Cat Pregnancy Stages And Timeline

Felines have adapted to be quite easy to conceive. They’re known as “induced ovulators” because the procedure of mating enables the embryos to be released from the reproductive organs. As a result, the chances of them conceiving become quite high.

Generally, a normal cat pregnancy takes approximately 60 to 65 days. But, if you remember precisely what date your feline mated, determining how far pregnant she is might be tricky. Felines can get pregnant as early as four months of age. But, for the mom’s and babies’ wellbeing, it is advised that they wait once they are approaching to complete development. Spaying your feline before she reaches the age of four months is suggested to avoid unintended babies – provided you wish to breed your pet.

There are some factors to consider if you intend to breed your kitty. In this article, you will go through the stages of pregnancy in felines, the cat gestation cycle, and how to start preparing your feline for labor day.

Read also: How often do cats go into heat?

Signs of Cat Pregnancy

Fortunately, many feline pregnancy symptoms appear fairly early in felines. The first is a reddening and enlargement of her nipples. Pinking-up is what it’s called when your skin starts to turn pink during the two-week period. That’s the first indicator; however, if you’ve not bred a feline previously, it might be tough to observe.

cat pregnancy-pregnant cat
Image credit: Abubibolabu from Pixabay

Morning sickness might affect your feline in the same way it can affect humans. This illness may happen at any moment during the day and not only first thing in the early hours.

The belly would enlarge at some time depending on how many babies your feline delivers. She would put on weight; however, most of it would not happen until midway in the feline maternity phases.

How long is a cat pregnant?

Feline pregnancy usually will last approximately 63 or 67 days; however, determining how far a feline is pregnant could be difficult. The gestation cycle of a feline could last anywhere between 61 and 72 days.

Your feline may not exhibit visible signs of maternity till she is some weeks in her gestation. If you suspect your feline is pregnant, bring her to your veterinarian to be sure. There are various physical symptoms you must be likely to see around 2 – 3 weeks when you just want to find out whether your feline is pregnant.

Feline Pregnancy Timeline

Week 1

It is the first week of pregnancy. After fertilization, the sperm might require more than 10 days to activate the oocytes, based on whenever they have been discharged. After that, the fertilized embryo must be placed into the cervix, which needs 12-14 days. During this stage, your kitty would not be behaving any differently.

Week 2

The ovaries will deposit in your cat’s womb in this stage, the membrane would begin to thicken, and the fetuses will grow. Her hormones may start to fluctuate. She would, however, probably behave in a similar manner.

Week 3

The babies’ vital organs start to emerge during this week, then they eventually thrive. Hormones would keep rising in your feline, and she might put on weight during this stage. You might see that her nips get black and larger as her endorphins rise. That’s the feline’s first visible indication of motherhood. 

Week 4

During this week there are generally a lot of new signs. Your feline’s estrogen is at its peak, which means she’ll probably start showing some new feline pregnancy symptoms. Morning nausea might be a problem for your feline. Your feline, on the other hand, maybe ill the whole day.

Nevertheless, your cat must not reduce weight as a result of the illness. If something like this occurs, you must bring her to the veterinarian. Rather, her overall weight must keep going up, but you might not detect her increased growth until you measure her. You must discontinue lifting her up at this time since it might harm the mom and the baby.

Week 5

If you haven’t done so previously, now would be the time to bring your expectant feline to the veterinarian. At this stage in the feline pregnancy cycle, the babies are mature about right for your veterinarian to examine, so they would be sure to observe and let you know the count of babies. That’s not always correct, though, because felines may quickly sneak behind one other.

Week 6

Your feline’s metabolism must be rising by now. She’ll probably eat more now than she did earlier because now her babies are all becoming bigger. She’s also putting on weight to nurse the babies when they’re born. Keep in mind that she’s getting sufficient meals because the additional nourishment is crucial.

Although it is advised to shift as early as you discover your kitty is expecting, a kitten diet is especially important at this point. Kitten mixtures provide additional protein that your feline requires to grow and mature properly as an adult.

Week 7

Your feline’s tummy would be expectant by week 7. You’re almost there, and it would be apparent that your kitty would carry the baby shortly. Because your feline could start nesting, now would be an excellent opportunity to install a nesting chamber, even if she won’t want one for the initial weeks.

Once her belly fills up, your feline’s hunger might diminish rather than increase. To assist in combat this, provide meals on a regular basis.

Week 8

You could sense the babies moving about within your cat’s tummy at this time. Their movements and spins would be obvious, particularly if she allows you to go up near to her navel. Your feline’s nipples would enlarge and shed hair as they are ready to nurse the babies after delivery. Because of the estrogen, she would start to clean herself excessively. Her tummy fur would also start to come out.

