When Do Dogs and Cats Come Into Heat

Have you ever wondered when cats and dogs come into heat? If you’re an animal lover who plans on adopting or purchasing pets, you’ll likely want to know this information in advance to be prepared for when this happens and what you can expect from the situation. 

Learn more about when your favourite four-legged friends may begin going through heat and how to tell if it’s happening or not.

When Do Most Animals Go Through Heat for the First Time?

The first time a cat or dog typically goes through heat is at an earlier age than most would expect. It can happen as early as four months of age, but this is primarily dependent on the specific breed of the animal. In some instances, heat won’t occur as early and may happen when the animal reaches 12 months.

How Often Will a Dog Go Into a Heat?

Most dogs will experience heat once a year. However, it can happen more frequently depending on the type of breed you own. For example, if you have a small breed dog at home, such as a Maltese or even a Chihuahua, you can expect these animals to experience heat at least twice, if not three times. Other breeds that are not too big yet not too small will also experience heat two times a year instead of one like most large dogs.

How Often Will a Cat Go Into Heat?

Cats tend to go through heat once a year. The process can start as early as February and as late as October. Of course, the length of time it lasts will also depend on other factors, including whether or not the animal becomes impregnated or not. It’s pretty standard for female cats to have more than one period per month. If a cat doesn’t mate, this period can last even longer.

When Do Dogs and Cats Come Into Heat

Signs of Heat in Dogs

So, how can you tell when a dog is going through heat? There are a few telltale signs to be aware of that can give you a better idea of whether your four-legged friend is going through this or not. These signs include:

  • Constantly Urinating – When dogs go through heat, they tend to urinate more often than usual. Of course, this means that your dog might have more accidents than usual, so try to be patient and understand what’s causing this issue in the first place.
  • Constant Licking – You’ll probably notice that your dog is suddenly licking her genitals more than she ever has before. If this is the case, it could be a sign that your pet is going through heat.
  • Slight Discharge – Much like humans, dogs can experience discharge when going through heat. Sometimes, the discharge has a bloody tinge to it.

Signs of Heat in Cats

Cats can exhibit similar behaviours as dogs when going through heat, but their mannerisms aren’t always all the same. For example, cats going through heat tend to have a distinct mating call. You may notice that you’re hearing her making noises more than she normally would. If so, she’s likely going through heat. 

Cats going through heat are often more affectionate with other animals and their human caretakers, so if your four-legged friend is giving you lots of extra love, it’s likely because she’s going through heat. Like dogs, urination can become a problem for cats during heat, and you may notice your pet spraying around the home.

Final Thoughts

Cats and dogs can come into heat early in life. For some, it’s as early as four months old. Of course, this depends on the type of breed you have at home. Now that you know when it can happen and what types of signs to be on the lookout for, you’ll know exactly when your furry friend is going through heat.

If you have any concerns about your pet, please do not hesitate to call Toorak Road Vet Clinic today on (03) 9809 2700 or make an appointment.

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