What Is A Female Cat Called?

A female cat goes by many names. You may simply name her a she-cat. You might only ever refer to her as a female. Whatever your preference, there are three used terms that refer to a female cat.

There are different names for the different stages of her life. What label you give her depends on her current status and her domestic relevance. Some female cats are used solely for breeding, while others exist as a part of a family as a domestic pet. 

We are taking a look at the most common names that you can call a female cat, how they came to be, and why they are still used today. 

By the end of the piece, there will be no doubt in your mind what a female cat can and cannot be called. 

The Most Common Name For A Female Cat

The most common name that you will find for a female cat is the term ‘Molly’.

The name Molly can be used for any female cat of any age or status. It is often used against the opposing ‘Tom’ cat for the male cat. While a male cat is called a Tom Cat, the female is just known as Molly, not Molly Cat. 

Cats of all ages like to play, they like exciting adventures, and they like to cause trouble as they go. As they grow up, they don’t change much.

All cats are troublemakers and bringers of fun. They are stubborn and fierce, and some who have had them as pets would even call them selectively indifferent. 

Molly is a name given to younger cats and females that have been spayed. Kittens, much like young humans, are very gender-neutral.

A newborn kitten and a very young kitten can be hard to tell the difference between whether it is male or whether it is female. 

This only changes when the first heat cycle comes and the cat’s interest shifts. The first heat cycle can bring an interest in having kittens that they never had before.

They suddenly shift from being a kitten to wanting to be a mother to them. For some Mollies, this can be as early as four months old. The average age is six months old. 

With a female cat that has undergone the spaying procedure, this name, Molly, will stick with her for life.

If she has not been spayed, she will become known as something else, which we will explore in a different section. After the operation is complete, and the chance of her having kittens is zero, the cat will forever be known as Molly. 

Spayed is the operation that a female cat can undergo in order to make it impossible for her to have kittens. It is the removal of her reproductive organs, and the consequence is that she is infertile and cannot procreate. 


Queen seems like the perfect name for a cat. Cats fancy themselves as royal, and there’s no doubt about it. They demand royal treatment, love to be waited on hand and foot, have high standards and expectations of their owners, and can often demand to be pampered as well.

Cat owners typically treat their cats like royalty too, doting on their every need and giving them the lifestyle of a King or a Queen. 

This translates into their domestic life as well. The female is in charge in the world of cats. She is typically the more dominant of the genders and can also be the better hunter. This is as true of domestic cats as it is in big cats such as lions and tigers.

That is why the term Queen is a fitting one that suits her to her core. A female in charge. 

Just like a Queen, she is in charge, and she knows it. Cats frequently display their dominance through displays of dominance, such as stealing and taking over food conquests and hunting endeavors. Other displays of dominance can be challenges of violence. 

A female cat that is ready to breed has been through her first heat session, or has not been spayed takes the name, Queen.

This is still applicable for after she has had her first litter of kittens. She stops being known as a Molly and starts being known as a Queen.

She is known as a Queen until she has weaned her kittens or becomes pregnant again. It is a very matriarch focussed term of address. 

All fun aside, the term Queen is actually relevant to the word for the process of giving birth like a cat. This is known as queening.


Aside from the terms Molly and Queen, there is also the name Dam. It is an out of date term that has somewhat been forgotten about, but it is still used from time to time. It is mainly used by established cat breeders.

It is used to refer to purebred female cats. They may be older and past the age of breeding, but still a purebred of high regard.  This particular branch of purebred will have been used for breeding purposes throughout their life. 

If a female cat fits this description, she will be referred to by her breeder as a Dam for the entirety of her life. Even after she has finished breeding. A cat will have many litters of kittens throughout her breeding career. It is a hard job. 

It is a guaranteed way to tell an avid and passionate breeder from a novice. They will definitely use the word Dam. It is shown as a sign of respect for the cat and everything they do and go through when breeding. 

Instead, the word dam is used in a more technical sense. If you are interested in cat breeding or have friends involved in cat breeding, there is a chance you have heard the term dam at some point or another.

They still use it as commonplace terminology. It is preferred over the terms, Queen and Molly. 


Female cats are a specialty in their own right. 

Whether they are a kitten, spayed or not spayed, used purely for breeding or a beloved domestic pet, there needs to be a way to make reference to them. 

Queen. Molly. Dam. Now you know how to use them and where to use them.

Courtney Trent
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