How Long Are Cats in Heat? How Can You Prevent It?

How long are cats in heat? If you want to know everything about a cat in heat you are on the right site. We will answer the most common questions and give you all the useful tips.

Get everything you need to know about the heat period in cats, from its inception to its duration to the behaviours to recognize it.

how long are cats in heat

In this article, we will see, therefore, when heat occurs in cats, how it is possible to recognize it and how long it lasts. Let’s begin about How long are cats in heat.


When Does the Cat Go Into Heat?

Normally, cats go into heat for the first time around 6 months. This time limit, however, can vary from cat to cat. There are cases where the animal reaches sexual maturity at the fourth month and others where the first heat reaches about twelve months of life. The reproductive cycle of cats is called polyestral and this means that, unlike dogs, they go into heat several times during the year.

This usually occurs in the spring and early autumn and lasts for 7 to 10 days. However, if the cat does not become pregnant during the fertile period, then the heat will return after about 3 weeks.

This also depends on the lifestyle of the cat. Cats used to live indoors can have a defined ” prolonged ” heat, while those who live outside have paused and this is how long are cats in heat.

The Phases of the Heat of the Cat

The answer to this question on How long are cats in heat becomes more difficult in the case of the heat of the female. In their case, in fact, this period, which unlike the male specimens is much more intense since they are preparing to be fertilized on How long are cats in heat and is divided into three phases.

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  • Proestro: The days before estrus (the actual heat) during which the reproductive organs begin to prepare to receive the male and welcome the puppies in the belly. Days that are characterized by a sweet and nervous attitude of the female at the same time.
  • Estro: 5 days after proestrus, during which the cat is ready for mating, spending her days complaining, crying and rubbing on the floor.
  • Diestro and anestro: Days in which, if the cat has not mated, it will end up relaxing and return to normal.

Symptoms of a Cat in Heat

Owners of a female cat will quickly notice if their kitty has gone into heat. The signals that it reveals at the level of behaviour and also of a physical nature are, in fact, unequivocal.

Meowing: when the cat comes into heat, it begins to vocalize to attract the attention of any male cat. The meows of heat are different from what the cat normally emits. They are much more acute and insistent and the animal tends to meow especially in the early hours of the day or in the evening.

Urine Splashes: As with all other species, urine is a substance that is used by both dogs and cats to mark territory. Usually, however, all this is a prerogative of the male specimens. The splashes of urine become one of the symptoms of the cat in heat because it releases it to attract the male cat. This signal becomes particularly difficult to manage if the cat lives indoors and no longer follows the “litter box rule”, urinating against furniture and walls.

The Continuous Search for Attention: Especially in the days before the heat, the cats are very affectionate, always looking for cuddles. It can happen that they purr even when they are not close to their human. This behaviour can change when they actually go into heat making them more aggressive.

The Cat Rubs Itself on the Floor: when it is not pampered, the cat tends to rub itself against any surface in the house, especially against the floor. Rubbing and rolling on the ground serves the cat both to show her genitals – and therefore her propensity to mate – and to release the pheromones that attract males onto the floor.

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Mating Positions: Particularly when stroking or brushing her, the cat tends to assume typical mating positions, such as head down and back of body raised, including the tail.

Loss of appetite: finally, just like according to the “stereotypes” of love, the female cat almost completely loses the sense of appetite during the heat.

How to Calm a Cat in Heat

Whether you want to mate your cat or, instead, you intend to resort to sterilization. It is necessary that she experiences at least a heat, which, as we have already anticipated, marks the beginning of her sexual maturity. For this reason on How long are cats in heat, every cat owner needs to know what to do and how to calm the symptoms of heat as much as possible.

How to Calm a Cat in Heat

Distract Her with Play: The days of heat are undoubtedly a source of physical and psychological stress for the cat. Try to distract your cat by cuddling, brushing and playing with her.

Keep the Litter Clean: It has been found that during the heat period, cats tend to be less clean and not to worry about their personal hygiene. Cleaning the litter box more often can entice them to use it rather than marking the territory of the house by urinating. If all this happens, it is essential not to clean the surfaces with bleach. In fact, the ammonia contained in it is also present in the urine and could push the cat even more to dirty at that point.

Provide Something Warm to Sit on: This solution is not true for all cats, but many owners have found it useful. It consists of placing a wet towel in hot water or a cushion to be heated comfortably in the microwave oven on which the cat can sit and lie down. It has been noted on How long are cats in heat and how the heat helps the animal to calm down.

Sterilization: Pros and Cons

Heat is certainly a difficult phase for both the female cat and its owner. Especially on How long are cats in heat is when you want to mate your cat and have her kittens, many resorts to neutering. This operation is carried out by the veterinarian and takes the technical name of oophorectomy. The operation is not complicated, it lasts about an hour and has no consequences on the animal other than that which will no longer be able to reproduce. Recovery times can range from three to five days: after this time, your cat will be the same again.

After neutering, adequate nutrition is recommended for neutered cats, based on specific foods low in calories. In doing so, the animals will not run the risk of becoming overweight and you have know How long are cats in heat. Know more about cats on CatsBuz website.

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