Do cats have periods? What to anticipate when a cat is in heat

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Wondering “Do cats have periods?” It is a natural thing to ask, especially in case you’re the first-time owner of a female cat and are not really sure about that specific aspect of cat biology.

Thankfully we’re here to let you know the whole lot it’s good to know concerning the feline equivalent of periods, in addition to explaining what happens to female cats during puberty, and helping you to grasp what to do once they are in estrus and the way you possibly can make things easier for each them and yourself. 

Discover all about your feline friend’s monthly cycle, the best way to spot when your cat is in heat, discover why your cat is bleeding and what to do.

Do female cats undergo periods?  

While cats shouldn’t have monthly periods like female humans, they do experience something similar once they hit puberty. Menstruation in humans happens on average once every 28 days when women bleed for 2 to seven days as the liner of the uterus sheds. 

In cats, as an alternative of shedding the liner of the womb by bleeding, their bodies reabsorb it so that they rarely bleed. As an alternative of periods, this known as ‘estrus’ or being ‘in heat’. 

Cats are polyestrous breeders, which suggests they undergo estrus several times a 12 months –  as much as every two to a few weeks, for seven days on average (although it could vary between two and 19 days). 

A female kitten will experience being in heat for the primary time between 4 and 6 months of age. She’s going to then proceed this cycle until she is spayed (when the ovaries and uterus are removed to stop pregnancy) or falls pregnant.  

A cat by a fence with its tail in the air

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Do cats bleed when in heat? 

Even though it is just not common, cats can bleed when in heat. It’s possible you’ll discover a small amount of blood of their bed or where they’ve been lying. In case your cat bleeds, all the time watch the remainder of their behavior and check in along with your vet to be certain there isn’t any other underlying health issue.  

Signs your cat is in heat
 

Unlike when a human is on their period, when a cat is in heat they do infrequently bleed although they might spot barely. Nevertheless, you possibly can still tell when their cycle has began as their behavior will change. 

Signs your cat is in heat may include:

  • Becoming more vocal. In case your cat is making strange vocalizations reminiscent of howling or yelping this could possibly be an indication that they’re in heat as that is their try and make mating calls as their body prepares to mate and reproduce.  
  • Rolling around. Moggies may turn out to be more restless during estrus, rolling around as a consequence of the hormones of their body. It’s possible you’ll find they lose their appetite and begin grooming themselves more as their genitals swell up. They could crawl low to the bottom or try to flee outside looking for a mate. 
  • Wanting more attention. It’s possible you’ll notice your kitten becomes more affectionate in heat, rubbing up against you and the furniture, lifting their butt within the air with their tail to the side and attempting to spread their scent in preparation for mating. 
  • Spraying urine. As your cat’s body readies itself for mating, they might also begin to spread their scent and mark their territory by spraying urine.  

A cat lying on a carpet

(Image credit: Getty Images)

What to do when your cat is in heat

There are several ways you can assist calm your cat down and make the perfect of a difficult time once they’re in heat:  

Stop them from mating

In case your kitty is unspayed you almost actually don’t want them falling pregnant so be sure they’re not near male cats that they’ll mate with. This will prove tricky, because the presence of a female cat in heat is for certain to draw all of the local tom cats, so chances are you’ll have to keep your cat inside for the duration (or at the least try to maintain an in depth eye on her when she’s out).

Keep them warm

Similar to women on their period, a heat pack, warm towel or electric blanket can assist comfort and soothe your kitty whose hormones are all over. Our guide to the perfect heated pet beds can make it easier to discover a warm, soothing spot in your cat.

Give them catnip

While catnip’s best known for sending cats right into a feline frenzy, for a lot of cats catnip can have a strong calming influence, especially if they don’t seem to be quite feeling themselves. Treat your cat to top-of-the-line catnip toys to see if that helps, or alternatively you possibly can make some soothing catnip tea.

Use cat pheromones

Pheromones (the chemicals that cats produce when in heat) can assist keep your cat’s stress and anxiety at bay. The preferred option is Feliway, which is out there as a diffuser and in addition as a sprig, nevertheless chances are you’ll also need to try a chilled cat collar.

Ensure their litter box is clean

Obviously it’s best to all the time keep your cat’s litter box as clean as possible, but this is especially vital when your cat’s in estrus. This can encourage them to mark their territory there, reasonably than subject you to the horror of your cat spraying in your furniture or carpets.  

Entertain them

Being in heat cat make your cat feel confused, unsettled and grumpy, but you possibly can still try to boost her spirits with a very good game. So keep your cat distracted by twiddling with her, or giving her a lot of recent toys to interact with. 

Why is my cat bleeding?  

In case your cat is bleeding it’s vital to first check where they’re bleeding from. When your cat is in heat they might spot, but it surely’s still vital to examine in along with your vet to be certain of the explanation. 

If there’s blood of their urine or blood of their stool or around their genitals they might have a urinary tract infection; in the event that they’re bleeding from their anus it could possibly be a more serious infection or an indication of cancer. 

Some other area of their body reminiscent of a wound that’s not clotting may need stitches or a nose bleed may need looking into so call your vet to make sure.

A grumpy-looking cat

(Image credit: Getty Images)

What age do cats get their period? 

Puberty begins as early as 4 months for unspayed kittens and their periods last around seven days. They’ll go into heat around every two to a few weeks from February to October; at the least within the Northern Hemisphere. Nearer the equator cats can potentially go into heat many of the 12 months, while in colder climates the time period could be shorter.

Do cats get period cramps? 

Cats don’t suffer from period cramps, although they could feel out of sorts while they’re in heat. Moreover, they may sound like they’re in pain when in heat, as their mating calls sound like howls and yelps.  

Do cats have periods in the event that they are spayed? 

Vets often recommend spaying kittens to avoid unwanted pregnancies. Spaying is the removal of the ovaries and uterus, so a spayed cat doesn’t have periods and can’t fall pregnant. You’ll be able to due to this fact prevent cat periods (in addition to a surfeit of kittens) by spaying your kitten.