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The iNews Network

The Student News Site of NYC iSchool

The iNews Network

The Student News Site of NYC iSchool

The iNews Network

How does your cat in heat affect others? What can you do to prevent it?


Professional cleaner Olivia Bernard has been running around her city all day to put food on the table for her child. You can imagine her relief when she finally makes it to her last stop of the day. Her last patient is an old dying cat lady who we’ll call  Greta. Olivia, tired and stretched to her limit, is disgusted to discover that Greta is not the only creature she will have to deal with.

Greta’s nasty cat is meowing and rubbing herself all over Olivia and Olivia’s cleaning supplies. Now a tired cleaner who had been stretched to her limit has been sent over the edge. As cleaner Olivia leaves her patient’s home she wonders to herself: “What was wrong with that cat?” She searches it up only to discover that the cat is in “heat.”

Through comparison and contrast of the experiences + examples of people who have had 1st hand experience with cats (female cats specifically), this article covers the uncomfortable subject of a cat being in heat. It describes what being in heat is, how you can handle it, how it feels for the cats themselves, and how it affects others (human beings). 

What is being in heat? 

For a cat being in heat is the time in the cat’s cycle when they are fertile and can get pregnant, basically a cat’s period. A cat’s 1st heat wave typically occurs between 4-12 months of age shortly after a cat will start experiencing real Heat cycles that last 2-3 weeks and recur every 2-3 weeks.

During this period your cat will feel urged to escape, find a mate, and have babies. These sexual urges are the reasoning behind the loud meowing noises,  spraying(urine), and strange positions/behaviors/affection that you may experience with your cat during this period.

“My cat has been dragging her body, making really weird noises sometimes, and did this thing where she was walking like a cricket with broken legs that signaled that she may be feeling the 1st waves of the tsunami that is going into heat,” said Sanaa James, her kitten has been exhibiting the “heat wave” stage before a kitten turns into a cat and goes into actual heat.

Service workers + cats in heat

Hospice nurse Hannah Wise hops from house to house to provide comfort and care for people navigating the difficult time at the end of their lives. Dealing with so many different people, Hannah is very susceptible to being in less than ideal situations like for example dealing with other people slobbering and clobbering pets. Due to these unfair circumstances, she shared her experience at a patient’s home who had a cat. 

“It was horrible, the cat was meowing and rubbing herself all over my backpack. It was disgusting. Anyone who has a female cat should get their cats fixed, seriously. It’s awful when they go into heat, the easy solution is just to get them fixed, your cat will be a much better kitty after you do. Yes, it’s natural but if you get them fixed they won’t be popping out a bunch of babies and won’t go into heat every now and then which will be really annoying. It’s better to just get them fixed,” stated Hannah. 


The official term for getting your cat fixed is “spaying.”  According to the Animal Care Center, getting your cat spayed is a normal step in achieving basic cat health care. 

The surgery is typically performed by removing the uterus and both ovaries, since the ovaries are responsible for the heat cycles and many other behavioral issues having your cat spayed is the perfect permanent fix, eliminating all risk of your cat having any kittens”.


According to, the official term for a cat that has not been neutered or spayed is a Queen.

Brooklyn-based “Queen” owner Sanaa James tells us how she loves her cat for the most part, but there are aspects of being a cat owner that she doesn’t love quite as much. 

“I don’t like when you’re eating and they’re getting all in everything from their super annoying creatures. I have a female cat, she isn’t spayed but she’s about to be. I don’t even like talking about it because it’s really annoying. Because I need to get it done and it’s very triggering to have you talking to me about it. She’s starting to show signs but I’m not sure she is full-fledged ‘in heat yet’ because she’s still a kitten,” said Sanaa.

Clearly, Sanaa feels insecure and at times angry about not spaying her cat, but who can blame her though? It is a procedure that costs time and money to get 2 of life’s most precious fleeting fragilities.

 “It’s just what everybody does, ever since I’ve had my first cat and I’ve had 4 it’s just common knowledge,” Sanaa stated.


The official term for a cat that has been neutered/spayed is Molly.

Phoebe Baliger, a cat owner of 4, 2 males and 2 females has “Molly’s.”

Phoebe says, “None of my cats have ever gone into heat..they were already neutered when we adopted them. I like female cats more because they’re a bit more calm and well-behaved. My male cats tend to be more active and aggressive, compared to the female cats who are more shy and calm.” 

Phoebe’s cat coming spayed from the adoption center is the perfect example of how having your cat spayed is the expectation that most people have, and not having it can be viewed as neglectful. 

Seeing how Sanaa describes her Queen as being aggressive + annoying while Phoebe describes her Molly’s as being more calm and well-behaved implies that in addition to the obvious purposes of having your cat spayed also benefits the cat on a behavioral front. 

Is it really important to get your cat spayed?

The behavioral differences between Phoebe’s spayed cats and Sanaa’s unspayed cat and the difference in their actual enjoyment of being cat owners show that spaying your cat is important pertaining to the effect that it has on YOU as the owner. Also, based on Hannah’s experience being a service worker and having to be around a heated cat against her own will, having your cat spayed will improve your home environment showing hospitality and respect for yourself and anyone else who may come into your home.

It’s important to have your cat spayed because it ends/prevents their struggling, prevents them from having unwanted children, and positively affects their mood and behavior.

Having your cat spayed is a controversial topic because some will argue that it’s necessary to pay for a procedure to stop something natural but for the most part people understand it’s unfair to make your cat struggle through heat cycles while keeping her caged up in your home.

Get your cat spayed!


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