When Do Cats Go in Heat? – Things You Need to Know

When Do Cats Go in Heat

​Like any other female animals, cats do experience cycles that construct their bodies for fertilization and birth process. For a female human, this period is called “menstrual cycle”. For cats, it is known as estrus. When cats experience this cycle, they usually in heat and ready for mating. Kittens have the possibility to go in heat making it necessary to have them spayed as to avoid an early pregnancy and having the responsibility or raising new kittens at home.

two cats

Non-spayed cats go in heat as early as 4 months of age.The 1st heat cycle happens during puberty stage and that is between 6 to 10 months old. Although the cat may be in heat and ready for mating, it is not advisable for kittens to get pregnant in their 1st heat because at this stage, their body is still growing and early pregnancy could lead them to health problems in the future.

​Cat’s heat cycle happens with an interval of 15-21 days during the mating period. Mating lasts for about 6 to 9 months long.

​However, there are felines that experience heat all year round. Most of them are the short haired type. Furthermore, an artificial lightning can have an effect on the mating period. Not all the time heat cycle happens for 15-21 days especially for those that have medical issues that affect the situation.

Who Will Mate Your Feline?

​Cats can mate any male feline who are willing to do so whether it is their son, siblings or father. Cats are not very picky when it comes to mating.

How Will You Know Your Cat to be in Heat?

two cat outside

​Calling Out or Meowing – Meowing is one way to determine your cat is in heat. Sometimes they are calling as if they are in pain. Your cat will likely to sneak around the house vocalizing. The sound can be like a crying which can be loud and long sometimes making the owners awake at night. But if your cat vocalizing naturally, then it can’t be considered as a sign of being in heat.

  • ​Looking for Affection – Your feline friend may rub their body against you excessively to the point that you cannot avoid walking without stumbling on her. You will also notice that she may rub on the sofa, door, floor and anywhere. This is to indicate that she is ready for mating.
  • ​Lifting Up Her Tail – Her tail will rise up and the feet may appear to step to the floor.
  • ​Looking for Escape – Indoor felines that promptly wants to escape as long as there is an opportunity is a sign that she is in heat. But you also need to consider other situation like the changes in the behavior related to a new house pet or etc.
  • ​Excessive Genital Licking – In this period, the vulva may appear swollen and have a slight discharge. If the discharge is due to other health issues like UTI wherein the feline may have frequent trips to the litter box, it is best to consult this with your vet immediately.
  • ​Spraying Urine – Another common sign is that when your cat sprays urine that has a strong smell. Just like in meowing, they do this to attract male cats.
  • ​Defecating Anywhere – As long as the cat do not use her litter box and poops everywhere, there is a possibility that she is in heat. Again, this is another way to attract male cats for mating.
  • ​Discharge – Transparent discharge is noticeable that comes out from the vagina which later accompanied with blood. Don’t worry about this, it is a normal stage of heat process.
  • ​Loss of appetite – There are cases that they lose appetite completely.

What Can Owners Do When Felines are in Heat?

When Felines are in Heat

​Expect that your feline friend may go to a hormonal change during the heat. So here are the things you can do for them.

  • ​Provide love and affection. The most effective way is to let them calm by providing lots of attention. Brush their har, talk to them and allow them to sit on your lap.
  • Play with them. This will not only give her the attention she needs but also encourage a physical activeness.
  • Always clean their litter box​​​ as to avoid your feline friend to create a scent marking it.

Things to remember

  • ​Cats can become pregnant as early as their 1st heat cycle and they do not choose whom to mate.
  • Cats can easily go back to heat period after giving birth
  • Kittens can be spayed as early as 4 months old.

​If you don’t want your cat to be pregnant, the best way to prevent it is to have her spay. When sprayed, her uterus and ovaries are removed although she would still experience the signs of heat. But if you want her to get pregnant, then it’s best that you find her a mate. Have you experienced your feline friend has gone into heat? Share us your experience below!