Sunday, April 14, 2024

How To Tell Kitten Sex

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What Does A Male Kittens Privates Look Like

A male cat typically has two private openings the anus on top and the genitalia directly below it. And for male cats, both the anus and the genital opening are in the form of a round hole just like a colon .

Additionally, you could check for the presence of a testicle, although this is usually not prominent in younger male cats. To do this, gently prod between the kittens anus and genital opening. If you feel tiny, pea-sized lumps, this indicates the presence of testicles, thus implying that the kitten is male.

How To Determine The Sex Of A Cat

This article was co-authored by Pippa Elliott, MRCVS. Dr. Elliott, BVMS, MRCVS is a veterinarian with over 30 years of experience in veterinary surgery and companion animal practice. She graduated from the University of Glasgow in 1987 with a degree in veterinary medicine and surgery. She has worked at the same animal clinic in her hometown for over 20 years.wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. This article has 21 testimonials from our readers, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 1,404,287 times.

Male and female cats and kittens look and act similarly, so it can be difficult to tell what sex they are just by watching their behavior. If you know what to look for, however, there are several key differences that will allow you to differentiate between the sexes. Newborn kittens will have immature genitalia, so wait until the cats are a few weeks old to determine their sex.

What Is My Kitten’s Gender

Determining the sex of a cat can be difficult at times, especially if there is no other cat with which to compare the anatomy. So how can you tell if you have a Merlin or a Misty, a Rex or a Ruby? Here are a few steps to tell what your kitten’s gender is

If you’ve established a good relationship with the cat, pick him or her up and lift its tail. If the kitten isn’t responding well, you may want to solicit the assistance of a friend or family member. If the cat still isn’t lifting its tail, try scratching it where the lower back meets its tail; most cats lift their tails if you do this to them.

Once the tail is up, you should have full view of the cat’s genitals and anus. A male will have a much greater distance between the genitals and anus than females ½ inch apart on a male kitten or over 1 inch apart on a male adult cat. Conversely, if the two are almost adjacent on a kitten or less than 1/2 inch apart on an adult, its a female.

Need some more help determining the sex of your cat or kitten? Check out the pics below.

Identifying Your Kittens Genitals

From two weeks of age, you will observe differences that will help you identify the sex of your kitten. 

For female kittens, the genitals will look like an upside-down exclamation point with the vertical vaginal slit just below the anus. Youll also observe a little spacing just between the slit and anus. 

If youre still unsure which your kittens genital is upon visual observation, pick one and place your finger and thumb gently on either side of the scrotum areas if you suspect its a male. 

You should be able to feel two small, hard, oval-shaped objects under the skin. These are the testes and at this point, they are nearly impossible to hold because of how they slide from your fingers. If the testes are present, then the kitten is most certainly a male. 

How To Tell The Gender Of A Kitten

How Do You Determine a Cats Sex?

So, if your momma cat just gave birth to some adorable bundles of fur, or youre taking in a stray from the great outdoors, how do you identify its gender?

While it might not matter much to you right now whether you have a Miss Snowflake or Mr Snuffles on your hands, knowing how to tell kitten gender is going to be helpful pretty soon! It allows you to watch out for potential health problems and prepare for any gender-based issues that may occur. 

Unfortunately, since your kittens are probably pretty small right now, it can be exceedingly difficult to identify their genitalia. Kitten genitals arent as developed as those of adult cats, making gender determination a tricky concept for even the more knowledgeable breeder. 

The good news? There are a few reliable ways to determine gender so that youll know how to tell a male kitten from a female kitten.

Steps To Sexing Kittens

Before you start attempting to identify the sex of your kittens, make sure that both mother and kittens are ready. Kittens should be at least two weeks of age and their mother should be made comfortable with you handling her babies.

Warning: do not attempt to do this on newborn kittens. It is easier and less stressful to sex them when olderat least two weeks of age.

Before you start identifying your kittens gender, make sure that youre well-prepared. Taking a few preparatory steps that will help you to ensure that its the right time and place.

  • Make sure that the mother cat is comfortable with you handling her offspring. You may wish to distract her by offering her tasty food and may even prefer to take her to a different room. This way, you can carry out the examination of the kitten without having to be wary of her response. With feral kittens, you may prefer to put the kittens in a box, take them indoors away from the mother cat, then return them as rapidly as you can.
  • Make sure that the room is warm. Young kittens can become chilled very easily if in a cold environment away from their mother.
  • If the kittens become agitated or upset at any time, stop the process and return them to their mother.
  • Carry out the inspection quickly and smoothly especially with very young kittens. The mother-kitten bond can be easily disturbed, and the aim is to return the kittens to the mother as rapidly as possible to avoid causing any upset.

