How to Help a Cat in Heat

Updated: February 26, 2024

As time goes by, your adorable kitties grow physically and sexually mature. This stage is when your cat goes “in heat”.

Do all cats go into heat? Well, female cats who have not been spayed will go in heat. According to VCA Animal Hospital, on average, puberty or sexual maturity first occurs in cats when they are about six months of age, but this can vary slightly by the time of year. Various factors may also include breed, weight, health condition, nutrition, and many others.

Cats may be fertile when in heat but it does not necessarily mean they are physically ready to go through pregnancy or that you should breed them.

In this article, we have listed the different heat signs and symptoms and the many ways considered efficient in dealing with cats in heat including how you can help a cat in heat and when to use a cat diaper.

"Cats may be fertile when in heat, but they may not be physically ready for pregnancy."

Cat in Heat Signs and Symptoms

If you are a first-time cat parent, you probably learn the signs and symptoms your cat will experience if they are already in their heat cycle. You should be informed of these things so you can handle your furbaby in the best way possible during this exciting milestone.

do cats bleed when in heat

Cat in Heat Sounds

You might notice a “cat in heat sound.” Your cat is on their heat cycle when they do unusual yowling, meowing, or moaning which is a disconcerting sound. These unusual, distressed vocalizations are also known as “calling” and may even keep you up at night. So, you might wonder how to stop a cat in heat from meowing, but it’s best to stay patient and wait it out.

Unusual Display of Affection

Cats are usually known to be reserved and aloof, but when they are in heat, they may become unusually affectionate. They may rub their sides against any surface, and sometimes even against you! However, some cats, too, who are known to be affectionate may act cold toward you.

Licking Their Private Parts More Often

If your female cat is in heat, they may usually lick their private part more frequently. Licking their private areas is their way of cleaning the bloody mucus discharge that comes with being in heat. If your cat is excessively licking, you should have her wear a diaper for cats.

Attempts to Escape

Cats that are experiencing heat usually find their mate outside your house. In this case, they would try to escape and go outdoors so they may spread their scent and look for a probable mate. Be careful not to let your cat outside while they are in heat.

Tries the Mating Position

It is hard for most cats to control their sexual urges when in heat. Even when there is no mate, they may try to perform and act out the mating position. According to The Spruce Pets, your cat in heat may oftentimes assume the mating position: the head is placed down, forelegs are bent, rear quarters are lifted to display the perineum (the area between the anus and the vulva), and the tail is raised and maintained to the side of the body. This mating position is called lordosis. When your cat assumes it, her rear legs will move harmoniously as if walking in place.

Some signs and symptoms of a cat in heat also include restlessness, crawling low to the ground, peeing more than usual to mark their territories, and may even experience a decreased appetite.

How to Handle Cats in Heat

If you have observed the signs and symptoms mentioned above in your cat, you should also know how to deal with them. It can be difficult for you to calm and deal with a cat that is experiencing the heat cycle, especially if it is her first heat. Having the right knowledge on how to calm a cat in heat is a must!

how to help a cat in heat

Recognize That Your Cat is in Heat

Make sure to know the differences in the behavior of your cats when they are in heat from their behavior when they are just sick and not feeling well. It can be tricky at times! Make sure that the signs of a cat in heat should be marked checked for you to know that your pet is really in heat.

Keep Your Female Cats Away From Males

If you are in a multi-cat household, it is better to separate your female cats when they are in heat. Make sure they can’t escape and they are not easily approachable by male cats.

Have Them Wear Cat Diapers

A diaper for cats can come very handy in dealing with cats in heat. Cat diapers, like the ones from Pet Parents®, were designed to keep your home mess-free. Some cats may experience bloody discharge during their heat cycle. Pet Parents® Washable Cat Diapers help prevent messes from discharge. Plus, these washable diapers for cats are also able to prevent your cat from peeing and marking in inappropriate places.

Additionally, having your furbaby wear cat diapers is a great pregnancy prevention method. Though these diapers will not keep lurking male cats away, these will help prevent accidental breeding. If you have both male and female cats, diapers are a must.  

Give Them a Heat Pack or Warm Towel

One way how to calm your cat in heat is to give your female cat a heat pack or a warm towel to sit on. You can also give them their own Pet Parents® Pawtect® Blanket as a cozy spot for them to decompress. These waterproof pet blankets are made up of our specifically created faux fur fabric and our proprietary Sherpup® multi-layer material that helps keep your furbaby relaxed and secured.

Use Cat Wipes

Keep your cat in heat clean by using Pet WiPees™ Cat wipes. These all purpose cat wipes can be used to wipe away any discharge or clean anywhere on your cat’s body. With vet-approved, pet-safe scents and gentle cleansers, these wipes are safe for daily use. In fact, these cat wipes act as supplements for the skin, providing beneficial ingredients from the outside in. Plus, there are no parabens, sulfates, alcohols, or harsh chemicals. So, you can use them when your cat is in heat or whenever they need a quick bathless clean.

Play With Your Cat

Cats in heat might needs some distraction so they don’t feel the urge to keep looking for a mate during their heat cycle. Playing with your cat, scratching, or brushing their lower back can help them relax. According to Wedgewood Pharmacy, a little extra attention may help ease the stress of estrus. Give your feline friend some extra attention around the home when she is in heat, and you may find that it calms her down and keeps her stress levels manageable.

It is encouraged to make sure, as pet parents, you can recognize the signs of a cat in heat, how to calm a cat in heat, and how to help prevent pregnancy. It is also a good idea to research how long a heat cycle lasts for cats

It is recommended to use diapers for cats when your female cat is fertile and experiencing their heat cycle. Effectively handling and dealing with your cat at this stage can help prevent unplanned breedings, and keep your home clean.

"One way how to calm your cat in heat is to give your female cat a heat pack or a warm towel to sit on."