pregnant cat

The period of pregnancy in cats is very important for people who raise cats at home.  most cat breeders have several important questions about the period of pregnancy in cats, in this article, we will answer these questions.

Domestic cats with short or long hair are considered very fertile. the average number of their production of kittens is about four or five cats.  for some reason Siamese cats give birth to more kittens while Persian cats, which are called Shirazi cats and other breeds, are less fertile.

Is my cat likely to have problems during pregnancy?

Problems occurring for your cat during pregnancy and delivery are rare in all breeds, except for Persian or Shirazi cats, as more than 99% of cats receive kittens without assistance or any complications.  when you find your pregnant cat in a state of rest or relaxation, make sure to check that things are going on without obstacles, so that your cat will give birth on time without any problem. here are some of the things that must happen during a cat's pregnancy.

Early in pregnancy

The average pregnancy or the length of pregnancy in cats is about 64 days. in general, the pregnancy period for cats ranges from (62- 67) days or about (9-10) weeks.  you may notice some indications of pregnancy after the first three weeks, for example, The cat's breasts begin to swell and change color from white to pink.
After the fourth or fifth week has passed, the cat’s belly begins to swell. during this early time in the pregnancy period for cats your pet cat needs an environment or atmosphere that is low in stress .also, your cat needs high-quality food, so keep the dried food outside and allow your pregnant pet cat to Take as much as she likes.  to know how to care for a pregnant cat, you should consider reading some articles to help you take care of her.

Should a vet examine my pregnant cat?

Early Veterinary examination in the pregnancy period in cats is a good idea to check on the general health of the cat. the veterinarian can feel after 26 days of pregnancy ball lumps in the mother's abdomen, which are considered developing fetuses. the veterinarian can use ultrasound to detect kittens And determine their number more precisely. after 45 days, the skeleton will be formed and can be seen with x-rays, but I do not suggest that you expose your pregnant cat to an x-ray to determine the size of the kittens, as there are great risks when your pregnant cat is exposed to the rays unless there is clear evidence of something wrong with her pregnancy.

What should I do before kittens' birth begins?

If you intend to be present when your pregnant cat delivers her kittens, then start by taking the temperature of your pregnant cat during the cat’s pregnancy period two weeks before the date of birth. you should do this at the same time every day. Put on the thermometer and gel then insert about half an inch of Thermometer through the anus, leave the thermometer for about three minutes. the cat’s temperature should be between (38-39) degrees Celsius. when the cat’s temperature drops to 37.8 degrees Celsius, the cat will receive its kittens in less than 24 hours.

It is expected that cats gain weight from (2-4) pounds, that is, from (20-25)% of their normal weight during pregnancy. cats during pregnancy rarely eat more than they need but do not give them fat because the delivery will be more difficult because of these fats.

What should I expect upon receiving the kittens?

pregnant cats become more anxious and upset about (24-48) hours before birth. they often look for a place to give birth and receive their babies, but this behavior can occur as early as three days before the date of birth. at that time, put the cat in the place where you want your cat to give birth to her kittens.  the room must be dark in a quiet area of the house, that is not too cold or too hot with water and special food placed in it.

Cats who are about to give birth usually lick their stomach constantly. Often there is a secretion present before the birth, but the cat licks it quickly. the cervix will begin to expand, but there are no external indicators accompanying this.

During pregnancy cats will lose their appetite, they become dangerous and continue to lick their stomach. you may notice an increase in the respiratory rate.  it is quite common for a pregnant cat to sit with its mouth open and meow loudly, or move out around the room, which means the uterine contractions begin and the cat lies down, then she sits squatting and begins to press down to deliver the kittens. you should not interrupt or disturb the cat during this period, just watch that through the partially open door.

how long should I wait for the kittens' delivery?

The first kitten must arrive within an hour, sometimes the kitten comes after a few minutes, the other kittens arrive at intervals ranging between ten minutes to an hour. each kitten arrives wrapped in a gel-like membrane filled with fluid, which is called the fetal sac. the mother begins to lick her babies vigorously until the cyst ruptures and the little ones begin to breathe, this licking stimulates blood circulation and breathing.

In rare cases, the mother cannot free the kittens from the gel membrane, so you should do this instead of her by rubbing the kittens vigorously with a soft towel to stimulate them to breathe. the kittens are too sensitive so do not rub them too much.

The mother begins chewing the umbilical cord at that time. if the mother forgot to do this to one or more of the kittens, you can do so by tying the umbilical cord with dental floss and then cutting the cord about an inch long. it is important to let the mother do it herself if She wanted that because by licking the mother to her newborn kittens, motherhood moves with her,  this also helps her to recognize her babies and stimulates milk production.

The birth usually takes (2-6) hours, but if the birth lasts more than 7 hours, you should take your pregnant cat to the vet.  when the birth begins, you should put the cat in a quiet place with dim lighting.  Don't get involved in the birth process unless There was a need for this,  with the arrival of the last kitten, you can clean the mess that the cat left behind. remember to put a bowl of water and a plate of food next to the cat, because the mother cat does not want to leave its kittens for the first day or two.

What am I seeing?

After the cat's pregnancy has ended, the mother cat must spend about 70% of her time caring for her babies. you must remember to keep the room at a comfortable temperature, as the kittens cannot regulate their body temperature during the first six days.

In a normal birth, contractions occur in the abdomen, followed by contractions in the womb to expel the kittens. at first, you will see a clear green sachet, then the kitten will come out,  the placenta will be suspended, so you must withdraw it slowly after each birth.

Although the reception of each kitten lasts up to two hours or an average of (30-60) minutes, the kitten should not spend more than 15 minutes in the birth canal as the pressure increases on the umbilical cord that deprives the kitten of oxygen.  when you see the kitten in this predicament, she can be pulled by a piece of soft cloth with the movement that is backward and downward,  the kitten should be held from the hips or shoulders and not from the legs or the head. it is normal that the head or tail comes first at birth.
After birth, the mother cat empties the bloody fluid within ten days,  the cat usually licks the bloody discharge.

Things to take care of when preparing for the birth

1- Clean towels
2- A bottle of iodine solution such as Betadine for sterilization
3- Sharp scissors
4- Dental floss to tie the umbilical cord

 What are the serious problems that may occur?

A veterinarian should be contacted when the following occurs:
1- If the cat's pregnancy period lasts more than 66 days
2- If the mother's temperature is less than 37.8 ° C and this continues for more than one day
3- The mother cat loses her appetite, or the cat becomes depressed, weak, and lethargic
4- The kitten settles in the birthing basin for more than ten minutes and you cannot remove it
5- The cat has contractions for more than four hours and no young ones appear
6- More than five hours have passed and you are sure that there is another kitten inside the mother
7- The number of placentas is less than the number of cats
8- Kittens look weak
9- The cats' meow is continuous
10- The mother's temperature is more than 39 ° C and more than two days have passed since birth.

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