When Does A Cat Show Signs Of Pregnancy?

When Does A Cat Show Signs Of Pregnancy
Is My Cat Pregnant? How to Find Out and When to Expect Kittens Reviewed by on May 08, 2021 You might have read stacks of books when you were expecting your own bundle of joy. But do you know what happens when your cat becomes pregnant? Don’t load Fluffy’s bowl with pickles and ice cream. Just treat them like the queen that they are – literally.

The process of a mama cat getting ready to have kittens is called “queening.” A female cat can get pregnant when they are as young as 4 months old, unless they have been spayed to prevent that. Queens can keep going into heat every 2 to 3 weeks from the spring through the early fall, making them ready to reproduce more often than not.

A cat’s pregnancy lasts about 63-65 days. So, a cat can have kittens when they are only 6 months old. The best way to find out is to make an appointment with your vet. They can confirm that kittens are on the way, and get an idea of how many, in a few ways:

Feeling your cat’s belly is sometimes useful but not always accurate. Ultrasound can confirm a pregnancy after day 16. Ultrasound cannot tell you how many kittens your cat is carrying. X-rays can determine the number of kittens to expect, but they are not always accurate, and they shouldn’t be done until your cat is at least 42 days pregnant – and generally not recommended until 55 days.

There are a few clues that you may notice, too. The cat’s belly will get big around 30 days after they mate. Another symptom that appears as the pregnancy continues, 2 to 3 weeks after they conceive, is their nipples enlarge and redden (also called “pinking up”).

It’s rare, but in the earliest stages of pregnancy, your cat may have “morning sickness” that might show up as a lack of appetite or vomiting. If that keeps happening, take them to the vet. With the surge of hormones and changes to their uterus, they may show signs of fatigue. This phase will eventually fade after those first few weeks pass.

Just like many other females in the animal kingdom carrying a bun in the oven (or for a cat, an average of 4 buns per litter), your cat may need extra food and calories while they are expecting. They’ll eat about 1.5 times their normal diet as their pregnancy draws to a close, so make sure they have constant access to their normal fare.

Your vet will probably recommend that you feed your pregnant cat kitten food or food that’s labeled for pregnant and lactating cats throughout their pregnancy and during the period they nurse their young one. Viruses can spread to kittens before they’re born, so keep up with your cat’s vaccination schedule.

If your pregnant cat is due for their regular vaccination and deworming/flea treatment or needs medication, check with your vet first to make sure the treatment is safe for them. It is best to vaccinate prior to breeding, as most vaccines are not safe to give during pregnancy.

  1. Make your home a comfortable place for the impending birth.
  2. If you normally let your cat go outside, stop that, to avoid them to go into labor during one of their walkabouts.
  3. About 2 weeks before the due date, you may notice your cat is acting different as they get into nesting mode.
  4. To help out, you can scan your home for a good birthing spot for them.

Find a medium-sized box with a low opening, and cover it with newspapers, old towels, and soft blankets to create a relaxing area for the mother and their future kittens. You should place the nesting box in a quiet corner of your house. Let your pregnant cat visit it often, before the birth, so they get used to the area and feel comfortable.

  • Eep in mind that you can guide your cat as much as possible and set up the ultimate birthing spot, but they are going to do what they are going to do.
  • If they want to give birth in a laundry basket, behind the garbage can, or in the back of your closet, they will.
  • When you notice that the cat is in nesting mode, take them to the vet for their final prenatal visit.

The vet will give you more information about how to prepare for the delivery, check on the mother and kitties’ health, and tell you want to do if there’s an emergency during the birth. Two clues that the big day is coming: Cats usually stop eating 24 hours before they give birth, and their temperature drops below 100 F.
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How soon can you tell if a cat is pregnant?

Spay your cat afterward – While the prospect of having a litter of kittens is exciting, it is highly recommended that you spay your cat after she has healed from giving birth. Spaying your cat is not only better for her overall health, it helps curb feline overpopulation.

