Experienced and professional animal trainer provide their insights in answering this question :
A. It’s not too late to have her spayed and she might continue to go into heat for a few more years.

How to Identify Common Pet Problems ?

Our sources include academic articles, blog posts, and personal essays from experienced pet care professionals :

Is there a point where a cat is too old to be spayed or neutered? The honest answer is no. No matter what the age, with caution and preparation, even cats in their late teens can successfully be altered. In most every instance, the veterinarian will require blood work before doing surgery on a mature cat.
For most, this occurs when they`re around 4 to 6 months old. From then on, the cat will continue to experience a heat cycle every few weeks, a period that can last anywhere from a few days to over a week. If you haven`t spayed your cat, she will continue to go into heat for the rest of her life.
However, if your cat is healthy, these procedures can be done at any point in their life. Therefore, it is never too late to spay or neuter your cat; even healthy cats who are in their teens can undergo this procedure without risk.
It is not uncommon for unspayed cats to suffer from ovarian cysts and uterine infections due to constantly fluctuating hormone levels. Spaying your cat will reduce the risk of mammary cancer as she ages. Spaying your cat will not impact her ability to grow and does not cause your cat to get fat.
The rule of thumb is that at about age 7, a cat is considered to be middle-aged. Cats aged 8 to 14 are senior, and cats aged 15 and older are geriatric. As you can see, a seven year old cat is well into his `forties`.
Each heat generally lasts several days with the average length being seven days, although it can range from 1 to 21 days. If the queen (an intact female cat) is not mated during estrus, she will go out of heat for a short period of time, usually about seven days, but it can range from 2 to 19 days.
Being in heat is not typically painful for cats, although they may feel some discomfort or agitation. When your cat in heat makes a loud, howling sound, you may assume they`re in pain. But rest assured, the increased vocalization (known as “caterwauling”) is just your cat`s way of attracting a potential suitor.
Cats with functioning ovarian tissue typically go into heat seasonally, going through multiple cycles in the spring and summer. “Cats with functioning ovarian tissue typically go into heat seasonally, going through multiple cycles in the spring and summer.”
Spaying may cause weight gain. Some cats may gain weight after being spayed. Unspayed animals typically have a strong mating desire and can expend a lot of energy seeking a mate and reproducing. Without this energy burden, your cat may eat the same amount but not burn off as many calories.
It is recommended that all non-breeding cats be sterilized. Several health benefits are associated with spaying your cat. First, spaying eliminates the risk of ovarian and uterine cancers. Second, breast cancer is the number one type of cancer diagnosed in intact (unspayed) female cats.
Females that have been spayed are less aggressive and less stressed than unspayed female cats (2). They have had their ovaries and uterus removed, so won`t go into heat. This means they won`t yowl to attract male cats to your home. Cats that have had gonadectomy operations are more affectionate toward humans (3).
Female dogs can get much more life threatening conditions if they are not spayed. They can get an uterine infection, called pyometra, that requires emergency surgery. If this condition is untreated or surgery is not done as soon as possible, the infection gets into the bloodstream and becomes fatal.
Older cats tend to be less active and playful, they may sleep more, gain or lose weight, and have trouble reaching their favorite places. Don`t chalk up health or behavior changes – often gradual – to old age, however.
The Task Force has designated four age-related life stages (Table 1): the kitten stage, from birth up to 1 year; young adult, from 1 year through 6 years; mature adult, from 7 to 10 years; and senior, aged over 10 years.
Many cats begin to show age-related physical changes by the time they are between 7 and 10 years old, and most will have by about 12 years old. People often think that one “cat year” is equivalent to 7 “human years”, but this isn`t quite accurate.
The first step is a thorough checkup by your veterinarian. Numerous diseases can cause a cat to feel hunger, thirst, or pain, all of which can lead to excessive meowing. Cats also can develop an overactive thyroid or kidney disease, both of which can result in excessive vocalizations. Attention seeking.
Some cats exhibit what is called “silent heat.” The cats are in heat, they develop follicles on their ovaries and are fertile, but they show no behavioral signs of being in heat. These cats will allow a male to mate with them. Silent heat is more commonly seen in cats who are lower down in the social hierarchy.
Typically, female cats will start to go into their estrus cycle or heat cycle by six months of age. Certain environmental factors like temperature and access to potential mates can cause it to happen sooner or later.
While your cat is on heat it`s likely she will become very affectionate, `flirty`, start `calling`/meowing loudly (it can even sound like she is in pain), rolling around, arching her back and moving her tail to one side. She will try hard to find a male cat, and male cats will be equally keen to reach her.
Health issues. Female cats which are not neutered are more likely to suffer from pyometra (infection of the womb) later in life and with mammary tumours. Queens with infectious diseases may pass these on to their kittens. Pregnancy and birth are also not without risk. Wildlife issues.
Benefits of Spaying (females):

