As I sit here writing this I can feel the blood dripping down the side of my right hand and splashing the keyboard. I had my cat castrated this morning.

I decided that it was finally time to have my cat’s manhood taken. People have been telling me that if you don’t castrate a male cat he will eventually start spraying urine all over the walls of your house. With the weird smells that already permeate my life here I decided that that was something I defiantly did not need.

I had heard stories of past volunteers having their animals castrated and afterwards almost bleeding to death on the living room floors. Or how for cats the vet got a cardboard box, poked a hole in one side, stuck the soon to be gone body parts out the hole, and cut. I had been putting off the castration for the past couple months, knowing it wouldn’t be fun.

Last night I finally got up the courage and called the vet. He said he would be at my house at 7am and that the entire thing would cost the equivalent of 3$. I got off the phone 35 seconds later and thought, "Wow. That was really easy. This really won’t be a problem!" HA!

I made sure to be up extra early and eating my bowl of cornflakes (you would be surprised at how good cornflakes and freshly made condensed milk and water tastes) and drinking my overly strong cup of black coffee well before the time of cutting. At around 6:45am the bell rung and I opened the door to find a smiling middle age Togolese man standing at my door.

The first thing he said was, "I have been working with Americans for a long time and know they always like to be on time." Good thing number two.

He came in and we talked a few minutes about the volunteer I replaced and his dog, my garden, and finally caught sight of our victim casually walking out the cat size hole I cut in my screen door.

The vet looked around and said, "Do you have a second?" I was confused. Are we fighting a duel? Do I need a second to defend my honor? I looked confused and he continued, "To hold the cat." I confidently responded that this was my cat, he loved and trusted me, I could hold him by myself.

The vet shrugged, said ok, and pulled a little packet with a fresh razor blade from his pocket. I took the cat, laid him on the concrete floor of my patio, took his front two legs (that up until now have done nothing more violent towards me then bat at my moving toes) in my left hand and held his neck gently but firmly in my right hand. He was a little unsure, but, in the end he is a very trusting cat (he’d never had his freakin balls chopped off before!)

The vet took his back legs in one hand and carefully lowered the razor blade to the small soon to be empty package. With the first slice of the razor blade I saw my cat’s eyes bulge, heard the yelp that one would assume came with a male having his defining parts removed, and he began to fight.

At one point during the cutting I felt all five claws of one of his back paws dig into the top of my left hand. As I reacted to that attack I felt his head shimmy out of my right hand and teeth enter into my palm. I didn’t blink an eye, didn’t bat an eyelash. We were here to do some cutting. I don’t know how I got control again. The entire scene is a blur of blood and yelping at this point. He got out of our grip a second time and I felt multiple paws and teeth all at the same time digging into my exposed flesh.

I looked down at the opposite end (I had been focusing on the teeth wielding part) and saw the vet gingerly pull what looked like two small grapes attached to flesh colored cords from my cats nether regions.

It was over.

I tried to let go of the screaming animal but found he had latched onto my hand with teeth and nails. He finally understood that he was done and let go.

I was badly shaken (all the caffeine sure as heck didn’t help any). I went inside to find a sterile bandage to help stop the bleeding from my many injuries. When I came back I saw the vet pick up the lost cat parts, walk over to one of my flower beds, and bury them.

The vet tried to apologize for my wounds. In broken, very shaky French (I could hardly speak English at that point let alone anything else) I said, "It's ok. My cat is bleeding and suffering over there. I guess I can too… And I still have my balls."


Alec said...


That was so scary. I hope you are okay. You should really have the bite marks checked out as soon as possible. My mother's cat bit her once and she got a ridiculous infection that started spreading up her arm. It would have been fatal if it reached her heart.

Arjunax said...

Aaron -- that loving animal delivered his whole being up into the hands of a traitor, confident of his safety.
You report this betrayal without a shred of remorse or sentiment except for yourself.

What elements are you made of?

Anonymous said...

My God, what a cruel thing to do to a friend. I can't imagine the pain that cat suffered. Not all male cats spray, that torture might not have even been necessary. You casual attitude gives me the creeps.

DougF said...

I remember my grandfather using a similar technique on young piglets that were nearly ready to be weaned when I was a youth. I was always given the task of holding the piglet up for my grandfather, who would then 'operate'!

Reading your post, I'm now glad that piglets are not equipped by nature with claws, etc.

Jolanda said...

I know things maybe different over there... but I can't believe the vet didn't use any anesthetic or at least a sedative. Poor fluffy!

something to believe in said...

hello.fronz here ,your reason for the castration i am not shure about, but unless you plan to eat cats ,it is better to do it ,they can proliforate,quit quickly.this could be a good thing,but here in Canada we give the animal a sedetive which im shure you could have found throu natural or man made,even having the cat inhale hairspray ,would have helped,fronz

manuela gonçalves said...

It's very terrible the thing you've described.. but some coments are even worst...
I think you should get more information about cats, before had done that.. now it's too late... and certainly, should certified to do it the painless possible... but humans are used to USE AND ABUSE about everything... nature... animals... even other humans...
what a way to live...

Anonymous said...

I too am a North American living in a developing country. Things sure are different out here in the rest of the world! I loved the story and am amused at some of the caustic remarks towards you on the comments. You really have to be here to understand that this is how things are done in most of the world.

wonderful blog!

Madhu said...

Why did u guys not use any anasthesia? It would have been easier for both ur cat and you.

Anonymous said...

Wow, amazing story, amazing comments. Just goes to show that most people on the internet have never been to a third world county.

I hope most people don't think you can just walk down to the local store and get sedatives for their pet cat. Medicine is scarce enough as it is.

Anonymous said...

Hahaha, I can't believe people are getting upset over a story like this. I'm sure wherever you're living, the people there would sooner give sedatives, if there were any, to humans before cats. These people obviously have never left the american comforts of home.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for being honest. Especially in this judgemental world, where most people don't have the guts to be.
Keep being you. Your a great writer.
Thanks for allowing so many like myself, to read what you see and experience there.

william wray said...

Gripping story, brave of you to post it, but for a good writer you are foresight challenged. I can't believe you didn't have some notion of what your cat might resist his needed sex change. Not only would anyone with common sense know that the cat would bite the hell out of you, if I was the cat I would have rightly assumed you were killing me.
Trust from your cat? Would you go along with your mother cutting your sack off when you got your pubes or bite her hand? Even if you have no empathy for the cats pain when the "doctor" didn't sedate the cat, I'd have stopped right there to avoid pain for everyone. When you hurt an animal or human that much they never fully trust you again, that the saddest part of the story. This is so far out I wonder if it's even true.

Anonymous said...

One day, it was at night, when I fell off from bicycle & the petals hit me right there. If I ever felt the pain anywhere else, I did not notice it because that place was very painful. Thank God I was alone. But, I can tell you for sure that balls are very delicate.

Here, I wonder why you needed the cat if you did not need its balls. You must be old enough to notice male cats have balls. Don't you think it was unfair to the cat for you to cut off its balls? I don't think God was pleased to see you do that, but I am sure he saw it all.

Mahwidi Jonas said...

One day, it was at night, when I fell off from bicycle & the handle-bars hit me right there, including those twins. If I ever felt the pain anywhere else, I did not notice it because that place was very painful. Thank God I was alone. But, I can tell you for sure that balls are very delicate.

Here, I wonder why you needed the cat if you did not need its balls. You must be old enough to notice male cats have balls. Don't you think it was unfair to the cat for you to cut off its balls? I don't think God was pleased to see you do that, but I am sure he saw it all.

Maybe, you can at least be sorry what you did to the cat.

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