Compared to humans, cats have a shorter gestation period (about 9 weeks) but in exchange, the felines tend to give birth to multiple babies at once. Most of the time, if you know how to feel for kittens in a pregnant cat, you could gain critical estimates regarding litter size, due date and so on. Once you know what to expect in the future, it's a breeze to make preparations for your pregnant furball. That being said, cat parents must keep in mind a few issues before going for the belly of the pets.
So you really need guidance on how to feel for kittens in a pregnant cat? If that is so, you come to the right place. Through the following information, you should be able to find out everything you need to know about getting a feel of kittens in pregnant cats.
What Is The Best Time
Generally speaking, if your fluffy friend is indeed pregnant, the most obvious sign would be a considerable increase in the overall size of its abdomen. Typically, the increase only becomes noticeable to naked eyes when the pet is in Week 4 – 5. Once that occurs, it's possible to detect the presence of kittens inside the feline.
By palpating the tummy of your cat, you shall detect a number of lumps which happen to be kitten embryos. Of course, in case you want to play it safe, take your furball to the vets for an examination. Usually, an ultrasound is more than enough to determine the exact nature of the lumps. Additionally, to get an accurate headcount of the kitten, an X-ray should show you a pretty clear picture of the size of the litter. However, you may have to wait at least until Week 7 for the X-ray as the tiny skeletal structures of kittens often form by then.
During the last weeks of pregnancy, you could feel the movements of kittens inside the belly of your fluffy friend. As the due date approaches, it's essential that you set up a spot for the pet to give birth.
What Is The Ideal Approach
Technically, you don't have to be an expert to learn how to feel for kittens in a pregnant cat. In most of the cases, pet owners would be able to get a feel of kittens using their bare hands. Nonetheless, similar to humans, the mood of cats during pregnancy swings rapidly without any warnings. As a result, for your safety, it's of utmost importance that you avoid coming close to your furball if it seems agitated over something. If the pet is kind enough to let you get near it, don't stroke its abdomen roughly, especially when the due date is near.
Check us out for further detailed cat's health guide!
Telltale Signs Of Impending Labor
Overall, knowing how to feel for kittens in a pregnant cat shall permit cat parents to guess the due date. Still, it's strongly recommended that you also keep an eye out for potential signs of labor to prepare beforehand.
The Search For Proper Shelter
Once the due date is just a few days away, pregnant cats instinctively search for safe places to give birth. After the felines manage to pick a location, they then begin collecting materials for bedding. Hence, if you see your cat walking around the place during late pregnancy, put together a nest for it immediately. A carton box filled with soft rags should be adequate for most of the time. As pregnant cats get stressed easily, put the nest in a secluded corner of the house with water and food.
A Sudden Loss Of Appetite
In order to obtain enough nutrients for itself as well as its kittens, pregnant cats eat more than usual which often leads to weight increases. That being said, if your fluffy friend is only days from labor, it's highly likely that pet is going to have a reduced appetite. In certain cases, cats may stop eating entirely until they give birth to their kittens. With that in mind, it's widely advised that you check the feeding bowl of your furball regularly to see if it's still eating. In the case the pet barely eats at mealtime then you must prepare to receive kittens in the upcoming days.
Changes In Physical/Mental Condition
As the due date is just around the comer, the nipples and the glands of pregnant cat tend to enlarge. Furthermore, the vulva of the pets would soften as well. Such physical changes should be quite obvious upon visual inspection. Besides that, as your cat is about to head into labor, it gets more and more affectionate by the day. That means the pet is going to seek additional attention from you so you must keep watch over its behaviors. If your cat becomes too clingy out of the blue, get ready to provide assistance.
Considerable Drops In Body Temperature
From Week 8 onward, it's a good idea to take the temperature of your cat every once in a while. If you have a hard time guessing the due date, the body temperature of the pet is a reliable indicator. Overall, felines with kittens on the way tend to have temperatures between 100.5 and 102 degrees Fahrenheit. However, if the temperature of your fluffy friend drops below 100 degrees Fahrenheit, it's going to give birth within 24 – 48 hours. Hence, it's strongly recommended that you invest in cat thermometers to monitor your furball.
Discharges Of Mucous, Amniotic Fluid,...
When people notice odd discharges from the rear of pregnant cats, it's safe to say that labor is imminent. Usually, the felines shall head to their nest to give birth within a few moments. In most cases, the process entails certain discomforts so it's tricky to tell if your cat is in trouble. The majority of cats could push through without much difficulty but in case the pet seems to in great pain, a trip to the vets is a safe bet. After all, when the well being of your cat is on the line, it's impossible to be too careful.