How To Tell If A Cat Is Pregnant?
Cats, like other animals, get pregnant from time to time. This is how they increase their catty population. Pregnancy in cats is a natural and regular occurrence. Indeed, cat owners are always excited when they discover that their cats are pregnant.
Often, their excitement grows into anxiousness as they wait to see their cats giving birth to kittens. Cat pregnancy may not be noticed until a few weeks into their time. Many cat owners do ask, is my cat pregnant and how do I tell it so? Well, this post shall uncover some of the tell-tale signs of pregnancy in cats, among other related details.
How Can You Tell If Your Cat Is Pregnant?
Since it may take some few weeks before a cat’s pregnancy become physically noticeable, cat owners must have a way to know beforehand if their cats are pregnant. There are some signs to look out for if you suspect that your cat is pregnant.
It is essential that you know about your cat’s pregnancy early enough. This is because it will give you enough time to assist her during this crucial period. Indeed, it will surely make her pregnancy a happy affair for you and your cat.
Days Before The Pregnancy
Before a cat becomes pregnant, she usually shows signs of being in season or in heat. This may be about once every two or three weeks. This depends mainly on your cat’s breed.
‘Queening’ is the term used to describe a female cat in the preparation of getting kittens. Depending on the breed and some variables, a female cat often gets pregnant when she’s about four months old. Needles to mention, you may not cherish the idea of having kittens just yet. In this case, there are various treatments the vet can offer to counter or prevent pregnancy.
The gestation period for a cat is between 63-67 days. But variations in gestation period of between 61-72 days do occur.
The following are some tell-tale signs that your cat is actually pregnant.
Checking With Your Vet
The best and the safest means of knowing is by confirmation by your reliable vet. If you suspect your cat is pregnant, take her to your vet to be examined. This will help dispel any speculation and guessing.
Your veterinarian is an expert and knows how to feel the abdomen gently. Even better, he may have to perform an ultrasound or hormonal test on your cat to confirm the pregnancy.
The Pinking Up Signs
If you want a Do-It-Yourself approach, look out for the ‘pinking up’ signs on the nipples of your cat. This is manifested in the form of enlarged nipples that are red in appearance.
The Size Of The Tummy
If the size of your cat’s tummy begins to increase and swell, then you can conclude that she’s pregnant already. But, you should only conclude so if you are sure that your cat is not sick in any way. It is advisable not to touch or press her tummy.
This is to avoid injuring her or her unborn kittens. In advanced pregnancy, you can notice that her tummy now drops.
Your cat may start to vomit, an occurrence akin to ‘morning sickness’ in humans. However, you should not use vomiting to infer that he’s pregnant expressly. Be sure that she has no health issues.
Other signs that your feline friend is pregnant include;
- Sleeping more than before and curling up in a quiet place.
- Calling for more affection than usual.
- Noticeable increase in weight. Weight gain of about 1-2.5kg may occur. This depends on the number of kittens in the tummy.
- The appetite of your cat shoots up. She needs more food to keep herself and the kittens healthy. But make sure you don’t overfeed her.
Now That Your Cat Is Pregnant, What Are Your Options?
Now that you have confirmed that your cat is pregnant, there are a few options available to you. Do you still want to keep your cat and her expected kittens? Do you want to give in to an abortion? Or you want to give her out to adoption?
You need to consider the options and make the best possible choice. Remember, your decision should be in line with your household.
If you decide to give your pregnant cat out for abortion, then consult your veterinarian for its possibility and viability. Alternatively, you may want to give your pregnant out for adoption in an animal rescue center near you.
However, if you decide to keep your cat and her ‘incoming’ kittens, then you have to be ready for additional welfare responsibilities of these new additions to your family. Cost is one consideration that you cannot wish away.
Helping A Pregnant Cat During Labor
Naturally, your cat would have psychologically prepared herself during the pregnancy for the process of childbirth. But you still need to be on the constant watch out for the end of her term. You need to adequately prepare her house for her comfort and that of her kittens. You have to be on standby to assist her in case she needs extra help.
Some cat owners prefer to take their cats to the vet when her full term is near. Your cat’s behaviors change when it’s 2 weeks to her full term. She may start exhibiting the ‘nestling mode’ in search of a safe and comfortable place to have her kittens. Nestling mode is the cat conscious way of preparing herself for birth.
Some Strange Traits Of Some Pregnant Cats
- If a cat is starved during pregnancy, she can eat up some of the kittens at birth. This is why it necessary to feed your cat well during pregnancy and after immediate childbirth.
- No discriminatory mating for cats. Cats of the same family can mate.
- Cats that experience natural abortion may eat up the aborted fetuses, especially if you do not offer immediately.
- A cat may have what is called ‘false pregnancy.’ This occurs when she misses a heat cycle; which makes the owner believe that she’s actually pregnant.
Preparation For The D-Day
Prepare a right place for her birthday. Typically, a pregnant cat would start scanning for a safe place for delivery. But you can help her locate a proper area. Pregnant cats are secretive in matters of childbirth, so they always prefer to search out a place of their choice.
Place a box in a corner or a safe place where you think your cat may like. Stuff the box with soft towels, newspapers and other fluffy materials comfortable enough for the mother and her kittens.
The last two tipping clues that your cat was almost ready include – she stops eating at least 24 hours before birth. At this time her body temperature drops below 100 F.
Remember, allowing your cat to be pregnant and retain the pregnancy is purely your decision. If you don’t cherish having kittens, there are a various treatment that the vet offers. These are meant to prevent your cat from being pregnant.
You May Also Interested In:
- How Many Nipples Do Female Cats and Male Cats Have?
- Where Is The Best Place For Kittens Sleep?
- Do Cats Dream?
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