The estrus cycle, more commonly referred to as "heat," affects female cats as young as four months, and can last anywhere from two days to a couple of weeks. The heat cycle repeats every two to three weeks, so it is important to know how to take care of your cat when she is in heat. Cats in heat tend to howl, be restless and spray their urine on objects to alert tom cats to their condition. Learning to care for your cat during this time is vital in preventing unwanted litters.
Keep your cat indoors while she is in heat. This is the simplest way to prevent an unwanted pregnancy. Letting your cat out when she is in heat is an invitation for tom cats to mate with her, and they will be able to hear her mating call from miles away, even if she is indoors. Watch her carefully, because she will try to escape.
Provide physical affection to your cat. Cats are needier and more affectionate when they are in heat, so petting, brushing and cuddling her will keep her calmer during her estrus cycle.
Distract your cat by providing toys for her to play with and keeping her entertained. Cats in heat are restless creatures, so try to use up her excess energy and tire her out.