Determining A Kitten’s Sex

Visual cues will help you determine if a kitten is male or female. While this distinction may be difficult to tell with newborns, it’ll become easier the older they get. Knowing the sex doesn’t make any difference in how you raise them, and only determines whether the kitten will eventually need to be spayed or to be neutered. 

How To Tell The Gender Of Your Kitten

The genitals of a cat are just below its tail. To tell the gender of a kitten, you will only have to lift his/her tail and do a visual exam.

Look for the anal hole that is below the tail and the urinary opening. The young male kittens have not yet developed the penis or testicles, but you can see that there is more distance between the anus and the opening where they pee, approximately 2 or 3 cm. In the case of female kittens, both openings are close together.

When the kitten is about a month and a half old, you can see that his testicles are more evident, and you can tell if it is female or male unequivocally.

Steps To Take Before Examining A Kittens Privates

Kittens are quite sensitive and fragile at the earlier stages of their life, and you cant just pick a new-born cat from its litter and start prodding around to determine its sex.

To ensure the examination of your kittens privates is a hitch-free process, there are things you need to put in place and these include:

  • Ensure the kitten is in a calm, docile mood preferably immediately after finishing a meal. 
  • Make arrangements to pacify and distract the kittens mother to prevent agitation a treat or a toy could help greatly.
  • Prepare a warm, non-heat seeking surface to place the kitten on while you examine its privates.
  • Make sure you dont separate a kitten from its mother for more than 10 minutes.

Is There Really A Personality Difference Between Male And Female Kittens

Neutering or spaying your Kittens will eliminate most of the sexual behaviours listed above. And your felines personality both male and female going forward, will depend on your behaviour towards them, and not gender. Other factors that may influence your kittens personality include its level of socialization and the nature of the environment.

How Can You Tell A Kittens Gender By Color

Apart from examining the genitals, you can tell a male kitten apart from a female kitten by looking out for noticeable differences in coat colors and patterns.

However, this is typically less reliable than checking out your kittens privates and is mostly useful for telling if a kitten is a boy or a girl from a picture.

Is It True You Can Determine A Cats Sex By Colour

It is true that almost all tortoiseshell and calico cats are female.

Research shows that only 1 in 1,000 calico cats are male.

This is because these colours require two X chromosomes to be present and females have two X chromosomes.

A male of these colours would have a genetic aberration of two X chromosomes and one Y chromosome.

People also say all ginger cats are male but according to Science Focus around three quarters are male and one quarter are female.

So, while it is more likely for a ginger cat to be male, its not 100% certain.

Ginger colouration is a less reliable indicator of sex in cats but generally ginger males are more likely to occur than ginger females.

This is something that provides a rough guideline, it is by no means foolproof and we highly recommend using other methods to find out the sex of your cat rather than judging solely by the colour of their fur.

How To Sex A Kitten


Now, were not going to beat around the bush; youre going to need a good look at your kittens rear end if you want any chance of identifying gender. At three to four weeks old, most breeders will say that a kittens genitals typically look like punctuation marks. 

If youve got a little lady, then youll see an upside-down exclamation point. The vertical vaginal slit is located just below the anus, with not much spacing between when the cat is on her back and facing you. 

A male kittens genitals look more like a colon, with the penis slightly further below the anus, with a little more spacing to accommodate the testicles. You might be able to see tiny lumps in the testicle area that will grow as your kitten ages. 

If youre feeling confused, try and remember it like this:

  • Females have a line

When Determining The Gender Of The Kitten

Now, while youre certainly curious about the sex of your kitten, especially if they your cat birthed them, you do not want to disrupt the mother-kitten bond in the first few weeks of life. This is because mother cats sometimes completely abandon their kittens and even stop feeding them altogether if theyre handled too much during this time.

Instead of separating them every time to check for the traits, wait a few weeks or even longer before you handle.

Also, when trying to determine the gender of your cat, you should ensure that you minimize the stress level. For a really young kitten, you want to start by gently picking him up, petting him and snuggling him close to your body while you examine the areas in question.  If you notice your kitten is panicky, you should leave the activity for another day. 

Are Male Or Female Kittens Friendlier

The general consensus is that male cats tend to be more affectionate towards humans while female cats, because of their mothering instincts, are more mean and initially less trusting of humans. This could be no further from the truth, and your kittens friendliness is ultimately down to its individual personality.

However, when your kittycat is ready to start mating, its a different ball game entirely.