Less desire to roam. Risk of mammary gland tumors, ovarian and/or uterine cancer is reduced or eliminated, especially if done before the first heat cycle. Reduces number of unwanted cats/kittens/dogs/puppies. Helps dogs and cats live longer, healthier lives.

Ovariohysterectomy, or the typical “spay”: the ovaries, fallopian tubes and uterus are removed from a female dog or cat. This makes her unable to reproduce and eliminates her heat cycle and breeding instinct-related behavior. Orchiectomy, or the typical “neuter”: the testes are removed from a male dog or cat.
It is safer for the pets to have completed their initial set of vaccines before the surgery. Unvaccinated pets run the risk of contracting illnesses from other animals in the veterinary clinic and also have a higher chance of infection after the surgery.

Relevant Questions and Answers :

the most relevant questions and answers related to your specific issue

Q. Why do cats meow?
ANSWER : A. Cat parents often wish they could better understand what their favorite feline friends want or desire. A cat’s meow can be interpreted in many different ways and can indicate an array of feelings and needs. Here are some of the most common reasons for your cat’s vocalizations:

1. Greeting- Many cats will meow as a greeting when you enter your home or walk into a room. Cats will also meow at another cat or animal in the household to extend a hello and acknowledge the other animal’s presence.

2. Attention – An exuberant meow followed by leg rubbing or another attention seeking behavior may indicate your cat is looking for some quality time spent together. Some petting or rubbing behind the ears may be in order.

3. Hunger – A meowing cat is often a hungry cat. This is one of the most common reasons for a cat to vocalize to their owners. A cat will meow to get your attention at feeding times or even when they want extra food.

4. Sickness – A sick or hurt cat may begin to meow excessively, warranting a visit to the veterinarian. There are numerous reasons for a cat in distress to meow—whether it is related to an upset stomach, an injured leg or a urinary blockage. These meows should be carefully investigated.

5. Entering or leaving – Most cats will vocalize when they want to be let in or out of a room. You may notice when you are in the bathroom or behind the closed door of a room that your cat begins to meow, scratches at the door, and often reaches its paw under the door. This is a clear indication that the cat wants to be where you are.

6. Angry – An agitated cat may meow to warn their owner or another household pet that they are upset and would like to be left alone. This angry meow may increase in sound volume as the cat becomes more stressed or agitated. Often a cat will exhibit this type of meow at the veterinary office when they are unhappy with their examination or restraint.

Each feline is different and so are their vocalizations. Learn to understand the variety of meows your cat uses on a daily basis. This will help you develop a better relationship with your cat and help them live a more trusting and happier life.

Q. i believe my cat is pregnant but showing signs of being in heat
ANSWER : A. Cats are induced ovulators, meaning they will continue to go into heat until they are bred, or spayed (reproductive organs removed). If your cat is showing signs of being in heat (excessive yowling, presenting her rear to you for inspection, attempting to get out or other cats hanging near your house) and you don’t want kittens, it is best to have her spayed. Most cats are also semi-seasonal in their heat cycle meaning they will more likely be in heat through Spring-Summer than in Fall-Winter.

Pregnancy in cats lasts about 60 days. Signs of pregnancy may include weight gain, increased appetite, nipples that become pronounced or “leak” and seeking nesting areas to deliver kittens. If you saw that your cat was in heat, or had her mated, you can use the date she was bred to determine when she may be due for kittens. Your local vet can help determine if she is indeed pregnant and can also take an X-ray to determine the number of kittens present if your cat is nearing her due date. Be sure to feed mom a kitten formula in the last few weeks of her pregnancy and during nursing as it will help provide extra beneficial nutrients for both mom and babies.