Learn more about why a spayed cat will live longer, (And don’t forget to neuter your male cats, too!) How can I tell if my cat is pregnant without a vet? Signs that your cat is pregnant include weight gain, increased appetite, swollen abdomen, and change in nipple appearance. How long does it take to tell if a cat is pregnant? Swollen, pink nipples usually appear on a pregnant cat around week 3, while a distended abdomen will be visible around week 5.

Photo by Li Lin on Unsplash When Does A Cat Show Signs Of Pregnancy
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How do cats act in early pregnancy?

Monday March 31st 2014 Whether planned or accidental, to ensure your cat has a safe and healthy pregnancy it’s vital that you know how to spot the signs. These six signs of cat pregnancy will help you know you can expect to hear the pitter-patter of tiny paws. When Does A Cat Show Signs Of Pregnancy Morning Sickness One unmissable sign that your cat is pregnant is morning sickness. Just like pregnant humans, it is perfectly normal for pregnant queens (as an unsprayed female is called) to vomit during pregnancy – so be prepared for some extra cleaning up.

  1. While there’s no need to worry about a short period of vomiting, if it is frequent or you’re worried for your cat’s health you may want to seek medical help.
  2. Change in appetite Since your cat will now be eating not only for herself but a litter of kittens you can expect an increased appetite as the pregnancy develops.

However, you may be able to spot a pregnancy earlier, as many cats actually have a reduced appetite for a short period after conception. Changes to the body As you’d expect, a pregnant cat’s body goes through some changes during gestation. The nipples will become larger and pinker within about 3 weeks, while the abdomen should be noticeably bigger within 5-6 weeks.

Make sure not to agitate these areas as it could make your cat stressed and even risk the health of the unborn fetuses. Heat Cycles As the owner of an unspayed cat you’re no doubt familiar with how a cat in heat behaves: the loud yowls, the unusually high levels of affection, the licking of the genitals, and – if you’re unlucky – the marking of territory with urine.

If your queen’s heat cycles stop abruptly it could be a sign of pregnancy, but as cats are liable to experience false pregnancy it’s not a guarantee – a vet will help clear things up. Behavioral Changes A pregnant cat will be more content to stay indoors, looking for the attention of its owner rather than any tomcats.

Pregnant cats will appear less playful and may want to sleep even more than usual. While you’ll notice your cat is more subdued you may also have to put up with the occasional mood swing! Nesting If your cat starts disappearing only to be found in the quietest, most private parts of the home you may have a cat in the advanced stages of pregnancy.

This behavior is known as nesting – your cat is trying to find the best place to give birth to her kittens. Spotted the signs? If you think your cat is pregnant you should visit a vet – so long as it doesn’t cause undue stress to your pet – so they can determine for sure whether she’s pregnant and ensure she is healthy.

  1. Depending on how long your cat has been pregnant your vet may even be able to tell you how many kittens you can expect.
  2. More importantly, your vet will also be able to advise you on the best way to care for your cat during pregnancy and help make sure that the birth is as comfortable as possible.
  3. Prevent unwanted pregnancies While nobody could deny that kittens are amongst the cutest things on earth, the sad fact is that there are countless numbers of kittens and cats that desperately need a home.

Unless you can be sure your litter of kittens will all end up in good homes you should strongly consider having your cat spayed. If you have a tomcat you can still do your bit by having it neutered. As well as preventing unwanted pregnancies it can also reduce or even eliminate the risk of certain cancers, neutering a male cat will make it less aggressive and spaying a female will prevent the stress of being in heat.
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How long does a cat stay pregnant for?

How Long Are Cats Pregnant For? – The cat gestation period (cat pregnancy length) is about 63-65 days on average, or about two months.
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How many times does a cat have to mate to get pregnant?

At what stage of the estrous cycle is the cat able to get pregnant? – The queen can be bred at any time while in heat. Cats are induced ovulators, which means that the act of breeding stimulates the release of eggs from the ovaries. Most females require three to four matings within a 24-hour period for ovulation to occur.
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What does pregnant cat nipples look like?

