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What Does It Mean When A Cat Is In Heat

How To Help Your Cat When Shes In Heat

How do I know if My Cat is in Heat? Symptoms and What to do

If your cat has not been spayed, its important to accept that when shes in heat, her behaviour is natural. Keep your eyes peeled, and if your cats behaviour is causing trouble, speak to your vet about possible solutions.

Remember: if a female cat ventures outside when shes in heat, its highly likely that shell become pregnant.

When Can A Cat Get Pregnant During Heat

Whenever a cat is in heat they can get pregnant. A female cat can mate many times when she is in heat and with several different male cats. Cats are induced ovulators, meaning that the act of mating stimulates their ovaries to release eggs. It is therefore possible for a queen to have a litter in which the kittens have several different fathers!

What To Do If Your Cat Is Being In Heat

If your cat is in heat consistently, make an appointment with your veterinarian. He will perform a complete examination, including laboratory testing such as urinalysis, blood work, and biochemistry profile. This will give the veterinarian much needed information about the cats organ functionality and will check for various conditions.

Your veterinarian will also ask you questions about your cats heat cycle. He will want to know the precise age of the cat, if your cat has given birth to a litter, and whether your cat has had a false pregnancy. The veterinarian will want you to describe in detail your cats behaviors when in heat.

Once the laboratory results have come in, your veterinarian will take a close look at what could be going on with your cat. He may want to check for any ovarian abnormalities by performing specific tests such as radiography and an ultrasound. These tests will take a closer look at the ovaries and determine if your cat may possibly have a tumor or a cyst, both of which could cause persistent estrus.

If your cat has a cyst on her ovary or has a tumor, your veterinarian will explain to you in detail the treatment plan. He may also recommend, once treatment is complete, that you spay your cat in order to prevent her going into heat and thus, removing her chances of becoming pregnant.

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How Do You Know That Your Cat Is In Heat

Although cats dont bleed when theyre on heat, the signs are pretty clear:

  • Shes very affectionate . She rubs herself against you, the furniture and the
  • She meows a lot, both day and night. When you have a cat on heat, the most frequently asked question is what to do to stop this.
  • She tries to get your attention, rolling on the floor at your feet.
  • When you touch her, she arches her back, stretches out her front legs, and raises her tail.
  • Due to stress, her appetite may decrease.
  • She tries to get out into the street to look for a mate .
  • She may spray the house with urine, to leave a scent trail aimed at toms.

How Will I Know If My Cat Is In Heat

What Does It Mean When A Cat Goes Into Heat

Only sexually mature, un-neutered female cats can come into heat, and if they do, they will typically show some of the following behavioural changes:

  • Increased vocalisation cats in heat will become more vocal to attract males. Some may wail, howl or let out a mating call, which continues until they are either mated or their heat ends. .
  • The mating position this is when a female cat lies down with her elbows on the ground but her bottom in the air. Her tail may move from side to side to reveal her genital area
  • Affectionate and clingy cats in heat are usually extremely affectionate, rubbing around your legs, rolling on the floor, purring and not leaving your side
  • Rubbing against furniture cats in heat may start rubbing their face or hind quarter area on furniture in an attempt to leave their scent for male cats
  • Urine spraying some female cats may spray urine on to vertical surfaces to let male cats know they are in heat

Some of these behavioural changes can also be seen with other problems, so if you arent sure if your cat is in heat, it is best to talk to your local veterinary practice.

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Cat Panting Can Be A Sign Of A Heart Issue

Cats can have underlying heart issues, even at a young age. Cardiomyopathy is a common condition that can be genetic in cats and is more common in certain breeds.

According to the Cornell University School of Veterinary Medicine, the cat breeds that have been shown to be more genetically prone to cardiomyopathy include:

Kittens can be born with the condition and develop symptoms at some point in their lives. Senior cats can be more prone to developing heart problems as they age, especially secondary to hyperthyroidism.

If your cat is panting, especially if they are a senior cat, talk to your vet about possible heart issues.

Cats In Heat Make Creepy Calling And Meowing Sounds

The sound of a female cat in heat can be downright bone-chilling. As her urge to mate grows, the calls of a cat in heat become almost alarming, as if shes in pain. It can also make you crazy, because as her heat ramps up, the calling is going to get louder and more insistent, and could become almost constant.

If there werent tomcats at your doorstep before, there sure will be once your cat starts calling. Those cat in heat sounds are an indication that your cat is in full heat, or estrus.

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Do Cats In Head Bleed

You may be asking this because feline menstruation means that cats must ovulate. While it is true that cats are no exception, their system is a little different.

First, let’s explain what is ovulation. This is the time of release of the egg, determining the fertile days of the female. If the ovum is not fertilized, then in many species menstrual bleeding occurs. However, this does not happen in cats. With felines, the ovum is only released after fertilization has already occurred. This means after the cat has accepted being mounted and allowed for mating and insemination by the male.

