Tuesday 17 April 2012

Can a spayed female cat be sexually assaulted by an unneutered male?

Yesterday, while at work, I received a rather concerned phone call from the wife informing me that my cute cat, Miffy, may have had some trouble with one of the local cats that we see around from time to time. 
Yesterday’s attack was performed by one we call "Hop-Along", an older tom cat who walks with a limp, but one who apparently run extremely fast for a cat who only has three working legs.

The wife’s concern was that Miffy may have been sexually assaulted.  Now, Miffy has been spayed, and I assumed a spayed cat couldn’t be the victim of such an assault.  So, with the help of the internet, I decided to find out.

Miffy : victim of a sex crime?

First up, I found this interesting article about mating cycles of cats, which contained a lot of information I didn’t know, including that a cat can have kittens from several different fathers in the same litter, due to repeated matings taking place over the 21-day heat cycle.  Ever wondered why cats have different coloured kittens?  Apparently that's one of the reasons.

However, this says nothing about whether a spayed female can attract a mate.  I found some interesting forum answers here –

which on the whole suggest that if a spaying is done correctly then a female cat is unable to attract a mate.  There are also a couple of interesting forum answers here

and here

which suggest that “humping” done by an unneutered male towards a spayed female may be a form of territorial fighting or marking.  Eventually, I found this

which is the best answer I have seen so far.  Despite being unverified, the answer backed up what I was beginning to think, which is no, a spayed/neutered cat cannot be “raped” by another cat which has not been neutered.  As it says in the post linked above, cats have no concept of “rape”, and mate purely to reproduce.  If a female is not on heat then there is no reason for a male to be attracted to her, since her status of being in heat is advertised by the smell she gives off.  Provided a female has been neutered correctly, she cannot go into heat.

This is not to say, of course, that an unneutered male cat won’t attack a female.  A spayed female is simply another cat, one that might have strayed on to its territory.

It appears that Miffy might have been attacked, but that’s all.  I’m pretty sure she’ll be fine.  Now I just have to convince the wife...

Miffy : In training for the next battle

April 18th 2012


  1. First: the term is “spayed.” The word “splayed” means something else entirely.

    Second: yes, a spayed animal can be sexually assaulted, because the assault, the same as human sexual assault, is not always about sex, it’s about power and dominance, too.

  2. Thanks for letting me know, its been corrected. Not sure why I kept spelling it like that. Still in two minds as to the answer, though. Might just ask the vet next time I take Miffy for a check up!

  3. I just got back from the vet with my spayed female (who is very petite)she Was sexually assulted by a huge Tom cat in our neighborhood she must have put up a heck of a fight there Was alot of swelling my vet said it Was most likely a teritorial fight she will need to go back in six-eight weeks to have a feline aids test done

  4. Our cat, Herschel (mistakenly given a boy name by my grandpa) was possibly assaulted by another cat near our house. We heard squeals and cries outside, and raced out the house to unveil what happened. Herschel limped onto the scene with a cut on her nose and blood on her chest. When she walked off to tend to her wounds, I noticed fecal matter and a clear, goo-like substance near her private parts. I'm not saying the substance was ejaculate material, but it definitely caught me off guard. She wasn't in heat, so as to why it happened, my only conclusion would be that it happened over territorial matters. I think the fecal matter was immediately after the attack, as well as being from fright. Had it not been sperm on her bottom, then maybe is was some foul material with her feces. All I know is that she has been in several fights and I want to kill those assholes that did this to our baby!

    1. That's scary stuff, Jacob. I don't blame you. I get the hose out whenever I see feral cats hanging about. Although recently, a young male as started to hang around and play with Miffy, which is extremely rare as Miffy tends to hate all other cats. This one though she seems to have adopted as a friend, as it quite quickly became friendly we're thinking of adopting it and getting it neutered. It's shown no signs of having any sexual designs on Miffy, though. It just hangs around, eats, and plays. It seems dead set on becoming a pet, which is a surprise because most of the feral cats I see are quite scary.

    2. I'm having the same issue with my cat. She is very scared of any cat, has been beat up several times and we've had lots of visits to the vet, cones on her head all that sort of thing. She was a stray and is not happy staying inside so I let her out but I try to watch as best I can. I have a cat trap and have trapped the feral cat that was doing the damage and took him to the SPCA. Lately though, there has been a male cat sitting on our shed and I notice they stare at each other, she does not run or scream as is her usual response as soon as she sees another cat. It almost looks as if he is courting her and she will lay out in the yard, looking almost coy and cute and they stare at each other. I am trying to get close to him as I too have thought of adopting him as she is so enamored by him, seems kind of cute. I will talk with the vet about it, see if I can get ahold of him to have him scanned in case he has a home. I think there is much about animals that we will never know or understand, that is what is so much fun with cats.

    3. http://cats.about.com/od/behaviortraining/a/neutered_cat_humping.htm

      interesting article

    4. Hey Diane, a similar thing is happening with me. Miffy (my cat) has a friend, a young male who was hanging around. I started to feed him and very slowly he began to trust me. At first he wouldn't come within ten feet of me, but gradually he got closer and closer. Over about three weeks I was able to stroke him, and now, a couple of months later I can pick him up and he absolutely loves me. I'm going to get him vacinated and neutered and then integrate him into the family. One thing I did to get him to get used to be being touched, was once I could sit near enough while he was eating I draped a glove on him while he ate. At first he hated it, but slowly he got used to it so I started to touch him with my hand.

  5. Best advice yet -average life 5 yrs outside, opposed to 20 for inside cats.
    If You Feed -You must not let breed! Only TNR works.

  6. This article was very helpful my cat is getting spayed in a few days! Very interesting comments. I'm hoping my cat will just not want to go outside. Not likely but fingers crossed x