When Is Kitten Season? Everything You Need to Know

Published on March 29th, 2024

During kitten season, animal shelters see a large influx of kittens because of increased birth rates. While kitten season may sound harmless, this influx of animals can overwhelm shelters, strain supply budgets, and lead to overcrowding.

In this blog post, we’ll discuss what kitten season is, when cats typically give birth, and what you can do to help your local shelter during this time.

What Is Kitten Season?

Kitten season marks the time between early spring and late fall when outdoor cats mate and give birth to kittens. Although cats can have kittens at any time during the year, it’s more common in warm weather.

During this time, you’re more likely to find litters of kittens living outside. Shelters are also often overwhelmed with strays and young kittens.

When Does Kitten Season Start?

Kitten season typically starts in April and continues through late October. This is because cats are more likely to mate and give birth when it’s warm out. During this time, the weather is less harsh, and feral cats typically have better access to food sources.

When Do Cats Have Kittens?

If a cat isn’t spayed to prevent pregnancy, she’ll go into heat every 2-3 weeks throughout the year. During this time, she may mate and become pregnant. Female cats can get pregnant from as young as four months of age, and they typically remain fertile for about 7-8 years.

While it’s more common for cats to breed between April and October, they can become pregnant at any time of the year. Each pregnancy typically lasts 63-65 days, or about two months.

Making the Most of Kitten Season – Ways to Help

Spaying or Neutering Your Kitten

The best way to help with overcrowding in shelters is to spay or neuter your new kitten. This is because cat overpopulation puts a large strain on animal shelters during kitten season.

If you’ve recently adopted a cat or kitten, visit a trusted veterinarian as soon as possible to have them spayed or neutered. The veterinarian will also examine your new kitten for any health issues and provide vital vaccines and medications.

Helping Stray Kittens

If you find kittens living outside during kitten season, there are a few things you can do to protect them and the mother cat. If the kittens are over two months old, healthy, and friendly, consider caring for them until you can arrange for an adoption. You can also call your local shelter and ask if they participate in a trap, neuter, return program. These types of programs help reduce the number of unneutered cats out on the streets.

Fostering Kittens

During kitten season, you can help shelters by signing up for a kitten foster program. Most shelters provide everything you need to care for a litter of kittens. While the idea of fostering may seem overwhelming, it’s an easy way to support shelters and help these little ones thrive without making a long-term commitment.

Adopting a Kitten

Adopting a kitten is a decision that shouldn’t be taken lightly. However, if you’re ready for a new companion, adopting a kitten or two can lighten the burden for shelters that are overwhelmed with new cats.


Animal shelters are typically in greater need of volunteers during kitten season. Reach out to your local shelter or humane society to see how you can help.


You can help your local shelter with kitten season by donating items like bedding, litter boxes, and kitten food. Before you purchase anything, reach out to your local animal shelter and ask what specific products and brands they need.

Trusted Veterinary Care For Your New Kitten

If you’ve recently adopted a new furry friend, don’t skip out on the care they need! Sign up for our vet’s kitten package to ensure your kitten starts off on the right paw with the proper vaccinations.

Call (773) 725-0260 to book your first appointment.

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