Is My Cat Pregnant: How To Tell If Your Cat Is Pregnant

Posted: September 21, 2021 by Anita

how to tell if your cat is pregnant

Your grown-ass female cat looks like she’s picked up some weight. Is my cat pregnant or fat?

She might be pregnant with tiny little kittens. If your female cat is still intact (not spayed) and an outside cat, it’s likely that she is pregnant.

Although there’s not a whole lot of extra things you’ll have to do if your cat is pregnant, you must have a general knowledge of what to expect when caring for a pregnant cat.

In this article, I discuss how to tell if your cat is pregnant.

What age can a cat get pregnant?

How young can a cat get pregnant? Female cats can get pregnant as young as four months old! It’s imperative to have them spayed to prevent accidental pregnancy should she get out of the house.

The timing of reproductive activity, or what is also known in female cats as being “in heat,” is seasonal. “In heat” means she is ready to mate and have a litter of kittens.

This period of female cats being in heat usually occurs as the earth slips from cold, short days of winter to the warm, longer days of spring.

The breeding begins – a cat can become pregnant very quickly.

Sixty days later, all over the world – litters and litters of kittens are born! It’s called kitten season.

How to tell if your cat is pregnant

All unspayed female cats are called queens. All queens are breeding machines and are very capable of having multiple litters of kittens over a lifespan.

The best way to find out if your cat is pregnant is to take her to the veterinarian. Your vet can make a proper diagnosis by doing the following:

  • feeling your cat’s belly (not always accurate).
  • Ultrasound can confirm a pregnancy after day 18
  • x-rays can determine the number of kittens to expect (not always accurate)
  • blood test

How to tell if your cat is pregnant without a vet

The best way to find out if your cat is pregnant is to take her to the veterinarian. However, if it’s not possible to get your cat to a vet – here are possible signs that your cat is pregnant:

  • noticeable weight gain
  • swollen and pink nipples
  • distended abdomen (might not be noticeable right away)
  • increased appetite
  • vomiting
  • change in behavior



Not sure if your queen is in heat? Read “Is My Cat in Heat?” by clicking here.

How long is a cat pregnant?

A queen’s pregnancy can last anywhere from 61 days to 72 days. It is possible that she won’t show any physical signs of being with kittens until she is a few weeks along.

Stages of cat pregnancy

There are three stages of pregnancy in cats:

  • Pre-implantation (Day 0-12) – The egg is fertilized and plants itself in the uterus. A placenta is formed between the queen and kitten.
  • Embrogenesis (Day 12-24 – The nervous system, heart and spine are formed. Then the liver, digestive tract, respiratory system, limbs, sense organs, skull and bladder begin to form. The queen’s nipples begin to pink up and slightly enlarge.
  • Foetal growth (Day 24 to birth) – Everything firms up and organs fill out nicely. This is the period of rapid growth. By the last two weeks of pregnancy you can see the little kittens move around in the queen’s belly.

The queen’s abdomen is pear-shaped, and her breast is enlarged with milk. 12-24 hours before labor, a clear or bloody discharge might occur.

Set up a birthing area

A couple of weeks before the kittens are born, you will want to set up a comfortable, isolated space for the queen to deliver her baby kittens. It doesn’t have to be fancy.

Trust me when I tell you you don’t want to wait until the last minute to have this set up because queens have been known to choose the craziest places to give birth.

Here’s a suggested list of items you’ll need for the occasion:

  • large cat carrier (click here to see what I recommend), laundry basket or a cardboard box
  • puppy pads to line the carrier (or basket, or box) – click here to check out my favorite puppy pads
  • 2-3 blankets – to make the carried comfy, and cozy. Be sure to place the puppy pads over the blankets in case things get a little messy. Click here to check out the blankets I use for Theo
  • emergency kit made up of dental floss, clean scissors, iodine swabs (click here to purchase iodine swabs from Amazon.com) – just in case you need to step in to assist the queen.

Once you’ve set up the birthing container, place it in a quiet, dark, and comfortable area like a spare bathroom or closet where she can hide and deliver her kittens when it is time.

How to care for a pregnant cat

My cat is pregnant – so now what?

The great thing about your queen is she will instinctively know how to care for herself. What will change is her nutritional needs. Increasing the number of calories and fats will be essential for the development of the kitten and keeping her healthy throughout her pregnancy.

Food intake will typically double, maybe even quadruple.  Leave Mama Cat’s food dish full and freely available at all times.  This is one of the rare times in your cat’s life that it is okay to allow free feeding.

Make sure she is getting plenty of water.

Not sure what to feed your queen once she gives birth to those gorgeous kittens? Click here to read my article, 7 Best Cat Foods For Mama Cat – What To Feed A Nursing Mother Cat.

Conclusion

So, you think your cat might be pregnant, but you’re not exactly sure. In this article, I discussed how to tell if your cat is pregnant.

Although there’s not a whole lot of extra things you’ll have to do if your cat is pregnant, you must have a general knowledge of what to expect when caring for a pregnant cat.

All unspayed female cats are called queens. All queens are breeding machines and are very capable of having multiple litters of kittens over a lifespan.

The timing of reproductive activity, or what is also known in female cats as being “in heat,” is seasonal. “In heat” means she is ready to mate and have a litter of kittens.

The best way to find out if your cat is pregnant is to take her to the veterinarian. The best way to find out if your cat is pregnant is to take her to the veterinarian.

However, if it’s not possible to get your cat to a vet – here are possible signs that your cat is pregnant:

  • noticeable weight gain
  • swollen and pink nipples
  • distended abdomen (might not be noticeable right away)
  • increased appetite
  • vomiting
  • change in behavior

A couple of weeks before the kittens are born, you will want to set up a comfortable, isolated space for the queen to deliver her baby kittens. It doesn’t have to be fancy.

The great thing about your queen is she will instinctively know how to care for herself. What will change is her nutritional needs. Increasing the number of calories and fats will be essential for the development of the kitten and keeping her healthy throughout her pregnancy.


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