How To Tell If Your Cat Is Pregnant
So you want to know how to tell if your cat is pregnant? Of course it becomes clear as time goes on and her abdomen swells with the weight of the growing kittens, but you probably want to know earlier than that.
The first question is whether your cat has been in heat recently and if so, did she have access to male cats? Any female over the age of four months may start reproductive cycles which can mean that she goes into heat regularly, sometimes as often as twice a month. At this time she will vocalize with a different call, display and lick her genital area more than usual, tread rhythmically with the back legs, and possibly spray a strong scented liquid onto walls.
If a female in heat is let out of the house, there is an extremely good chance that she will fall pregnant. So if you recognize those signals of heat in your cat and she was not kept in the house, you can already make a good guess that the answer is likely to be yes, kittens are on the way.
The Five Main Signs Of Pregnancy In Cats
1. Once your cat is pregnant there will be no more heat cycles. If you are aware of the regularity of her cycles that will often be the first sign that tells you she is expecting kittens.
2. You can also check for change in the appearance of her nipples. These will become larger and more pink in color within the first few weeks.
3. A pregnant cat will start to want more food early in the pregnancy. Her appetite will increase and she may want to eat more frequently. She may also become more affectionate, seeking more attention from you.
4. Cats can suffer from sickness in pregnancy just like humans, so you may notice some vomiting. Occasional vomiting should not be a problem but if it is very frequent she may not be getting adequate nutrition so you should consult your veterinarian.
5. From about one month into the pregnancy, the abdomen will begin to swell noticeably as the kittens grow.
The gestation period (length of pregnancy) for cats is only around two months (60 to 67 days) so it is helpful to know if your cat is pregnant as early as possible. It is possible to have the pregnancy aborted in the early stages if you do not want the kittens or if you have a very young, old or sick cat who might not be strong enough to give birth. Ask your vet about this. He or she will probably recommend that you have her spayed at the same time to prevent it happening again.
If you want to keep the kittens, you do not necessarily need to consult a vet unless you have concerns about the cat’s health or want a better estimate of when the kittens may be due. As she gets near to giving birth she will begin making a comfortable and safe nest, and you should make sure that this is somewhere that is accessible to you in case you need to reach her or the kittens to help with any problems.
So that is how to tell if your cat is pregnant … the next step is preparing for those cute little kittens to arrive!