So, in respect of not producing menstrual blood, do cats get their period when in heat? The answer is no. Some mammals, such a dogs, will have a period in that they bleed during their menstrual cycle. Due to the absence of ovulation until after mating in cats, the egg is not rejected and should not exhibit bleeding. Although uncommon, up to 30% of cats may have spontaneous ovulations without any sexual stimulation.

How Often Does A Cat Go Into Heat

Female Cats and their Heat Cycle

When a cat is in heat, the cycle can last anywhere from 1 to 20 days. While the cycle length is pretty standard, the frequency can be a bit harder to pin down.

Cats are polyestrous, which means they go into heat multiple times per yearand can become pregnant numerous times a year. The time between cycles can last anywhere between a few days to a few weeks. So if your cat had an unplanned pregnancy, watch out because she can go into heat in as little as two weeks after giving birth to her litter.

Unlike human females, who have a regular reproductive cycle throughout the year, a cats reproductive cycle changes with the seasons. The hormonal cycle of free-roaming cats is triggered by sunlightwhich explains why kitten season is typically May to June. Youll notice female cats beginning their cycles of heat in near February with the lengthening of days. Theyll be less likely to go into heat when the days become shorter and darker in the fall.

But sunlight isnt the only cause for a domestic cat to go into heat. The hormonal cycle of an indoor cat can be triggered by artificial lighting, so they can go into heat at any time of the year, seemingly without warning.

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How Can I Prevent My Cat From Becoming Pregnant

The best way to prevent your cat from becoming pregnant is to have her surgically sterilized before she has her first estrous cycle. Since it can be difficult to predict when this first cycle will occur, most veterinarians recommend performing an ovariohysterectomy when the cat reaches six months of age.

Why Being In Heat Occurs In Cats

A continuous secretion of estrogen is what causes persistent estrus. This can be caused by two different conditions. Persistent estrus in cats occurs because of:

Ovarian Cysts

Ovarian cysts are sacs of fluid or substance that can form within the ovary or on the ovary. There are several types of ovarian cysts, and most are benign. A cat with cysts that are causing issues will typically undergo surgery.

Ovarian Tumor

An ovarian tumor secretes more estrogen than normal. A common tumor of the ovary is the granulosa cell tumor. Malignant tumors should be removed as there is risk of metastasis.

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Why Do Cats Like Hot Weather: 5 Interesting Facts About Feline Heat Tolerance

Cats seem to be able to tolerate heat in a way that their humans often cannot. Even as you are running indoors for the air conditioning and a cool drink, your cat is laying flat out on hot asphalt soaking up the rays.

What on earth is going on?

There are some key reasons why cats are better able to tolerate heat than most people. But this is not to say that all cat breeds tolerate heat equally well, either. It is still important to protect your cat when it is very hot outside!

In this article, learn why most cats like hot weather and some safety tips to make sure it doesnt get too hot for your outdoor cat.

Is Cat Panting Normal

What Does it Mean When a Cat is in Heat?âBy Dr. Leslie Brooks

Heat exchange in cats is not the same as humans. Cats do not sweat through their pores that are all over their bodies. Instead, they experience minor sweating through the pads on the bottom of their paws.

However, cats need to pant to release heat from their bodies because they cant sweat enough. That being said, it is not that common to see a cat walking around panting like a dog.

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Can I Spay My Cat While She Is In Heat

Yes, you can have your cat spayed while she is in heat, but many vets will advise waiting until her heat cycle is over.

During a cats heat cycle, her reproductive organs become engorged with blood. This makes spaying a more time-consuming operation, and depending on the facility, may cost more than a spay done when a cat is not in heat.

If your number one priority is to not have a pregnant cat, you should get your cat spayed as soon as possible, even if she is in heat.

What Are The Signs Of Estrus

The most notable signs of estrus in cats are behavioral. Most cats become very affectionate, even demanding they persistently rub against their owners , constantly wanting attention. They roll on the floor more often. When stroked along the back or spine, they raise their rear quarters into the air and tread with the back legs. They also become very vocal. These behavior changes often become annoying to owners, and sometimes owners think their cat has some unusual illness.

“The most notable signs of estrus in cats are behavioral.”

Some female cats will urinate more frequently or may even spray urine on vertical objects when they are in heat. The urine contains both pheromones and hormones, both of which act as signals of her reproductive status to other cats. This is the reason that queens in heat attract Tomcats . In some cases, this may be the first indication that a young cat has reached puberty. Tomcats that have never been seen before in your yard or neighborhood will appear. They may spray urine on the house to mark the territory as theirs or may even attempt to enter the house to mate with the female.

