PM on May 9, 2010

Our cat had a soft cone for over a month (she was chewing her fur off, bad kitty!). She wasn't thrilled, but she got over it, and was doing all her normal things with the cone on by the end. If your cat is just acting pissed instead of frantic, I would leave it on. Just make sure she can reach her water dish with the cone on.
posted by anaelith at 6:19 PM on May 9, 2010

Abigail didn't have a cone after her spaying. She did get an infection but that was taken care of with a shot of antibiotics.

Kaylee the dog had to have a cone when her knees went (but not when she was spayed - weird). She hated it until we found a clear collar. I believe her complaint was being unable to see her enemies sneaking up on her.

I don't know that a clear collar will be more acceptable to Bellatrix, but I think it's worth a try.
posted by deborah at 7:34 PM on May 9, 2010

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