If you do not want kittens, some very early term pregnancies can be aborted with spaying, otherwise spaying mom is usually done when kittens are weaned from their mom.

Q. My cat continues to scratch on furniture and carpets. He has plenty of scratching posts around the house. Please help!
ANSWER : A. Scratching is a natural behavior in cats that can be frequently frustrating for pet owners who want to keep their furniture from being shredded on a constant basis. The texture of furniture and carpet is very appealing to cats and this why they frequently choose to spend their time on this activity as opposed to playing with their own cat toys. Here are some suggestions to help curb this unwanted behavior:

1. Purchase a cat scratching post or cat tree that is covered in carpeted or textured material. Place it in an appealing spot that your cat would be inclined to spend time (eg. in the sun). You can also place catnip on the scratching post or cat tree to make your cat even more interested in the new object.

2. You can utilize double sided tape on the ends of the furniture because you cat will not like the sticky feeling and will learn to not scratch in that region. Use the tape that has a lighter adhesive in order to prevent any permanent damage. Other materials, such as aluminum foil or bubble wrap can also be placed on the furniture to discourage the scratching.

3. Keep nails trimmed short by either learning to do this on your own at home or using a veterinary technician, or groomer. Nails can usually be trimmed every 6-8 weeks.

4. Redirect the unwanted behavior. If your cat begins scratching, use a favorite or new toy to distract the cat from the scratching. Give your cat positive praise for not scratching.

5. As a last resort you can use a spray bottle full of water to spritz your cat when he or she is scratching inappropriately at your furniture. Generally, cats do not like water and this will discourage them from continuing the behavior.

Have patience with your cat because it can takes time to understand this is an unwanted behavior and that furniture is not another toy for them to use. You can always consult your veterinary or veterinary behaviorist to help with ideas or further solutions to this problem.

Read Full Q/A … : I found Pickle on

Q. My female cat is now seven years old and has not been spayed. Will she continue to go into heat? Is it too late to have her spayed?
ANSWER : A. It’s not too late to have her spayed and she might continue to go into heat for a few more years.

Read Full Q/A … : Expert Q&A – The Daily Cat

Q. My cat will not stop going to the toilet on my carpet, bed, washing pile etc.. Also uses its litter box occasionally? I don’t understand why this is?
ANSWER : A. Inappropriate elimination in cats is often a behavioral problem rather than a medical problem, so the first step is to have him seen by your vet to eliminate any kind of illness or condition as a cause for his eliminating outside the box.
If medical issues are ruled out, take a look at other reasons. Has there been a lot of unusual activity? Has you cat been left at home or boarded? Is the litterbox in a busy area? Has anything happened recently in this area to make him reluctant to use it again? Is there another cat, pet or person that is preventing him from getting to the box? Have you changed it from a hooded to an open box, or vice versa? Is it big enough? Have you changed the type or brand of litter? Is there something attractive about the spot he uses? Cats dislike disturbances to their routine and may act out to express their dissatisfaction.
The general rule is one litter box per cat in the household, plus one. That way each cat can have a place of their own to go in case the box is occupied or another cat has claimed it as territory. They should be scooped daily, if not more often and changed completely weekly, washed with soap and water only. You can offer one kind of litter in one box and another kind in another to see if there is a preference. I don’t recommend the crystals, it makes a hissing sound when wet that startles some cats and make them reluctant to use it again. The litter boxes should be located in a quiet, low-traffic area so that the cat can use them in peace. Make sure any other pets or people aren’t giving them a hard time around or in the litter box. It may take some investigation and experimentation to find your cat’s preference and accommodate him so that everyone is satisfied with the situation. And, when cleaning up pet accidents, don’t use any cleaner containing ammonia. This leaves behind a scent similar to urine.

