Franny is an award-winning freelance writer who has been writing about cats since 1997. In the northern hemisphere, this is generally between the months of March and September. Cornell University College Of Veterinary Medicine, 2020, Little, Susan E. Female Reproduction. The Cat Act 2011 states that cats that have reached 6 months of age must be sterilised by a veterinarian, unless the cat is exempt from sterilisation. If your female cat comes in to season before you have had a chance to have her desexed, keep her inside and separated from any entire male cats. A cat can only be exempt from sterilisation if a certificate is given by a veterinarian or the cat is owned by an approved breeder for breeding purposes. If you suspect your pet is sick, call your vet immediately. Many people decide to get their female cat desexed as they are concerned about her getting out when she is on heat. If she does manage to escape and mate, your veterinary health care team will be happy to provide advice on options available (in most situations sterilisation will still be an option) and they will most likely wish to test for FIV (feline AIDS) and FeLV (feline Leukaemia) if the male tom cat is unknown. ", The breeding season in cats is practically year-round, running as early as February, and as late as December, but in the western hemisphere, March through September is generally regarded as the breeding season.. So how do cats mate? Urine spraying on walls and other surfaces. There is also a risk of picking up one of the potentially fatal feline viruses (feline Leukaemia or feline AIDS). She will generally come back in to season approximately 8 weeks after the birth of the kittens (with a range of 1-21 weeks). 6 Ways to Tell If Your Female Cat Is in Heat. A female cat that's not spayed can usually begin to breed as soon as their heat cycles begin.   Female cats are not regularly “on heat”, in fact that can happen as few as twice a year or up to 6 or 7 times. Rubbing against or weaving between your legs and rolling around on the floor. This is just another term for a cat being in oestrus or being receptive to being mated and potentially becoming pregnant. If you are unsure if your cat is in season, your veterinary health care team will be happy to provide advice. Elsevier, doi:10.1016/b978-1-4377-0660-4.00040-5. How Many Litters Can a Cat Birth in One Year? There is no “mating season" per se. Breeding Season . Change in mannerisms - when you stroke your cat along her back she will lower her front half, raise her bottom in the air, start to tread up and down and move her tail from side to side. The quick cycles are why many vets recommend spaying pet cats unless they are specifically being used to breed., All of the above terms are correct in describing female cats' periods of receptiveness to mating, but we will refer to them as the more often-used "heat cycles. Cat breeding at this time of the year . Although, it should be noted that cats can come on heat and produce kittens at any time of the year if the situation is right. Cat Vital Signs: What Is Considered Normal? The cat does not mate. [1] “Compendium of Animal Reproduction” Intervet International 1995, Keep up to date - how to care for your pet, pet newsletter, competitions and more, ats that have reached 6 months of age must be sterilised, by a veterinarian, unless the cat is exempt from sterilisation. Cats are referred to as "polyestrous," which means that they will go into heat cycles periodically during their fertile years. These heat cycles may start as early as the fourth or fifth month of a kitten's life and will continue until she is either bred or spayed. She will come back in to season 1 day to 2 weeks later and this cycle may continue multiple times unless she is mated or the breeding season ends. Spaying And Neutering. Cat Mating Season: The Cats in heat become more restless and aggressive. With each litter being between one and eight kittens that can add up to a lot of kittens very quickly if you're not careful! 1195-1227. Heat cycles in cats last from several days to two weeks or longer and repeat every two to three weeks. Cats are known as a polyoestrus species. Not only is there a risk of her getting pregnant, but there is also a very high risk of her getting hit by a car or getting injured as her only focus is on finding a male to mate with. The penalty of non compliance is a fine of $5 000. In this situation she can show all the signs of being pregnant (gain weight, increase in appetite and even produce milk) but won’t actually have any kittens. Cat mating can be done at any time, but cats are more likely to be more drawn to mating based on daylight hours. Exactly when a cat starts coming on heat is determined by a number of factors including: the days becoming longer (ie Spring/ Summer), the cat’s weight, age, general health and their breed. You can see then, how a female cat may almost always seem to be in heat. Dr. Monica Tarantino is a small animal veterinarian based in the Charlotte, NC area with five years of general practitioner experience. In the southern hemisphere, that is more likely to be between September and March. Home; Pet Care Advice; As the weather starts to become a bit warmer and the days begin to lengthen, entire female cats start to come on call - this is also known as coming on heat or into season. Desexing or sterilisation is a surgical procedure that removes both the ovaries and the uterus in female cats (ovariohysterectomy), meaning that they are no longer able to come on heat and become pregnant. The cat mates, but does not become pregnant and has what is called a pseudo or “false” pregnancy. Oestrus lasts for 7 to 10 days and there are 3 possible outcomes: The signs of oestrus are mainly behavioural and can include: Some cats are known as 'silent callers' & may display none of the above signs. Are Cats Still Sexually Active After Spay-Neutering? She will return to being on heat approximately 4-6 weeks later. For health-related questions, always consult your veterinarian, as they have examined your pet, know the pet's health history, and can make the best recommendations for your pet. Although contrary to this some female cats can become aggressive towards their owners and other cats. Learning about your cat's reproductive cycle can help you plan for breeding purposes or just to ensure that you don't have more pets than you bargained for. Read our. These include preventing inflammation of the uterus (metritis), uterine infection (pyometra), ovarian cysts and tumours of the reproductive system. Rescue people dread "Kitten Season" because it means that in kill shelters, the new crop of kittens will eliminate any chances of adoption for older cats, including last year's kittens. As the weather starts to become a bit warmer and the days begin to lengthen, entire female cats start to come on call - this is also known as coming on heat or into season. Rabbits may have a reputation for fast breeding, but cats should share some of that fame. There's a lot you need to know to make things go smoothly with your new friend. Apart from being law and the prevention of unwanted kittens, desexing also has a number of medical benefits for your cat. This means they can come on heat multiple times in a calendar year (compared to dogs that are dioestrous and only come on heat twice per year). No one can say with any accuracy that heat cycles are painful to cats; however, from the calling (loud yowling) and other symptoms they exhibit, it would appear that they are very uncomfortable. With my cat, who is 10 and ‘complete’, its usually 4 or 5 times each year. Breeding Season. A cat in heat is usually pretty noticeable. The main goal of a female cat is to get attention after all, and with all the calling, it can be hard to miss. Increased attention to the genital region (licking). A cat can only be exempt from sterilisation if a certificate is given by a veterinarian or the cat is owned by an approved breeder for breeding purposes. If for no other reason, this alone is ample justification for the spaying and neutering of pet cats. Cat's can have two or three litters every year if not spayed. The Cat, 2012, pp. Many veterinarians now practice early spay and neuter for this reason. How Soon Can a Cat Go Into Heat After Giving Birth? Oestrus cycles begin when female cats reach puberty, which can be as early as 4 months right through to 10 months of age. The Spruce Pets uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Female cats will generally continue to come on heat until they are mated and become pregnant. The breeding season in cats is practically year-round, running as early as February, and as late as December, but in the western hemisphere, March through September is generally regarded as the breeding season. Dr. Tarantino is part of The Spruce Pets' veterinary review board. The p. enalty of non compliance is a fine of $5 000.