When unspayed female cats reach sexual maturity, they go into heat on a regular basis. This usually happens when they are 4 to 6 months old.
The cat will then go through a heat cycle every few weeks, which can last anywhere from a few days to more than a week.
If your cat hasn't been spayed, she will continue to go into heat for the rest of her life. Fortunately, there are methods for calming her down during these episodes.
Signs that your cat is in heat
There are a few indicators that your cat is in heat. These are some examples:
- Yowling or mating cries that persist for several days
- Appetite loss
- Anxious or nervous behaviour
- Unusual shows of affection, such as rubbing against your legs on a regular basis
- Excessive grooming, particularly of the genitalia
- It sprays or marks its area.
- Attempting to get outside on a regular basis
How to Calm a Cat in Heat
1. Introduce catnip
Catnip, also known as Nepeta cataria, is a plant that can be given to cats. It is available in both dry and fresh form. While some cats become energetic or even aggressive when introduced to catnip, others become placid and quiet.
The relaxing effect on a cat in heat won't last long, but it can keep the effects at away for around 10 minutes. This is especially useful if your cat is continually yowling or otherwise misbehaving.
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2. Have some fun with your cat
Playing with a cat in heat might keep it from scratching, yowling, or wanting to go outside. Give your cat toys she can shred – the best are either catnip-filled or puzzle feeders. These provide a better alternative for your pet's surplus energy and can keep her calm for a short period of time.
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3. Use a heating pad
Some cats in heat might be calmed by sleeping with a heating pad or blanket. This is because these pads provide them with a sense of comfort and safety.
4. Use Feliway
Feliway is a natural soothing remedy for cats, whether they are in heat or otherwise agitated or worried. It works by emitting a synthetic pheromone identical to the one that cats excrete through glands on their faces when they are calm.
It is available in diffusers, wipes, and sprays and is suitable for pets and children. Diffusers last the longest — up to 30 days at home — and have been shown to calm up to 90% of cats.
Feliway is amazing since it works on both male and female cats. It is also useful in multi-cat households. However, it does not work immediately, so begin using it at least two weeks before your cat's next heat cycle.
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5. Male cats should be kept away from your female cat
A cat in heat is more prone to get anxious or hyperactive while in the presence of male cats. If you also have a male cat, it's best to keep them apart. If feasible, try to get the male out of the house until the heat cycle is over.
If it doesn't work, segregate them into rooms where they can't interact. This may not totally prevent excessive meowing or other heat-related behaviours, but it can reduce them.
6.Keep your female cat indoors
Keep your cat inside unless you don't mind her being pregnant. Not only will this avoid unintended kittens, but it may also help calm her because she won't be among other felines.
7. Visit the vet clinic
If you don't want to neuter your cat but don't want her to go into heat, ask your vet to give a synthetic progestin hormone injection. These hormones are designed to delay or mitigate the effects of the heat cycle.
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