A piece of a stitch sticking out after cat spaying??

by Ashley
(Reading, PA)

I took my female kitten to get fixed June 24th and it is now five weeks later. I followed the directions the vet gave me, kept her e-collar on her for 7 days, and tried to keep her from running around, although it was VERY hard considering her brother and her play ALL the time. Her incision was a straight line and at the bottom of it (closer to her behind) it had a little sack of skin and looked bunched up at the bottom. About two weeks after she was spayed, I noticed a bit of clear liquid coming out of that bunched up area. It wasn't pus, had no color, and wasn't even enough to blot with a q-tip. It just made a very small area around the incision moist.

It went away after a few days and then about a week ago, I noticed a clear string attached from one end of the incision and looped over to the other. Called the vet, was told to just monitor it.

One side came off, but the other side is still hanging on. I didn't want to cut it off or tug on it, but the vet still tells me it's okay. She hasn't been acting unusual. She is still just as active as ever, eating, peeing, pooping, sleeping the same amount she was before. I'm just curious about what to do with this string because I'm pretty sure it was from an internal stitch because they told us they used dissolving stitches on the outside. It's weird that it came out a month after spaying because the incision looked healed before then.

Any suggestions what I should do about this? Is it okay to cut it off? Thank you!

Dear Ashley,

I would recommend just clipping the string of the stitch shorter. I wouldn’t suggest trying to remove it or even to go down to the skin, but by trimming the string of the stitch shorter, your cat is less likely to start bothering it or tugging at it. The stitch will dissolve over time.

If you really aren’t comfortable trimming the stitch, you could and should bring your cat to the vet to have your veterinarian trim or remove it. Honestly, I am surprised that your veterinarian didn’t have you come back in when you reported your concerns in the first place, but nevertheless, having part of a stitch left behind from your cat’s surgery is really of no consequence to the cat and can really be left alone completely, trimmed shorter, or removed by the veterinarian.

All the best,
Dr. Neely

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