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What Is A Heat Cycle For A Cat

An unspayed female cat is called a queen and has reproductive organs that include a uterus and ovaries. These reproductive organs go through a normal cycle, called an estrous or more commonly a heat cycle, that allows reproduction to occur. During a heat cycle in most mammals, an egg is released from the ovaries prior to breeding and this is called ovulation. But since cats are induced ovulators they don’t release eggs during estrous until they breed. They do, however, still have hormonal fluctuations, along with some blood vessel engorgement, during a heat cycle that means their body is telling them it’s time to breed.

Is Your Cat In Heat Heres What You Need To Know

Acupressure for a cat in heat. How to deal with your cat in heat.

Cat in heat? Uh oh! Follow our tips to be prepared for your cat’s mating behavior and know what you can do to best help your feline friend.

A few years ago, I had the pleasure of raising two adorable baby kittens from infancy we fed them with a bottle and helped them grow into big healthy, teenage cats. But at some point, my young cats started acting funny and I soon realized it was because they had reached the age of sexual maturity. Hello, cat in heat! But what to do when you are presented with this funny behavior, and the new mating rituals of your feline furry friend? How do you recognize the signs of a cat in heat?And how to best handle a cat in heat ? Well cover all that and more, in the article below. Plus, discover the best way to keep track of your cat at all times.

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Differences In Heat Cycles By Breed

The breed of your cat can have a huge effect on her heat cycle.

Factors that vary by breed include the age of sexual maturity and the length of the breeding season.

To understand your cats heat cycle, its important to consider her breed.

Here are a few examples of different breeds unique heat cycles.

How Can You Prevent A Cat From Going Into Heat

The only way to prevent the heat cycle from repeating over and over again, along with the distress it causes both you and your pet, is to have your female cat spayed. It is a myth that cats should be allowed to go through one heat cycle or even to have one litter before spaying. Early spaying is widely regarded as the most ethical course for pet owners to take, in light of the millions of animals who are euthanized at pet shelters each year. Its simply irresponsible to bring another litter of kittens into the world when there are already too few homes for existing animals.

Spaying is considered major surgery because it involves entering the abdomen to remove both ovaries and the uterus, yet the procedure is safe and routine when performed by a qualified vet. And although its possible to perform the surgery at any time of the estrous cycle, most veterinarians decline to spay cats in heat because the engorged blood vessels in the reproductive organs create an increased risk of heavy bleeding.

Thumbnail: Photography by karamysh / Shutterstock.

This piece was originally published in 2012.

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How Long Are Cats In Heat

So, how long are cats in heat? Typically, the estrous phase will last between a week and 10 days. However, if your cat isnt able to mate and become pregnant, shell very likely go into heat again sometime within the next three weeks. Some cats who arent allowed to breed may seem to be more or less constantly in heat.

What Exactly Is Caterwauling

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Caterwauling is a very interesting word that may not be familiar to some people. The origin of caterwaul comes from the Middle Dutch term cater which means tomcat and the Middle English term waul, which means to yowl.

A caterwaul is usually a very dramatic and drawn out noise that is very unpleasant to most people as you can see in the video below.

A caterwaul is different from a meow or a purr. It is a shrill and often loud vocalization made by a cat. Some cats sound like they are crying out in pain.

A caterwaul is usually a very dramatic and drawn out noise that is very unpleasant to most people. When the noise is repeated over and over again in a short period of time, it is referred to as caterwauling.

Given the obnoxious and almost painful sound of a caterwaul, it is usually a very successful way for a cat to be noticed.

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The Stages Of A Cats Heat Cycle

According to Dr. Brenda Griffin, DVM, of the Scott-Ritchey Research Center, vets divide a cats hormonal cycle into five stages:

  • Proestrus. Female cats will begin attracting the neighbor tomcats with vocalization and body language cues like rubbing against people, objects, and other cats. Shell also stretch, expose her belly, and stick her hindquarters in the air. During the twelve hours to three days of this phase, shell attract but turn down her male suitors.
  • Estrus. For the next one to twenty-one days , female cats will experience a surge of the hormone estradiol. Shell have some discharge and experience an enlarging of her genitals, but that will typically go unnoticed by pet parents. Your cat may spray and mark during estrus, but this behavior isnt common. When shes approached by a tomcat , shell crouch with her hindquarters in the air.
  • Interestrus. If a cat didnt breed during the estrus phase, shell enter the interestus phase. This is the period of hormonal rest and lowering of estradiol before beginning a new heat cycle. The average rest between heat cycles is one to three weeks.
  • Diestrus. If a female was impregnated during the estrus phase, then diestrus follows. The queen will start producing more hormones, like progesterone. Your female cat wont continue signs of breeding like rolling around or putting her hindquarters in the air.
  • iStock/bombermoon


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