Method 2 Of 2:determining Sex Through Other Differences

  • 1Check the color. If you have a litter of kittens, look at the color of the cats; some cat colorations are sex-specific and can help you determine the sex of the cat.
  • Cats that are calico or tortoiseshell colored are typically female.
  • More orange or ginger colored cats are male than female, but this is not an accurate way to determine a cat’s sex.XTrustworthy SourceWashington State University College of Veterinary MedicineLeading veterinary medicine training institution and biomedical research centerGo to source
  • 2Watch for sex-specific behaviors among intact cats. It’s easier to tell the sex of intact cats, since they naturally display the habits and characteristics of their sex.
  • Male cats that have not been neutered tend to be more aggressive than females and to have larger heads and thick skin. They like to roam, sometimes leaving for a few days at a time. They mark their territory by spraying it with strong-smelling urine.XResearch source
  • Female cats are less likely to spray their surroundings.
  • 3Watch for signs that the cat is in heat or is or has been pregnant. Female cats that have not been spayed will go into heat, a state of fertility that enables them to become pregnant, every 3-5 weeks during warm weather . Cats in heat display recognizable behaviors:
  • Making vocal sounds to attract males. The cat may sound like it is in pain or whining.
  • Moving the tail to the side to show genitalia or crouching into a receptive posture. The vulva may be secreting a clear discharge.
  • Why Does My Cat Push Out Its Penis

    If you notice these such cat penis infection symptoms, we recommend consulting a veterinarin immediately, especially if your cat is not peeing at all. A cat urine infection can affect the kidneys and result in kidney failure if not treated in time, which can be fatal.

    Cat urinary tract infections may require prescribed medication. This infection may also be caused by stress, and in this case, increased environmental enrichment is encouraged.

    How To Tell The Sex Of A Kitten: Examining The Genitals

    Many breeders describe the appearance of male and female kittens genitals as punctuation marks. We know this sounds a bit odd, but bear with us!

    A male kittens genitals look a little like a colon. The round anus sits at the top, with a gap between the anus and another rounded opening for the penis. Between the two sits the scrotal sac. This will be very small in young kittens, but its still possible to feel the testicles if you palpate this area gently. You should feel two small oval-shaped testes underneath the skin.

    As a male kitten develops, it becomes easier to see and feel the testes as they grow in size.

    Female kittens genitals look more like an upside-down exclamation mark. The round anus sits at the top and is closely followed by the vaginal slit.

    The gap between the genital opening and the anus is more pronounced in male kittens than females. You may find that as you examine different kittens, it becomes easier to tell the difference between males and females.

    Check Their Genital Features

    Of course there are some differences between male and female kittenâs genital features and you can tell it by checking directly. First, you need to make sure the kitten is warm because little cats are really vulnerable to cold.

    When you want to check the kittenâs genital features, do not place them on cold surface such as kitchen marble countertop or table top. You can place them on your lap and then gently lift its tail, do not holding the by its tail because it is very fragile.

    After you lift its tail, check the shape of their genital:

    Male kitten: Their genital appears like small circular hole and both the genital and anus openings look like a colon or . Female kitten: Their genital appears like tiny vertical slit and both the genital and anus openings look like a lowercase âiâ.

    Moreover, you need to check the distance between the openings. For male kitten, the distance is further below anus while the female one is closer and higher up to anus.

    In addition, although it is practically difficult to spot testicles on male kitten, you can still try to check whether there is pouch like a small bulge which is a scrotum on the male cat. But, do it gently because forceful check up will damage them.

    The Connection Between Kitten Coat Color And Gender

    According to Carlene Strandell, Director and Founder of Smitten with Kittens, a non-profit, foster-based kitten rescue that operates in Tallahassee, Fla., coat color may help you indicate the sex of the kitten. Three-colored cats such as and tortoiseshells are usually female. 

    Fun fact: calico and tortoiseshell cats are almost always females because those color patterns are caused by sex-linked genes. Similarly, about 3 in 4 orange tabby cats are always male.

    About Dr Pete Wedderburn Dvm

    How to determine a kitten

    Dr Pete Wedderburn qualified as a vet from Edinburgh in 1985 and has run his own 4-veterinarian companion animal practice in County Wicklow, Ireland, since 1991. Pete is well known as a media veterinarian with regular national tv, radio and newspaper slots, including a weekly column in the Daily Telegraph since 2007. Pete is known as “Pete the Vet” on his busy Facebook, Instagram and Twitter pages, regularly posting information on topical subjects and real-life cases from his clinic. He also write a regular blog at His latest book: Pet Subjects, was published by Aurum Press in 2017.

    How To Examine A Kittens Privates

    After putting the necessary measures in place, you can then proceed to examine the kittens privates in a bid to determine its sex. To do this:

    • Gently pick the kittycat from its litter, then pet and snuggle it close to your body to reassure it and eliminate fear and anxiety.
    • Place the kittycat on a non-slip surface preferably a large towel on a table
    • Gently lift the kittycats tail, taking care not to agitate it. Alternatively, you could gently scratch the kittycats back, where the tail meets the body, and the tail will be automatically lifted.

