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At what age do kittens reach sexual maturity?

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
Sorry for the (perhaps) strange question, but I was wondering when a male kitten is able to impregnate a female? We have a mama cat and two of her babies (boy and girl) and I need to know how soon they need to be spayed/neutered. Thanks.
post #2 of 19
Well, it's not a problem unless the female is heat. She wouldn't be fertile unless this were the case, plus, she most likely wouldn't stand for the male, resulting in any interest being a full on cat fight (sorry for the pun ).

A female can go into heat as early as 6 months old. You'll know it when she is, lifting her tail, putting butt in the air, rubbing her buttom on anything that will let her, and making LOTS of mating calls to attract a male. It will drive you nuts.
post #3 of 19
As for spaying and neutering, the sooner the better. Most vets prefer to do females before their first heat, and in fact it's often cheaper that way. If she goes into heat beofre you get her spayed, you WILL have to keep them seperated.
post #4 of 19
Thread Starter 
Thank you for the info. I remember our what our cat was like when she went into heat. They are three months old now, so it looks like we should bring them in within the next three months then. Thanks again.
post #5 of 19
I would spay the mom cat NOW. I took a mom and son in to be spayed/neutered when the male was 14 weeks old, and the mom cat was already pregnant. So get her taken care of now, and do the kittens in the next couple of months.
post #6 of 19
Yeah, cats are actually induced ovulators, so the presence of ANY male--even a son or a brother can push the queen to ovulate. It is entirely possible for her to ovulate and be bred and successfully pregnant within about an hour. A male cat can be sexually mature as early as four months and often even earlier and there is no way of telling when that is. Do yourself and them a favor and get them in for altering very soon--especially mom.
post #7 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by shannon0218 View Post
Yeah, cats are actually induced ovulators, so the presence of ANY male--even a son or a brother can push the queen to ovulate. It is entirely possible for her to ovulate and be bred and successfully pregnant within about an hour. A male cat can be sexually mature as early as four months and often even earlier and there is no way of telling when that is. Do yourself and them a favor and get them in for altering very soon--especially mom.
Wow...I had no clue.

Very interesting :
post #8 of 19
Thread Starter 
Well, I was wanting to wait until she had weaned the kittens before taking her in.
Plus, we just had our dog fixed and it cost more than we expected so $ is an issue as well.
post #9 of 19
I thought that male cats spray when they are sexually mature? I have three kitties, and they are four months old now. I was told to get the male nuetered first because they spray, and won't stop even if you get them fixed.
post #10 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by sarahmae1 View Post
Well, I was wanting to wait until she had weaned the kittens before taking her in.
Plus, we just had our dog fixed and it cost more than we expected so $ is an issue as well.

She HAS weaned them. Even if they're still nursing for comfort, there is no health reason for them to be able to have milk from her. Kittens aren't human babies; at 8-12 weeks they really have reached the end of normal nursing. And if she lets them nurse now, she'll let them nurse again after the surgery.

I've been through this MANY times--I grew up with barn cats and had countless litters. The moms get pregnant again weeks or months before you'd think it could ever be possible, and if they're allowed free access to the males, you never even see a heat cycle. They just get pregnant.
post #11 of 19
One of my female kittens came into heat at only 5mo : when I called the vet she didnt beleive me but when I let her listen to my very vocal cat rolling the floor and howling she believed me then

I had my momma cat fixed when her kittens where around 6-7 weeks old because momma was showing definate signs of coming into heat again. She stayed with my mom for almost a week to heal because I couldnt keep her in the house and when she came back home she went right back to nursing the kittens those buggers nursed off her till they were around 14-16 weeks old.
post #12 of 19
yeah i second mama cat being spayed as soon as possible. i am dealing with this now. mom got preggo in jan - had her kittens march, got preggo june and had second litter in august.

our vets here wont spay or give shots until the kittens are at least 4 years old.
post #13 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by meemee View Post
our vets here wont spay or give shots until the kittens are at least 4 years old.
Do you mean months?

One vet I work with frequently has a three months/three pounds rule - the kittens have to weigh at least three pounds, and be at least three months old.
post #14 of 19
Another thing to remember, is that male cats retain active sperm for up to a month after the neuter. So if your little guy is approaching sexual maturity (which can happen as early as 4 months in cats) then he can still get mom and sister pregnant after he's been neutered. I know a family that had just that problem. Their vet didn't tell them to keep him away from their intact female for the next month, she went into heat and he caught her and 65 days later, 5 kittens!

Where are you located? I can look for a list of low-cost clinics that should range in price from $25 - $60 per cat. Low cost clinics are also more likely to spay/neuter starting at 8 weeks of age/2 pounds. Everyone that you have now is in good shape for "snipping"!

~Julia
post #15 of 19
Thread Starter 
Julia,
Thanks for the info. We are in South Dakota, please PM me if you want/need the city.
post #16 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ann-Marita View Post
Do you mean months?

One vet I work with frequently has a three months/three pounds rule - the kittens have to weigh at least three pounds, and be at least three months old.
sorry yup - 4 months old.
post #17 of 19
http://www.lovethatcat.com/spayneuter.html#sd

Though this only lists two resources. I would call both of them even if they're not in your area and ask for referals to more local shelters, SPCAs, generous vets, etc.

Also, do a search in petfinder.com for any listed shelters in your area and give them a call and see who they use for their spay and neuters, and see if you can get a certificate from them to get your 3 done. If none of that pans out, start calling your local city/county shelters and see what they can do to help you. Most of them should have a vet on staff or a list of vets they use and again, they may be able to give you certificate for a low cost spay/neuter.

Remember when dealing with rescue's, that most people who work there are volunteers and they're probably understaffed. You may need to call several times to get to real person, or to get your phone message returned. This doesn't mean they don't want to talk to you, it just means they're having a hard time dealing with the volume of calls and it's really easy for people to slip through the cracks.

Until you've got people snipped, no one can go outside. If mom or sister start showing signs of being in heat, then they need to be separated from the boy until they're all fixed. If he starts looking like he's trying to mount either of them, same thing, seperate until all of them are fixed.

I hope those will be of some help! Let me know if you need more info and I can see what I can find.

~Julia
post #18 of 19
This is a very informative thread!

As for snipping, our humane society has a low cost spay/neuter program. Maybe yours does as well?

Good luck!
post #19 of 19

If money is an issue go to your local humane society. they usually cost about 50$ give or take per animal.

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