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I Think My Cat is In Heat, What Do I Do?

Updated on September 2, 2009

Cat's Heat Cycle

 If you have an un-spayed cat, whether because you haven't gotten around to having her spayed or because you don't believe it spaying female animals or whatever the reason, you should be prepared for the cat to go into heat.

Usually a cat will come into her first season between 4 and 10 months old. That is a pretty lengthy time span, which is why if you don't want to deal with the cat going into heat, you should consider spaying the cat as soon as your vet recommends.

A cat's normal heat cycle lasts between 7 to 10 days, and occurs every 2 to 3 weeks.

If you do not spay your cat and you do not breed her, there is a high risk that the female cat will develop cancer in her reproductive organs or she can develop pyometra, which is a fatal infection in the uterus. So, needless to say if you do not want to breed your cat, then it's highly suggested that you spay the cat by at least 6 months old.

Signs of a Cat in Heat

 Any or all of the below signs may indicate that your cat is in heat.

  • More affectionate.
  • Rolls around on the floor more than usual.
  • Carries tail to one side.
  • Very vocal, meowing a lot, with a more piercing tone.
  • Points bum in the air with head and front half of the body on the ground.
  • Licking vulva area.
  • Rubs face against you or furniture more than usual.
  • If an inside cat, she may try desperately to escape and run outside.

Precautions to Consider When Your Cat is In Heat

If your cat is in heat, you want to keep her away from doors, windows, and any un-neutered male cats.

It may be a good idea to leave the cat in a room towards the middle of the home, such as a bathroom or bedroom. You should also consider a tiled room for easy cleanup for messes.

You want to be careful of letting your cat escape to mate with a male. Aggressive males, diseases, and unwanted litters are potential problems that you may encounter if you do not spay your cat.

Reasons to Spay Your Cat

  • Prevent unwanted pregnancy- 1 cat can have 3 litters a year with at least 6 kittens in each litter.
  • Prevent death by complications of pregnancy.
  • Prevent wound and infections caused by wounds from aggressive males.
  • Avoid repeated heat cycles.
  • Keep your cat calmer.
  • Statistically fewer health problems, to include ovarian cysts, uterine infections, and cancer.
  • Avoid your cat trying to escape, which can potentially prevent your cat from getting hit by traffic or harmed by another animal while outside.

Disclaimer: Please be aware that the advice in this article should in no way replace that of a licensed veterinarian. If you have any concerns, you should consult a veterinarian.


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    • profile image


      7 years ago

      my just went in to heat today and i also have a male cat who has not been neutered and i want kittens but my male cat hasn't done anything to my female cat why is that

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      I thought I heard a dove or pigeon in my house. My cat has been "kooing" around and rubbing up on anything. I have an appointment for her to get spayed. Thank you so much for the information.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      my himalayan cat just went into heat last night was the 1st time i heard that horrid yowl and its been going on all day long she has every one of these signs but im not sure if she is still because shes a year and 4months she might be a late bloomer though im gettin her sprayed as soon as i get my paycheck im so sad thoo she is also my baby and i hate seeing her like this :(

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      so i have a cat and she's been in heat for 2 days and recently today my mom let her out to go to the bathroom And now she hasn't returned i'm so depressed she's my baby what can i do she is my beautiful fluffy loveable persian cat i love her so much please HELP!

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      like candace,my cat is showing all the signs of heat but she is not meowing.her back two nipples are extremely large, but none of the others are. i have no idea if i should be worried, or if she is pregenant. HELP!!!

    • profile image

      care bear 

      8 years ago

      my daughters cat Oreo goes into heat every 2 weeks. I've never known a cat to do that so frequently.She is very vocal & extremely loud.We want to have her spayed I'm just unsure now that she is almost 6 years old is it still safe?

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      i have a female British Bombay shes 10 months old and acts like shes in heat but shes not meowing at all should i be worried?

    • Whitney05 profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from Georgia

      If your female is not spayed and the male is not neutered, you'll want to consider it. If you truly adopted them, they're already altered. Otherwise, I'd consider it.

      It is possible that the male is tryign to assert dominance over the female.