    How To Determine The Sex Of A Kitten

    This article was co-authored by Pippa Elliott, MRCVS. Dr. Elliott, BVMS, MRCVS is a veterinarian with over 30 years of experience in veterinary surgery and companion animal practice. She graduated from the University of Glasgow in 1987 with a degree in veterinary medicine and surgery. She has worked at the same animal clinic in her hometown for over 20 years.wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. This article received 41 testimonials and 85% of readers who voted found it helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 1,686,045 times.

    Unsure if you have a boy or girl kitten on your hands? The visible differences between young male and female genitalia can be more subtle than in adults. But when you know what to look for, sexing a kitten doesn’t have to be difficult. A vet’s opinion can help you feel more certain, though even veterinarians can occasionally mistake the sex of a kitten.

    I Am Considering Adopting A Cat But Was Told I Should Adopt Two Cats Why

    Cats are family-oriented and usually live with their relatives. Cats will sleep together, share common feeding areas, and groom one another within family groups. For this reason, cats often do well adopted in pairs.

    However, there is a caveat to this statement. Studies have shown families who adopt two kittens from the same litter are far more likely to keep those cats in their home long-term than families adopting a single kitten.

    Most adult cats, in contrast, are not very tolerant of other adult cats outside their family group. When adopting an adult cat, it may be best to add only one cat to the family.

    Why Do Cats Scream When They Mate

    After the tom cat mounts the female, when it withdraws its penis, the penil spines trigger a hormonal stimulus that is responsible for the ovulation of the cat. In addition, these spines allow the penis to not slip during intercourse.

    You may be wondering, is cat mating painful? No. These mating procedure simply triggers a neuroendocrine stimulus.

    For more, read why do cats make noise when mating?

    If I Already Have A Single Cat Should I Consider Getting Another Cat To Keep It Company

    If your cat is an adult and is established within your home as the only cat, then you should think carefully before introducing another feline. With time it should be possible to introduce a new cat into an existing household, but this may take days, weeks, or months for a successful gradual introduction. Even with great care some adult cats never accept another adult cat into the home.

    All of this being said, each individual cats personality and genetic tendency toward or away from sociability with other cats will ultimately dictate whether they enjoy living with other cats in a home environment, or if they prefer to be an only cat. Therefore, the decision needs to be made on a case-by-case basis. If your cat has been seen in the company of other cats without excessive fear or aggression, it may be possible to integrate a new cat into the household. However, if your cat shows hostility to other cats, or hisses, growls, or marks territory if they enter your yard or garden, then obtaining another cat is probably not a good idea.

    Method 1 Of 2:judging Genital Features

  • 1Make sure the kitten is in a warm, safe environment. Though it may not be obvious, young kittens are very vulnerable to the cold. Until they’re able to warm themselves on their own, they rely on the mother’s body heat for warmth. Separating a kitten from its mother can damage its health. To avoid adversely affecting the kitten or its health, follow these guidelines when handling the kitten and trying to determine its sex:
  • Handle the kittens in a warm, indoor area
  • Don’t separate young kittens from their mother for more than 5-10 minutes
  • Don’t lay kittens on “heat-sucking” surfaces like marble countertops and hardwood floors that will draw warmth out of their bodies
  • 2Gently lift the kitten’s tail. Checking the kitten’s genitals is the most direct way to determine its sex. A kitten may be reluctant to let you lift its tail and expose its genitals. Always be gentle. Handling a kitten roughly or using forceful motions can cause pain and may cause the kitten to lash out in self-defense. Avoid holding the kitten by its tail, which is very fragile.
  • Calmly pet the kitten for a few minutes before laying it gently on a soft, clean towel and lifting its tail. Be willing to back off and return it to its mother if it shows resistance.
  • Position the kitten in a standing position with its head directed away from you.
  • Lift–don’t tug or pull–the tail.
  • You can also try to get the kitten to voluntarily lift its tail by scratching where the back meets the tail.XResearch source
  • How Do You Determine The Gender Of A Kitten

    I was looking at a litter of kittens, and it looks like they are all girls. Is that possible? How can I tell for sure what gender the kittens are?

    • 3Part of me is like “you just LOOK!” but then I remember how I was convinced my cat was a girl for the first week or two I had him! Jul 20 ’14 at 18:29

    It’s a bit tricky to tell male from female when kittens are young. It’s very easy to tell when they’re born, but they quickly grow more fur and it gets trickier. As they get older, the testes get larger and it gets easier to tell. At 6 weeks old it’s very subtle but possibly visible. At 12 weeks old it’s a small, but reasonably obvious, bulge. At 8 months old it’s blatantly obvious. Between 1 day and 10-12 weeks old it’s tricky)

    I believe it’s possible for a litter to be all females, but it’s pretty unlikely.

    When they get their first vet visit, the vet will typically identify the gender as part of the routine examination. That’s the surest way to know, since vets are very experienced with kitten gender identification.

    If you have a litter, it’s going to be a bit easier, since you’ll most likely have both genders to look at.

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