2. “Pinking up” of the nipples – This is the earliest possible sign of pregnancy and can happen 15-18 days after ovulation. Prior to pregnancy, cat’s nipples are virtually invisible- they are flat, quite light in colour and almost always hidden by their fur.
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Do human pregnancy tests work on cats?

Will a Human Pregnancy Test Work on a Cat? – No, you can’t get your cat to pee on the stick. A human pregnancy test won’t indicate whether kittens are on the way. Those tests are calibrated to humans, and you need a species-specific test for your cat, Vahrenwald says.

Researchers, however, are working on a way to build an at-home cat pregnancy test that uses urine, similar to the human version that can be picked up in a drugstore. But until that point, testing to see if your cat is pregnant will require a blood draw, so you’ll need your veterinarian. There aren’t any over-the-counter test kits for you to use.

If you suspect your cat is pregnant, Vahrenwald recommends discussing your test options with your vet. Even better: Consider having her spayed before she gets pregnant. An unspayed cat can become pregnancy multiple times each year during her adult life, so the spaying procedure can help prevent cat overpopulation.
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Are cats clingy when pregnant?

3. Your Cat Could Become Annoyed – Let’s face it. Cats are creatures of routine, and pregnancy will disrupt that routine. If you’re giving them breakfast later due to your morning sickness, or if you moved their bed or litter box to an alternate location so that you can create a nursery, your cat could become grumpy and start hissing or scratching you.
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Do cats still mate if pregnant?

How do I stop unneutered males from coming near my female cat? – If your female cat isn’t neutered, she’ll actively look for an unneutered male when she’s in heat and any local tom cats will actively look for her. Female cats, even if they are already pregnant will still accept the advances of tom cats.

By mating with multiple toms, a female cat can give birth to kittens from different fathers in the same litter, so even if she’s already pregnant she may still look for a mate. The best way to keep tom cats away is to get your cat neutered. This will prevent any unwanted pregnancies and tom cats won’t take much interest in her.

There are also many other health benefits to getting your cat neutered, whether they are male or female. Read more in our neutering guide.
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Do cats get pregnant easily?

Written by Small Door’s medical experts No matter how isolated your female cat is, if she has not been spayed, there is always a chance she could get pregnant. Whether she is around an unneutered male in your home or briefly encounters one outside (cats can easily slip outdoors by accident), even a single encounter can result in pregnancy.
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How do female cats act after mating?

Cat Mating – When two cats want to mate the female will show her willingness by crouching down low and treading her back paws with her tail pulled to the side. The male cat will mount her and bite her neck. The female cat will yowl loudly as the barbs on the males penis will cause her pain.
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Should I stay with my cat while she gives birth?

What to Do When Your Cat Goes into Labor – Your cat is domesticated, so she may not have all of the instincts of a “wild” cat; however, most cats require no intervention at all while giving birth. In fact, your cat may purposely seek out solitude when she goes into labor.

Most cats would prefer to be left alone, and they definitely don’t want to be pet or touched while they are giving birth. It’s best to give your pregnant cat as much privacy as possible while also leaving yourself the ability to monitor the birthing process for any signs of issues or distress. Don’t be surprised if your cat decides to give birth in a location other than the “nest” you have prepared for mom and her kittens.

If this occurs, don’t be afraid to move the kittens to the box you prepared after they are born. It’s perfectly fine to pick up and handle newborn kittens; carefully touching them will not cause your cat to abandon her kittens or injure them.
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Can a cat get pregnant after 1 mating?

Can cats have kittens by multiple partners? – Yes, female cats can get pregnant by multiple partners. In fact, the number of fathers isn’t limited to just two males. Queens can have as many partners as there are kittens. For example, if your cat has 3 kittens, each kitten could have a different father.

The process by which cats have kittens by multiple partners is called superfecundation. That said, kittens with the same father can look completely different. Toms carry dominant and recessive genes, changing everything from a kitten’s eye color to the length of their fur. Female cats are usually sexually mature by around 4 months old and can have kittens as soon as they enter heat.

