Alley Cat Allies’ Beat the Heat® campaign urges communities to focus strongly on spay and neuter in the cold months to minimize the boom in kitten births in spring and summer known as “kitten season.” By ending a cat’s breeding cycle before it begins, fewer kittens are born outdoors…and fewer cats are brought into an animal shelter system that all too often kills them.

Spay and neuter clinics and shelters consistently see an increase in pregnant cats starting in March. In fact, over a 10-year period, the Northern Virginia clinic Alley Cat Allies founded, funded, and operated recorded that more than half (56%!) of female cats brought in during the month of March were pregnant.

A key component of Beat the Heat® is driven by this strategy: Since so many cats are pregnant by March and give birth in the warmest months, ramp up spay and neuter efforts in the winter to prevent those pregnancies out of the gate.

Don’t Wait to Spay and Neuter

Kittens as young as 4 months of age can go into heat, and give birth 2 months later. So as a critical component of Beat the Heat®, Alley Cat Allies encourages everyone to spay and neuter kittens as soon as they’re ready-at 2 months old, or as soon as they weigh two pounds. Pediatric spay and neuter not only benefits the health of kittens, but also aids the community in humanely managing community cat populations.

Through Beat the Heat, Alley Cat Allies promotes spay and neuter efforts and gives communities the tools and information to better care for and protect cats.