Having a male cat can be both comforting and sometimes stressful if your cat likes to wander, and these genders of cats can have some exciting features which can discern them from females.
Male cats are often referred to as Tom-cats which may have been popularized due to publications naming them so, and before this, they were called boars or rams, and some people may agree with these names.
Read on to find out more about these cats and how you can identify the gender of any cat, as there may be other considerations you need to make.
Are There Other Names For Male Cats?
Quite interestingly, if a male cat fathers a litter, it is referred to as a sire, and if your cat is neutered, it is referred to as a gib, and this distinction may be used because of the notable differences between the two.
For example, a neutered cat is less likely to be territorial and will prefer the indoors to wander around, as they won’t have the same hormonal changes as Tom cats, so they will be less aggressive.
That is why many people decide to neuter their cats to avoid them getting injured in a fight or reproducing, which can be frustrating for any owner.
This can be done when the cat is usually around 6-12 months old when they reach sexual maturity.
How To Tell The Gender Of A Cat
This is very simple and can be done by lifting the cat’s tail, and if the space under this looks like a colon (:), you have a male cat, and this is similar when sexing older cats, as they will have more apparent genitals and they are usually more prominent.
You can also identify the gender by looking at other features like their faces, as males tend to have fuller and more rounded faces than females and the cheek pads are more developed, giving them a jowly look.
However, neutered male cats can have a less masculine look and, instead, have more fragile faces like female cats, so it isn’t always easy to identify them in this way, and this is the case if the male cat was neutered during puberty.
You can also tell by their size, as male cats can be heavier and stockier-looking than females as they have broader shoulders and sturdier limbs.
Some colors are specific to certain genders, as more orange-colored cats are male than female.
Which Gender Is The Best As A Pet?
There aren’t that many differences between the genders, but you may experience different habits or behaviors that you may prefer over the other, so female cats can be docile and easier to handle.
At the same time, males can be affectionate once they have gotten used to you.
This will depend on whether your cat will be neutered or not, as it is generally recommended to do so as both genders can change in temperament when in heat, as males can spray.
At the same time, females can be very noisy, as both can be inconvenient.
If you want a more independent cat, you may want to get a female. On the flip side, they can also be quite moody or unpredictable sometimes, so you don’t want your cat to lash out at you if it’s having a bad day.
It can all be down to personal preference, as each has its own benefits and, if cared for right, can be docile and willing to be picked up or played with, so if you have a specific preference, you can go with it and see what your relationship is like.
Is Neutering A Male Cat Necessary?
Some may feel that a Tom cat may be less happy when they are neutered, and this isn’t the case as it can make them healthier, so they are less likely to pick up any diseases that an unneutered cat can get while wandering or getting into fights.
If you want to make your male cat an indoor one, you will want to get it neutered, as spraying can become an issue where you’ll have to deal with some strong and unpleasant smells, which can happen more often when seeking female cats in heat.
They can also be quite aggressive and unapproachable, so you want to do this if you want a more affectionate cat or if you have children around who could get an unexpected scratch or bite when they try to play with the cat.
What If I Want To Breed A Cat?
For this, you’ll have to keep both cats healthy and be sure that you can manage both cats that will go through many changes, as you may not be able to approach either cat during this process, plus it can be a timely and costly undertaking.
You also have to ensure that the female cat doesn’t get into contact with other Tom cats, as there may be an illness or genetic problem that gets passed down to the kittens, and for pedigree breeds, you will have to register.
However, it can be a very rewarding process as you have a litter of kittens that you could sell, but during the early stages of their development, they will have to be watched so you can ensure that they get the right amount of nutrients.
The Bottom Line
Male cats, as we have seen, can be docile and friendly, but there are the unneutered kinds that can bring a lot of mess and inconvenience that many aren’t prepared for, so the earliest you can get it neutered, the better.
With this, you can identify a male cat if you happen to come across one with its features, which can be hard to do in some instances, but in general, you can get a pretty accurate assessment.
At Love4Cats, our practice involves consistent collaboration with licensed veterinarians and reputable industry experts. However, it's important to note that the content provided on Excited Cats is not intended as veterinary advice. While we strive to enhance your understanding of feline care, the information presented on this blog should not replace professional veterinary guidance.