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Well about 1 week and 3 days ago, my boyfriend and I adopted another cat--this time a male cat, his name is Frosty. Frosty and Storm did not get along at first. Storm would hiss at him and he would run away. Now they can stand to be in the same room, on the same couch, etc. They are both 1 years old, Frosty is twice the size of Storm--he is 8

      lbs and she is maybe 5 lbs (giving her the benefit of the doubt), but she is really petite. 5 days after we adopted Frosty I realized something was not right with him (he had eye discharge, coughing, nasal congestion, crying in the middle of the night)--took him back to the vet last Friday afternoon--he has a severe upper respiratory infection. So

      they gave me medicine to give him twice a day for 10 days--Clavamox...??? Well a couple days ago I noticed him being more outgoing, more lively, he is starting to act like a cat. I believe he is definitely getting better. He loves to cuddle with us, sleep with us, he in general is a really fun loving cat.

      Yesterday, my boyfriend was off of work sick, and I get a phone call that Frosty (the male) is trying to mate with Storm (the female). When I arrived home, to my own eyes I seen him getting in back of her and is trying to mount her but she wants nothing to do with it. She hisses at him and they bite each other. He will not leave her alone at all--he follows her and constantly tries to mate with her. He is

      neutered and she is spayed, so they can't have babies--which is a good

      thing. But now I am worried they are going to hurt each other. Am I

      overreacting, will they really do some damage to each other? I am more

      worried about Storm since she is a petite cat, and he is big compared to

      her. Today before work, I put him in the "cat bedroom"--yes they have

      their own room :) I put his food, water and litterbox in there just so

      I do not come home to any injured cats. Now they can not stand to be in

      the same room again--kinda like how it was when we brought him home.

      Please help me understand all this, because I am deathly afraid to leave

      them alone while we are at work. Am I just being paranoid? I appreciate

      any input you may have on this entire situation. Its like I fixed one

      problem, but now I have another on my hands. Any advice would be great

      to hear. Thanks for taking the time to help. Talk soon.

    • Whitney05 profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from Georgia

      Yes, I've seen 4 month old kittens pregnant. We had to have the pregnancy terminated bc having the kittens would have killed her; it broke the lady's heart to do it because the kittens were almost at full term. (It wasn't with my family, but a cat that was at the shelter I used to volunteer with.)

    • alexadry profile image

      Adrienne Janet Farricelli 

      9 years ago from USA

      Happy to see you posted that kittens may go in heat as early as four months. At the vet's office we used to claim six months as average, and that was usually the norm, but then after moving to Arizona (I guess the more light may have a stronger influence on hormones) I have seen kittens as early as four-five months going into heat.

    • RNMSN profile image

      Barbara Bethard 

      9 years ago from Tucson, Az

      hello Whitney I agree with RooBee!! A very well written article!! :)

    • Stacie L profile image

      Stacie L 

      9 years ago

      when my cat was in heat, she would take flying leaps off the bed and onto the drapes!! That was more than 5 feet. This went on for hours while i was trying to sleep....soon after she was spaded(sp?) ;(

      that was 25 years ago and I can still see her doing that! LOL

    • mayhmong profile image


      9 years ago from North Carolina

      Yep, my kitty Jasmine went in heat and drove all of us insane! I didn't expect her to go in heat that early?! I finally had her fix and she's more calm now.

    • Whitney05 profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from Georgia

      Thanks RooBee

      ethel, it is very odd your vet said to let the dog go through a first heat. All research I have found to include what a few different vets have told me that by letting the dog go through even one heat but not the second, you're at an 8% risk of developing breasts tumors. (

      privateeye, that is true. thanks.

    • privateye2500 profile image


      9 years ago from Canada, USA, London

      Also they rub their butts on the floor or ground a lot in my experience!

      There is also some blood.

    • ethel smith profile image

      Ethel Smith 

      9 years ago from Kingston-Upon-Hull

      One of my current dogs is female. A first for us. She is now spyaed but had one season first as per vet's advice.

    • RooBee profile image

      Arby Bourne 

      9 years ago from USA

      I don't have a cat, and still had to keep reading simply due to the quality! What great info, and presented so nicely.


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