Why Do Cats Scream When Mating?

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Cats are some of our oldest animal companions. They have been domesticated for over 7 thousand years, and their wild behavior has evolved a great deal in that time as well. They’ve gone from animals that are primarily hunters, capturing prey and keeping down rodent populations, to a furry, cuddly companion living in our homes.

But while you can domesticate a cat, there are still primal behaviors that cannot be bred out of a house cat and one of those is their mating style. You may have heard this a time or two. Why do cats scream when mating?

» You might like Can Cats Swim? and Why Your Cat Lies on Your Chest.

Why Do Cats Scream When Mating

Any cat owner who has watched their cat bring a small live bird or mouse into the house knows exactly what we are talking about here. Perhaps to our shock or even dismay, cats have a strange way of mating, with screaming being one of the most disturbing aspects.

Especially if your cat is around and just under a year old, you may hear her wailing or even screaming outside. It’s disconcerting at best. You may rush out to see what’s happening and whether they’re okay.

A screaming cat, especially your cat, can cause worry. You may wonder if that is an ordinary thing to hear, or if this is something that should be addressed in some way.

Well, this short guide is here to help explain some reasons your cat may be screaming during mating, as well as signs that you should look out for after they have mated.

Sexual Maturity In Cats And Heat

Cat crouching

Cats usually reach young adulthood by the time they are a year old. Female cats reach sexual maturity around 5 to 9 months old, whereas males will usually take a few more months, around 8 to 12 months old. Once they have reached this point in their lives, they are likely to start entering heat.

A cat that has entered heat is a pretty easy thing to spot. Usually, you’ll find them licking themselves more than usual, crouching quite low, sticking their back and tail out slightly from time to time.

This is important information to know if you don’t want your cats to have kittens. And keep in mind that a cat needs to have gone through heat at least once before it is usually considered safe or optimal to have them neutered or spayed.

You also don’t want your cat running out of your home at the first chance they can get to mate, which they have been known to do on occasion, especially when young.

Why Is My Cat Screaming During Mating?

Why Do Cats Scream When Mating

Now, we come to the main point of this article: Explaining what exactly is causing your cat to scream or cry whilst she is mating.

We say she, as many cat owners may have noticed that more often than not, cats that wail whilst they are mating tend to be female.

Unspayed female cats (which are also known as queens), tend to demonstrate this behavior more often, although older queens that have not been spayed will also make these noises. When they are in heat, it is to demonstrate and notify nearby males that they are in heat, and ready to mate.

If your cat is screaming while in the process of mating, it is probably because cats are what are known as induced ovulator animals.

cat on a bed

What this means is that ovulation will only start once they have mated beforehand, at which point their eggs will be released.

And as you might already have guessed, this only happens once the male cat’s penis has entered the female. As you can imagine, a little screaming is understandable, because a male cat’s penis is barbed, like many other mammals, which has the potential to painfully scrape against a female cat’s vagina.

The cat’s discomfort is not helped by the fact that males tend to also bite the neck of the female they are mounting.

All this can be quite overwhelming for a young female, which is why it is recommended to give your cat a little space for a while after they have mated.

Signs To Look Out For After Your Cat Has Mated

A cat laying in the sun

So, if you know that your cat has mated, what sign should you look out for after it has happened?

Abnormal Discharge

If you have noticed any strange discharge from your cat, or they seem more lethargic than they should, you should probably take your cat to the vet.

This only happens if a female has had a particularly rough experience, and should at least be inspected by your vet if these symptoms continue to persist.


Of course, there is the chance that your cat may be pregnant after mating. If they appear to have a swollen belly and are eating more, as well as swollen mammary glands, your cat may be pregnant.

You should book an ultrasound scan for your cat after a month, as this will rule out a false pregnancy after this point. If they are pregnant, make sure to tend to their needs, and give them enough space.

A pregnant cat drinking water

Final Thoughts

As you can imagine, a screaming cat can be a cause for concern. And whilst it certainly sounds discomforting, just remember to give your cat space after the fact.

More often than not, they are fine after a while.

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2 cats mating

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