In Heat

Female cats can only be mated if they are in heat. The heat is seasonal. This means that they are in heat more often and more clearly in periods with a lot of daylight, such as spring and summer. Most domestic cats go into heat all year round, but generally less frequently in autumn and winter. In heat occurs at intervals of about two to three to six weeks or even longer. The length of these intervals depends on the season (daylight-dependent), the breed and the individual animal. A female is on average in the heat for eight days, and that usually does not go unnoticed by the owner. She suddenly becomes very affectionate, falls at the slightest stretch on the ground, is restless, has less appetite, always wants to go outside, and frequently meows, which can also be accompanied by a loud, ‘cuddling’ sound. When the female cat is touched on her hindquarters above the tail, she raises her hindquarters. While the rest of her body stays flat on the ground, she keeps her tail a bit to the side, and she makes a few trickling movements with her hind legs. Some females show some futility during the heat. At the door and in the garden, an astonishing number of males suddenly appear, enthusiastically putting out their scent flags, preferably on doors and windows. A female is not monogamous: several males can sometimes cover her. Ovulation only takes place after mating. This explains why a female in one litter can have offspring from different males.

The male usually doesn’t get more comfortable when he becomes sexually mature (just like the female) from about five/six months, but “early bloomers” are ready by four months! To mark his territory, he will spray with urine that has a characteristic pungent smell. A male cat can smell a female in heat from miles away!

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