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My castrated cat is in heat

If we have taken the very good decision of sterilize to our cat, discovering her in heat will fill us with questions. If it is your case, if you live with a castrated cat who is, still, in heat, keep reading this article in which we tell you what has happened and how it can be solved, because on many occasions we are told about the sterilization, but in a few we are mentioned the possibility, very low but existing, that our cat maintains the zeal once castrated.

Discover why your castrated cat is in heat, the causes and solutions to this problem.

The cat in heat

First, let’s establish what are the symptoms that we can identify in a cat in heat, to make sure that is what happens to our castrated cat. In our environment, cats can go into heat practically throughout the year, even from January to October, depending on the hours of light. When a cat is in heat we can observe the following behavior:

  • Meow usual and very high tone, the cat “screams” to the point of disturbing the neighborhood.
  • Restlessness, she will be restless, nervous, upset.
  • Tail lift to expose your genitals.
  • Scratching against people, objects or soil.

All the drawbacks of this table make many people decide to sterilize their cat, in addition to the benefits for your health, such as reducing the risk of developing breast cancer or preventing pyometra (uterine infection).

If your cat is castrated and exhibits these behaviors characteristic of heat, we should take it to the veterinarian to confirm it. For this you can perform a cytology taking a sample from your vagina with a swab. This way you can observe under the microscope the type of cells present, which will be the ones that indicate which phase of the cycle our cat is in. It is also possible extract blood to determine the levels of estrogen, which are the hormones that will confirm the heat in our castrated cat.


If the tests confirm that, indeed, our castrated cat is in heat: what has failed? Sterilization usually refers to the removal of the uterus and the two ovaries of the female. It is also called ovariohysterectomy. It is recommended to do it before the first heat, when the cat is about five months old, since that is how you get the maximum benefits for your health. It is performed under general anesthesia through a small ventral incision (it can be lateral, especially in cases in which only the ovaries are removed) through which the uterus and ovaries are removed.

The veterinarian during surgery makes sure that there is no rest, sutures the stumps, the different layers and ends up sewing skin with stitches or staples. Analgesic and antibiotic treatment is prescribed for the first days. At home we must ensure that the wound does not become infected or open. We will see that the cat will make normal life practically from the first moment. About a week later the stitches are removed and we forget about the topic since, without ovaries, there is no sexual cycle. except that our castrated cat goes into heat. So, what has failed?

The causes of the heat of a sterilized cat

Rest or ovarian remnant: In the operation that we just described, we saw that the veterinarian must make sure that he has completely extracted the ovaries, but sometimes this does not happen and the remains left are responsible for the zeal of our castrated cat. Sometimes it is not easy, for anatomical reasons, to perform a perfect extraction.

Other times there is tissue octopus ectopic, that is, outside the ovary, and that tissue, even if it is made up of only cells, is able to activate the hormonal cycle. It is also possible that tissue remains in peritoneum capable of becoming functional. Even taking into account these explanations, it seems that the highest percentage of causes of the so-called remnant ovarian syndrome is the surgical error. In this regard, there is a published article [1], where it is stated as the cause of most syndromes.

The solutions for the heat of a castrated cat

Once the diagnosis is confirmed, the solution passes through a new surgical intervention. There is drug treatment with progestins but it is associated with serious side effects, such as the development of mammary tumors or even the stump pyometra (the infection from where we removed the uterus).

Therefore, for a definitive solution it is necessary to intervene again looking for the ovarian remains (exploratory laparotomy) for its complete elimination, in an operation similar to the previous one in terms of preparation and postoperative care. Finally, note that the ovarian remainder is not a usual complication and the vast majority of sterilizations are performed without any complications and, of course, completely eliminate the zeal of our castrated cat.

This article is merely informative, in .com we do not have the faculty to prescribe veterinary treatments or make any kind of diagnosis. We invite you to take your pet to the veterinarian in case of any type of condition or discomfort.

If you want to read more articles similar to My castrated cat is in heat, we recommend that you enter in our section of Other health problems.

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