Everything you need to know about your cat’s penis
The cat penis is a rather elusive organ in your cat. This is mostly because, one, they are small (sorry, cat) and, two, it is concealed and well-protected. So, unlike dogs, cats do not walk around prancing their manhood.
Anatomy of the cat penis
Let us star by saying that mating is an excruciatingly painful experience. This is because the cat penis is barbed. The design of barbs on a cat penis is a form of reproductive competition.
The barbs work as brushes to remove any competitor´s semen. This is why you see that when it comes to mating, the female cat does not seem too happy about it. To this, add the fact that the tomcat will usually bite on the back of his partner, making the whole experience pretty unpleasant for her.
They are not born like this
Kittens are not born with a barbed penis. It is during their adolescence that they develop them. This is at about 6 months old when they are ready to reproduce. In fact, if a cat is neutered before 6 months old, he will not develop barbs.
Why is the cat penis barbed?
There are several purposes for the development of barbs in a cat´s penis.
- It stimulates ovulation in the female cat. When females are in heat, they do not ovulate, not even prior to mating. The barbs in the male´s penis stimulate the female´s vagina causing her to release an egg. This painful process is necessary.
- It is important to note that this ovulation process starts 20 to 50 hours after mating. This gives a chance to other suitors to remove rival semen out of the womb. So, basically, if a female cat in heat has had several suitors, each one of them has tried to remove competitor´s semen. Since they do not get all of it, it is common for a litter to have more than one father.
- Another purpose of barbs is to prevent the female from escaping to ensure an effective reproductive process. Besides this, the tomcat pins down the female by biting her back.
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