This is related to chemicals that help cats to feed more easily after delivery. Her hunger could still be lacking compared to several weeks ago. You must keep feeding her regularly or let her roam as she likes. She might generate milk around this week, particularly if your feline has ever got pregnant before. Else, it will take place the following week.

Week 9

At 9th week, many felines may give birth to their babies. Your feline could become agitated and wander throughout this week. If she had not previously, she would start nesting. Her hunger would be at a decreased level when her belly space is reduced by her babies. Yowling, panting, and some other signs are frequent and indicate that labor is near.

Week 10

Some felines would continue to bear their babies until the 10th week. Others, though, would not. It’s possible that this has anything to do with reproduction and the number of babies. Felines are often just programmed to nurse their babies for extended periods of time. Your feline would go into childbirth at the finishing stage of this week. If she seems not to have, you should contact your veterinarian.

That’s not often a sign of trouble. It’s more likely that the embryos took more time to attach than expected, resulting in a delayed due date. It’s also possible that you miscalculated the periods if you don’t remember when your feline conceived.

Cat Labor Emergency Kit

It’s usually a smart plan to create an emergency pack with things you might want if your feline is expecting. In several circumstances, you won’t need to do anything since the environment will keep hold of everything. However, having one of these onboard “in an emergency case” is a smart idea. It’s important to remember that you must not attempt to assist your feline until you’re certain there’s a serious condition. Felines are highly proficient at producing kids without the assistance of humans.

Ensure you have sufficient clean bedding and blankets in your pack. Flannel is ideal for once the babies have been born since it prevents their nails from getting caught in the cloth.

Ensure you own a brand new set of clippers or a surgical box prepared to clip any cords that need to be clipped, as well as iodine to wipe the feline’s small navels to avoid contamination. You must also include rubber clothing in your medical pack if you need to touch the babies, and also disinfected alcohol swabs, and non-waxed oral floss. Oral floss would be required if the mom’s feline doesn’t manage to snip away the cords by herself.

A notepad and pencil are also excellent to include in your medical bag so that you could write things down about the delivery procedure and every other crucial detail such as the dates and times. You should also write down your veterinarian’s contact details in case you have to contact them for assistance.

Sometimes pet parents choose to incorporate a measurement tool to weigh babies that are born prematurely. You may also include supplies like kitty milk substitute mix and a medicine dropper along with feeding containers in scenarios you have any issues following the delivery, such as any of the babies, not suckling.

You should also contain Q-tips within your medical pack and a small vacuum device for newborns to assist wipe any mucous from small kitty faces and nostrils. If you reside in a chilly climate and are concerned that the young baby will not be able to remain cozy, consider introducing a warm compress in their mattress on gentle heat or using a heated water container to keep them comfortable.

You must only do it if it’s really essential, particularly if you’re using a hot water bottle. It’s quite possible for the bottle to boil, resulting in burns for your feline and her kittens.

Lastly, if your feline’s gestation lasts longer than 66 days, and if she has menstrual cramps for a considerable length of time and yet no additional babies have been delivered, or if your pet is bleeding any strange fluid that stinks weird or appears to develop inflammation, call your veterinarian straight away.

You must also call your veterinarian when you have some additional problems or if things don’t seem normal throughout the labor and delivery procedure. Any cat delivery inquiries must be directed to your veterinarian. Just keep in mind that it’s always important to keep a closer look and be well-prepared before an emergency arises.

Post-Birth Recommendations

Based on the number of babies, the complete birthing might take anywhere from 2 to 5 hours. The average litter size is 4 to 6 babies, so you can expect to see 2 kittens every hour. The mother feline must calm down a bit and nurse the babies once they are born. You shouldn’t get involved if the babies appear to be feeding. If one of the babies turns over, you should bring it close as possible to the mom’s tummy.

When there are many babies that need to be fed at the same time, you might need to move them out till they know how to give the spot to the other baby. You would like to assure that each kitten gets the same amount of attention.

The only moment you should assist in any meaningful way is when the mom appears to be neglecting the babies. The mom feline would not always be near the babies, so she must return to nurse them on a constant schedule. Contact your veterinarian immediately when she’s not nursing or cleaning the babies. Hand-rearing might well be required, although it is uncommon in the case of a fit mom.

Read Also : Caring tips for newborn kittens and mother cat

Final Thought

A feline gestation is similar to human childbirth in so many aspects, except it happens considerably faster. Your feline would start to gain weight approximately halfway during their gestation and could also have morning nausea. You would not have to do anything to assist your feline when it’s about labor time. Most cats are self-sufficient and will not require help until anything bad happens.

Most feline labors proceed without a glitch, and parents shouldn’t have to get involved. But, other symptoms might indicate problems, like brownish discharge and mother struggling without delivering babies. Contact your vet if you observe these signs.

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