Bringing kittens into the world is a complex activity if you want to do it right. Knowing the stages, symptoms and other characteristics of the pre and post stages, as well as the period itself, you will be able to ensure the well-being of your cat and her offspring.
How to know how long the pregnancy lasts in cats ?, and beyond, if my cat is pregnant or not? You may perceive that your feline is expecting kittens but you are not sure, as well as the existing measures and stages that she will go through until she gives birth to her puppies.
In this post we indicate the main symptoms and characteristics during this stage.
The reproductive cycle in cats
A cat can already have litters four months after birth, on this date she would already come into heat. Felines do not experience a ” cat menopause ” or anything like that, they can get pregnant until a very old age, that is, their life cycle and reproduction go almost hand in hand.
Their reproductive cycle begins with a stage called proestrus , which lasts from one to three days. After that follows the stage of heat itself, called estrus , (if you wonder how long a cat’s heat lasts, it is from one to 21 days), which will be evident because your feline will be very emotional, constantly asking for attention and turning around and turns on the floor, as well as making some movements that some inexperienced feline companions might consider as a manifestation of pain.
During copulation in cats
When a cat wants to copulate with her, her response will be expressed bodily: her ovaries will release eggs into the uterus. It is then that the male mounts on the female and usually bites her neck while she copulates, once ejaculation is complete, the female usually screams and becomes aggressive, something that is rarely common in the crossbreeding of this species. After a copulation, the female will usually preen herself a bit, preparing for the next copulation.
If the cat does not copulate with any male in this state, it will go to the interestrous stage (no ovulation), which lasts from 2 to 19 days, and then return to the estrus stage (where the cat may or may not be ovulating). If the cat copulates and is not ovulating, she will go into the final stage, dextrous , which lasts 35 to 70 days.
How long does pregnancy last in cats?
Like pregnancy in dogs, pregnancy in cats lasts about two months (from 63 to 67 days) , and in some cases up to 72 days.
Keep the mother up to date with all the necessary vaccines , prevent her and the babies from catching any disease, virus or bacteria. Likewise, with its deworming and cleaning treatment to rid it of vermin such as fleas, lice, among others. The latter always with the monitoring and approval of the veterinarian so that it does not harm anyone, neither the mother nor the future offspring.
How do I know if my cat is pregnant?
During the first weeks you will not show any symptoms until week two or three. Once you know your cat is pregnant, you’ll have at least a month to prepare.
Main symptoms that show that your cat is pregnant
Not necessarily all of the following symptoms can manifest in a cat, it depends on the breed, age and other factors.
- Change in her heat cycle : The period of heat in cats ranges from 10 days to three weeks. At that stage the cat will be rolling on the floor and howling. When she is pregnant, she will stop these behaviors.
- Increased appetite : Her hunger will demand up to at least half a daily ration more, which you must supply since your feline no longer eats just for her.
- Darkening of your nipples : They will also become swollen and turn a shade of pink. The growth of her nipples will be proportional to the number of pups she will give birth to.
- Vomiting : Like her human counterpart, the cat will feel discomfort in the early hours of the day.
- Weight gain : They can increase up to almost two kilos and usually occurs more frequently after the gestation period.
- Increased sleep period : You will see that your cat either asks you for more food or lies down in her sleeping spaces even more than she does.
- Change of behavior : Your feline will be in search of attention for caresses, this because of her neurological and hormonal changes. Although it will also show a fighting attitude with other animals to make a space for itself, which will prepare for its future birth.
- Abdominal growth : For obvious reasons, the cat will have a larger abdomen, this may not be noticeable if your pet is overweight.
Methods to know if your cat is pregnant
As well as our entry on pregnancy in dogs, to know for sure if your cat is pregnant, you have at least three options:
- Palpation : With the assistance of a professional, it will be possible to know if your cat is pregnant by palpating your pet’s abdomen. It is advisable to perform this method on the 20th day after pregnancy.
- X-rays : This will show only the skeletons of the hatchlings, but in order to see them they will have to pass at least 40 days after management. So you can know how many kittens your pet will have.
- Ultrasound : This is convenient on day 21 of management, although it will be difficult for you to know how many kittens will be born.
During pregnancy in cats
You must prepare your house and the rooms of your feline as the most comfortable and ideal space so that she can give birth to her entire litter without any problem. Prevent her from going out, keep her protected to control and supervise her during her pregnancy and labor.
Your diet will have to be, at least during your pregnancy and in the period of lactation of the young, food for baby cats or for pregnant cats or that are in the process of nursing their young.
Two weeks before labor you will notice changes in your feline, such as the desire to seek refuge, for this you could create a special place so that your cat can give birth without major difficulties. You can consider a box covered with papers, towels and covers. Keep in mind though that if your cat wants to give birth anywhere else, a laundry basket or in your closet, she will.