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Do Cats Pee When In Heat – 5 Things To Consider

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So your intact female cat has just started yowling up a storm, and her behavior is a little different than normal. If you’ve owned an intact female cat or queen before, you probably know all the signs of a cat being in heat; being loud, sticking their bottom in the air, and asking for extra attention. One big question cat owners have is, do cats pee when in heat?

Cats pee when they are in heat. Your cat may pee more often when she’s in heat, and you might notice that she’s peeing places she normally wouldn’t. Urine scent is an important way for cats to communicate with one other while in heat.

So why does your queen’s bathroom behavior change? What does all of this peeing mean, and what can you do to prevent it from stinking up your house? We’ll go over everything you need to know.

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5 Reasons Cats Pee When In Heat

Your intact cat’s peeing during heat is likely normal. Many instincts tell her to behave this way, and she’s going to listen to those instincts even if she doesn’t entirely understand what she’s doing or why.

Here are some of the most common reasons for increased peeing during heat. That way, you can understand your cat’s behavior and how to deal with it, even if she doesn’t!

They Are Marking Territory

Peeing and spraying are both ways to mark territory. Contrary to popular belief, female cats do spray just like the boys do. The main difference is that a female cat is more likely to spray when she’s in heat than any other time, while male cats might spray whenever they feel like it, especially when they feel stressed or threatened.

Both peeing and spraying are an effective way for your cat to mark their territory and space. Especially if you have a multi-cat home, your cat might be trying to claim some space for herself while she’s in heat.

She’s also trying to make herself feel more comfortable. Spreading scent is one way cats make themselves comfortable in their home. That’s also part of why you might see your cat rubbing their face on a favorite piece of furniture, doorways, and even the walls. Like their urine, your cat’s face has many scent-producing glands that can help establish territory.

So by peeing on the floor, carpeting, walls, or furniture, your cat is trying to mark her space and make it feel safer at the same time.

They Are Trying to Attract a Tom Cat

When your female cat is in heat, the contents of her urine change slightly. That’s also part of why it might seem stinkier to you while she’s in heat!

Because heat, or estrus, is when your female cat is fertile, her urine also contains important pheromones and chemicals that tell other cats that she’s ready to make a family.

If you’ve ever seen one female cat sniff your cat’s rear end while she’s in heat and then bap or hiss at her, that’s likely why. Female cats can smell the same hormones, and it may irritate them or make them feel like the cat that’s in heat is competition.

But for Tomcats or intact male cats, those pheromones are a sweet signal that there is a fertile female somewhere nearby.

Don’t be too surprised if you start getting more stray males in your yard when your cat is in heat, even if she’s an indoor-only cat! The scent of those pheromones can still make it out into your yard and attract Tomcats, which is a big part of why your cat starts peeing so much more. She’s attracting potential mates!

Your Cat Might Be More Stressed Than Normal

Your cat may also be signaling that’s she’s stressed while in heat. This is a common reaction, but it can be hard to tell the difference between stress-urinating and heat-urinating.

If you suspect that your cat might be stressed, especially the first couple of times she goes into heat, pay attention to her other behavior and make sure she has plenty of safe spaces to hide.

Just don’t get too upset with her if she pees in those safe spaces.

She’s Competing With Another Cat

Cat breeders and owners with multiple intact cats see this behavior more than cat owners with a single cat home or only one intact cat.

One reason your cat might pee more when she’s in heat is that she’s trying to make her scent clearer in competition with other intact and possibly fertile cats. Spreading her scent makes it more likely that she’ll be the one to mate with any Tomcats in the area.

Cats that go into heat simultaneously or close together may also intentionally pee over one another’s markings. That can work in your favor as long as both cats choose to pee in the litterbox.

Unfortunately, a lot of cats will pee everywhere but the litterbox when they are in heat. That often means that you need to be really on top of cleaning, or your cats will likely pee on top of each other’s markings.

Something Else Is Wrong With Your Cat

One thing you need to know if you want to take care of an intact female cat is that frequent peeing can also be a sign of other common health problems in your cat. It isn’t always just because they are in heat.

Sometimes your cat might also have other complications, like a UTI or kidney stone, while they are in heat. Usually, their behavior will be different if this happens. For instance, they might show signs of distress while trying to pee, or they might pee even more often.

If you think something might be wrong with your cat, or they seemed stressed when they pee, call your vet. They should be able to tell you whether it’s likely that your cat is just in heat and peeing normally or if it sounds like they need an appointment.

Can I Spay A Cat In Heat

Technically it is possible to spay a cat in heat, but it’s not an ideal situation. There are many reasons you might not want to spay a cat in heat ranging from medical to behavioral issues that can come up after spaying.

For one thing, the area around your cat’s uterus is swollen when she’s in heat. That can complicate spaying and make excess bleeding more likely during the surgery. It can also make the tissue more prone to tearing, complicating the surgery and making recovery longer.

Because of those complications, some vets will refuse to spay a cat in heat. Other vets will move forward with the surgery since the increased risk is small, but it’s common for them to charge more for the procedure.

How Do You Stop A Female Cat From Spraying While In Heat

Your female cat’s spraying is likely because she’s marking territory and trying to attract a mate. That means you can treat your cat spraying like a male cat spraying. Here are a few quick tips:

  • Keep laundry, towels, and other items likely to cause spraying off the floor
  • Restrict access to doors and windows where your cat might see other animals
  • Always clean spraying up quickly and thoroughly
  • Consider using cat pheromones to keep her stress levels low
  • Try using enzyme cleaners to eliminate leftover scent from spraying

Things To Consider

Once your cat has gone into heat, there are pretty good chances that she’ll start to pick up behaviors that will continue even after she’s been spayed. That’s one reason that many cat rescues and shelters spay kittens even before their first heat cycle; it’s a way to help prevent behavior changes.

Spaying your cat is also just a good idea in general. A spayed cat lives an average of 3-5 years longer than an intact cat. Spaying also eliminates the chance of your cat getting porphyria, potentially fatal infection of the uterus.

While spaying is a personal decision, we do recommend it to every cat owner. Not only can spaying increase the health of your cat, but it also helps prevent your cat from getting pregnant and contributing to the overpopulation of cats.

If you choose to keep your cat intact, remember that her spraying and other heat-related behaviors aren’t entirely in her control. Her instincts are telling her what to do, and she can’t control it.

So, even if her behavior starts to get annoying, you should never take it out on your cat. She won’t understand, and your irritation may stress her and make her act out even more than usual.

It’s also important to remember that your cat’s heat cycle may be incredibly regular, somewhat unpredictable, or anything in-between. Most cats will go into heat primarily in the spring-autumn, but some will have heat cycles year-round, and others will go into heat more often in the winter.

Please pay attention to your cat’s cycle over at least one year to get a sense of when she’s most likely to go into heat. If you keep your cat intact her whole life, be aware that her cycle may change as she gets older.