The Importance of Neutering Your Cat There are over 9 million stray/feral cats in the UK. It is important for many reasons to neuter your cat including that by doing so, it will help charities like ours deal with the yearly cat crisis we face. Why Neuter Cats Kitten Season is a term used to describe the period in which cats predominantly breed and give birth. Although cats can breed nearly all year long, Kitten Season tends to run from April to late autumn. Cats can become sexually mature from just four months old which is why it is so important to get cats neutered at this age, to prevent them from becoming pregnant with unwanted litters. From four months, cats will experience heat cycles with active signs such as restlessness and calling, lasting a couple of days and reoccurring every few weeks during the breeding season. Females in season will seek out a mate during this period, with unneutered males already on the search. If there is more than one male in the vicinity, the female can mate more than once in a day. This gives her a higher chance of reproductive success and can mean her litter has several different fathers. A cat’s short reproduction cycle, with pregnancy only lasting for nine weeks, and females coming back into season just six weeks after giving birth, means there is the potential for a vast number of kittens being born in a brief period. And, as cats can have litters of up to nine kittens at one time (with an average of 4-6 kittens), the number of cats and kittens needing homes can reach crisis levels in the summer months. This chart illustrates the amount of kittens that can be produced in a small amount of time. Neutering has lots of benefits from both the cat’s perspective and their owners. It not only prevents unwanted litters but also unwanted behaviours such as spraying in the home. The best time to neuter your kitten is at four months of age as they start to reach sexual maturity. The Kitten Neutering Database (KIND) provides further information regarding the neutering of your cat.