“When do cats go in heat?” It is a familiar question thrown around by cat lovers. You might want to breed your cat or cope with her hormonal changes. Whatever the case maybe, it’s a must for any cat lover to know when their cats are ready for mating.
When do cats go in heat?
The age during which a cat enters heat or “estrus” cycle would depend on various factors like breed and environment.
For example, Siamese cats can enter puberty as early as four months of age. Other breeds, though, such as Persian cats won’t be sexually mature until their 10th month.
Their environment can also have an effect on their sexual maturity. Outdoor pets can reach maturity earlier than indoor cats.
Kittens typically go through two to three heat cycles in a year. This explains why cat mating season starts in spring and lasts until autumn. In warm climates, cats can go through up to four cycles in a year.
The heat cycle can last from 10 to 14 days. During this period, your cat will aggressively look for a partner.
Who will mate with your cat?
Cats will mate with any willing tomcat—whether it is their father, son, or sibling. Cats are not picky when it comes to mating.
Read more: How Do Cats Mate – Things You Might Not Know
What are the signs of a cat going in heat?
How would you know that your cat is in heat? You should look out for these tell-tale signs:
1. Increased Affection
Perhaps the first change in behavior that you will notice is your kitten becoming very affectionate. It is possible that she would purr loudly to catch your attention, or rub up her body against your ankles.
2. Aggressive Behaviour
Aside from being extra affectionate with you, your cat will also exhibit aggressive behavior. You would notice her rubbing herself against a piece of furniture, or even against you.
Don’t worry as this is very normal. She’s just attempting to leave her scent around to attract males for mating.
You may also catch her licking her genital region.
Related to your cat’s aggressive behavior would be her attempts to get out of your house. Escaping to the outdoors would enable her to meet male cats. This desire to escape will escalate when she hears male cats howling.
3. Excessive Howling
Most females in heat will excessively howl. Your kitten who’s ready for mating will call out loudly for potential mates, even when it is late at night. This can be very irritating, but would continue until she mates successfully or her heat subsides.
4. Assume A Mating Position
Your cat in heat will also habitually assume the mating position. She will place her head down, bend her forelegs, and then raise her hindquarters and tail. Doing so would make her vulva accessible for any male cat.
5. Spraying Urine
This is another very common sign of a cat who’s in heat. Female cats are notorious for spraying strong smelling urine. Similar to yowling, they do this so that they can attract potential mates.
6. Defecating Everywhere
A kitten who doesn’t use her litter box and defecates everywhere may also be in heat. Again, this inappropriate behavior is another way for female cats to entice willing males to mate with her.
7. Transparent Discharge
You may even notice a slight mucous discharge from her vagina. At times, this comes with a small amount of blood. Again, don’t worry as this is just another normal sign of your cat going into heat.
What To Do When A Cat Goes In Heat?
As you can see, your cat would go through a hormonal turmoil when she is in heat. So how can you soothe a cat who’s in the estrus cycle? Here are some tips to consider:
1. Give her enough attention. Perhaps the most effective and easiest way to calm a cat who’s in heat is to provide her with enough attention. Talk to her, brush her coat, or allow her to sit in your lap.
2. Play with her. Doing so will not only give her the attention but also allow her to be more physically active.
3. Keep her litter box mess-free. Keeping your cat’s litter box clean would discourage her from scent marking it.
If you don’t want your cat to get pregnant, then the best way to do so is to spay her.
This would mean having her uterus and ovaries removed. She would still show signs of being in heat, though. You can spay a kitten who’s at least four months old, or by the time she starts looking for a mate.
Now that you know when cats go in heat, you should have an idea of what you would do by the time your kitten reaches or enters that stage.
If you want her to be pregnant, then you should let her find a mate. Can’t find one for her? Then try to soothe her by following our tips above.
And if you don’t want any more kittens, then you must have her spayed.
Last updated on February 20th, 2019