Q:

Do cats have menstrual periods?

A:

Quick Answer

Female cats do experience a menstrual, or estrus, cycle by the time they are 6 months old. Sterilizing a cat before it reaches the age of maturity and begins its estrus cycle is the only way to prevent pregnancy.

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Full Answer

Cats go through the estrus cycle seasonally, meaning that they cycle based on environmental factors, such as temperature and daylight hours. Some cats may cycle for 9 months for 1 to 3 weeks at a time, while others will cycle all year.

Unlike dogs, cats self-ovulate after mating. This means that ovulation only occurs when a female mates with a tomcat, and it may take up to three or four mating sessions with different tomcats to induce ovulation.

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