You’ll be pleased to hear that male cats won’t care if a litter has kittens from multiple fathers, as tomcats rarely stick around for parenthood. Related: Why Are All Calico Cats Girls?
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Can a cat get pregnant by 2 cats at the same time?

Do cats make good fathers to their litter of kittens? – This post has been written by Behaviour Manager, Nicky Trevorrow. At a time when many of us are celebrating Father’s Day, curious cat lovers may be wondering about feline fathers. Do male cats make doting fathers or are they absent? Certainly it is not something you commonly hear about. Photo by istock.com/virgonira The first thing to note about cats is that they are one of the few domesticated animals that have retained a large degree of control over breeding and mate choice. As such, this means that we often do not know who the father is.

Generally, it is only pedigree cats whereby a female or queen is taken to a male stud cat and therefore both parents can be identified. Of course, even pedigree cats can have accidental litters! One study in Southampton which looked at paternity in kittens discovered some interesting results. One of the households with a litter of kittens in the study had a male and female cat which were both unneutered.

However, when the paternity test results came in, none of the kittens were fathered by the male cat living in the house. In fact, the kittens were all fathered by a feral tom cat from a farm a few miles away – and this feral cat had actually fathered many of the kittens in the study! Clearly this virile male cat needed to be neutered in order to prevent the many unwanted litters. Chaka and her kittens were in the care of our Bridgend Adoption Centre. Photo by Sue Dobbs A little known fact is that kittens in a single litter can have different fathers. There could even be as many fathers as there are kittens! The ability to produce a litter of kittens fathered by more than one tom cat is called superfecundation.

If we consider that the trait for boldness, or how friendly or outgoing the cat is, comes from the father, this helps to explain the differences seen in a single litter not only in the variety of coat colour or length, but also the personality of the kittens. Studies have shown that friendly fathers tend to have genetically friendly kittens, whereas fearful fathers tend to produce more fearful kittens.

Of course, there are many other factors which also play a role in the overall sociability and personality of the kittens, including the amount of positive experiences with people and objects during the kitten socialisation period of two to seven weeks of age.
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How many kittens can a 1 year old cat have?

Between one and nine kittens will be born in a litter – most commonly four to six. First-time queens usually have a small litter size. When the birth is finished the mother will settle and allow the kittens to feed.
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What does a cat look like at 4 weeks pregnant?

Weeks 4 & 5 – By Weeks 4 & 5 each kitten is a small swelling in the womb. This gives the womb an appearance often described as a ‘string of pearls’. It’s at this stage that the vet is best able to feel the pregnancy. Detecting a cat pregnancy by feeling her belly is tricky and depends on timing.

Before around Day 28, the fetal swellings are too small to feel through her belly wall. After Day 35, each fetus is bathed in a ball of fluid and easily confused with food in the intestine. As the day’s tick passed and the expectant mother reaches Day 30 (early in Week 5) a noticeable external change happens.

This is known as ‘pinking up’ and is when her nipples become more obvious. It’s around this time the teeny-tiny kittens can move and flutter in the womb – although these movements are too small to be noticeable except on ultrasound. Later in Week 5, for the first time, you might stand back and think the cat’s belly looks swollen.
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Do cats behave differently when pregnant?

Your pregnant cat will also undergo many changes in behavior during the last 4 weeks of pregnancy. You may find that your cat becomes more affectionate at 4 or 5 weeks, even to the point of demanding attention from you.
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Do cats act weird when they get pregnant?

They’re More Affectionate Than Usual – Cats go through mood changes when they’re pregnant as well — but for them, it’s less about feeling gloomy, and more about feeling very, very affectionate. When pregnant, cats will crave love and attention. According to Purina, “your pregnant cat may act more maternal, meaning that she purrs more and seeks extra fuss and attention from you.” If you notice this, cuddle with her more! She’s going through a tough time!
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