How to stop a cat in heat from meowing

If you’re a cat owner, you’re probably used to the sounds that your cat makes. From gentle purrs to excited meows, it’s safe to say that the vocalizations they make are mostly directed towards you.

This is the same for both female and male cats. However, if you are the cohabitant of a female cat who hasn’t been sterilized, chances are you’ve experienced a period of time where she has constant mood swings, is frequently wanting to get out of the house and gets very loud, at all hours of the day or night. And if you haven’t experienced this behaviour, you will when your cat gets a little older.

If you’re reading this article because the above scenario is currently happening to you, it is most likely that your female cat is currently in a heat cycle. The yowling, mood swings and desire to get out of the house are all classic symptoms of a cat in heat. But what does being in heat mean? Let’s find out more about it.

What is being in heat?

Being ‘in heat’ – scientifically known as ‘estrus’ – is a part of a female cats’ natural bodily function, which can happen a few times a year. As mammals, cats are biologically inclined to reproduce in order to ensure survival of the species. This is basically the female cats’ way of telling male cats around her that she’s ready to be pregnant.

In the wild, this behaviour may be useful, but when this happens in the home, it can be very difficult for both you and your feline friend to manage.

How do you know if your cat is in heat?

When your cat is in heat, she will do everything she can in order to let you know it. She is feeling uncomfortable, and this discomfort can last for days or even weeks at a time. This is how tomcats (male cats) are alerted to fertile females who can create new litters after mating.

 

These are the classic symptoms of a female cat in heat:

1. Wanting affection

 When your female cat is in heat, she will tend to have a desire for affection from you. Excessively rubbing you, being affectionate towards you and wanting more pets, scratches and hugs than usual is usually a sign that she is feeling the brunt of heat.

She may also get into the mating position when you pet her body – which is dropping her head and front part of the body to the floor, slightly raising her hind quarters and putting the tail to the side to expose her vulva.

 

2. Feeling restless

 Is your female cat always wanting to go outside of the home? Does she struggle with staying indoors, and does she display signs of restlessness? For example, if your female cat is constantly loitering around the windows, doors or any known exit points of the home, and meowing at them (and at you), chances are your female cat wants to get outside and meet a suitable mate in order to get pregnant.

 

3. Urinating around the home

 During heat, your female cat may start urinating around the home. This can range from very fine, minimal sprays of urine or (more uncommonly) a full peeing session around different places in the home. This is natural behaviour in cats to mark their territory, and in the wild, this behaviour lets wandering male cats know that there’s a fertile female cat around for them to mate with.

 

4. Very loud and constant vocalizations

As a part of her heat cycle, female cats advertise their availability to mate to the world around her by loud vocalisations, sometimes referred to as ‘yowling’. If your cat is making noises and vocalisations that you don’t normally hear from her, this could mean that your female cat is currently in heat, and is looking for a male cat to complete her fertility cycle.

Meowing or Yowling?

When your female cat is in heat, you’ll start to hear her change her vocalization patterns, almost as if she is in pain. This is more apparent in owners of docile cats who meow occasionally and only at people they know – and once the yowling starts, it can get very annoying.

The thing to know about yowling is that it is not similar to regular meowing. It is a vocalization that is intended to attract a lot of attention, and is supposed to be loud. This is because in the wild, females need to attract as many prowling males as possible in order to get the best chances of having a good male to mate with. So if your female cat is making really loud vocalisations that are not similar to what you’re used to hearing from her, then you know that she is in her heat cycle.

What can I do to stop my cat in heat from meowing?

There unfortunately isn’t much you can do in the way of stopping your cat from meowing when in heat. This is a natural reaction to the changes that are occurring to her hormones and body.

However, you can do some things with your cat to tire her out in the day, so that you won’t be having sleepless nights. An increase in affection during a heat cycle means your female cat is more inclined to play and can be more active. Play with her more using her favorite toys, and then give her all the affection that she wants from you at the end of the day before she goes to bed. You want to constantly make sure that she is kept as comfortable as possible.

Finally, a permanent solution is to spay your feline companion. This is an irreversible solution to the ‘meowing while in heat’ issue, and it will make all of the symptoms of being in heat (yowling, restlessness, urinating in parts of the house) disappear, while ensuring that her health is maintained in the long-term.

 

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