Q. My cat is pooping outside of the litter bix. He is 2 1/2. He did this as a kitten. It stopped then started about 3 months ago. Litterbox is clean.
ANSWER : A. Inappropriate elimination or house soiling can be a frustrating problem but with a bit of detective work on your part, there is hope. First, before deciding that this is a behavioral issue, any medical problems (diarrhea, constipation, fecal incontinence, pain on defecation, etc.) need to be ruled out and/or treated. If your cat receives a clean bill of health from your vet but is still eliminating outside the litterbox, then we need to consider that something about the box itself might be aversive to your cat. Cats can be quite finicky about their litterbox and toileting habits. Below I have listed common recommendations and cat preferences for litterbox use. Review the list and make any changes that could account for your cat’s aversion to defecating in the litterbox:
* Soft, fine-grained clumping litter (vs, coarse-grained, non-clumping litter)
* Unscented
* 1 – 1 1/2 inch depth (especially older cats or cats with hip problems)
* Larger pans (especially for large cats) – want to get whole body inside – poop just outside the box might mean the box is too small
* Open, non-hooded
* At least one shallow side to get in and out easily
* Easy to get to – not hidden away, preferably in areas they spend time in or near – and not near appliances that make scary, unpredictable noises (washers, dryers, refrigerators)
* Scoop minimum 1X/day – preferably 2
* Clean the litterbox with soap and water and put in fresh scoopable litter at least once/month (instead of just continuously adding)
* Some cats prefer to urinate in one box and defecate in a separate box, so you may need 2 boxes even if you just have 1 cat. Multi-cat households should have 1 box/cat plus 1 extra.

Q. Our cat of six years has on two separate occasions has defecated on the living room rug and recently pee’d on the skirt of the Christmas tree.
ANSWER : A. Inappropriate elimination in cats is often a behavioral problem rather than a medical problem, so the first step is to have him seen by your vet to eliminate any kind of illness or condition as a cause for his eliminating outside the box.

If medical issues are ruled out, take a look at other reasons. Has there been a lot of unusual activity? Has you cat been left at home or boarded? Is the litterbox in a busy area? Has anything happened recently in this area to make him reluctant to use it again? Is there another cat, pet or person that is preventing him from getting to the box? Have you changed it from a hooded to an open box, or vice versa? Is it big enough? Have you changed the type or brand of litter? Is there something attractive about the spot he uses? Cats dislike disturbances to their routine and may act out to express their dissatisfaction.

The general rule is one litter box per cat in the household, plus one. That way each cat can have a place of their own to go in case the box is occupied or another cat has claimed it as territory. They should be scooped daily, if not more often and changed completely weekly, washed with soap and water only. You can offer one kind of litter in one box and another kind in another to see if there is a preference. I don’t recommend the crystals, it makes a hissing sound when wet that startles some cats and make them reluctant to use it again. The litter boxes should be located in a quiet, low-traffic area so that the cat can use them in peace. Make sure any other pets or people aren’t giving them a hard time around or in the litter box. It may take some investigation and experimentation to find your cat’s preference and accommodate him so that everyone is satisfied with the situation. And, when cleaning up pet accidents, don’t use any cleaner containing ammonia. This leaves behind a scent similar to urine.

Q. My cat started to pee outside the litter box. What should I do?
ANSWER : A. Inappropriate bathroom use in cats is often a behavioral problem rather than a medical problem, so the first step is to have him seen by your vet to eliminate any kind of illness or condition as a cause for his defecating outside the box.

Once medical issues are ruled out, it’s time to take a look at other explanations. Has there been a lot of activity that wasn’t normal? Were you away and your cat was left at home or boarded? Is the litterbox located in a busy area? Has anything happened recently in this area to make him reluctant to use it again? Is there another cat, pet, or person that is preventing him from getting to the box? Have you changed it from a hooded to an open box, or vice versa? Have you changed the brand of litter or kind? Or is there something about the spot he has chosen to use that is attracting him in some way? Cats dislike disturbances to their routine and may act out as a way of expressing their dissatisfaction.

The general rule of thumb is one litter box per cat in the household, plus one. That way each cat can have a place of their own to go in case the box is occupied or another cat has claimed it as territory. They should be scooped at least daily, if not more often and changed completely on a weekly basis, and washed with soap and water.

You can also offer one kind of litter in one box and another kind in another to see if there is a preference. I don’t recommend the crystal kind, since it makes a hissing sound when wet that can startle some cats and make them reluctant to use it again.

The litter boxes should be located in a quiet, low-traffic area so that the cat can use them in peace. Make sure other pets or people aren’t giving them a hard time around or in the litterbox. It may take some investigation and experimentation to find your cat’s preference and accommodate him so that everyone is satisfied with the situation.