What Help Can You Extend To Your Cat Giving Birth For The First Time?
Most people who own a cat are cat owners by accident. Either they have found the cat in their backyard or a friend gave it to them as a gift. They do not have enough knowledge about handling the cat and how to deal with them during pregnancy and giving birth. If this is the first time your cat will give birth, you have to prepare yourself and part of your preparation is to read this post.
We are also a cat owner by accident. It was winter when a cat showed up on our porch. We did not let her go outside as it is very cold during that day and she might get sick. After checking with our neighbors as to who owns the cat, it looks like she was abandoned. She was so adorable that we all decided to adopt her. We were surprised to know that she was pregnant.
We know little about cat since we haven’t owned one before. We visit our dog’s vet to check on the cat and he gives us advice on how to deal with a pregnant cat. The vet also told us what look for to detect birthing signs and what to expect during the process. He also gave us a pamphlet on the things to do after giving birth. According to the vet, it looks like that it is the first time the cat will give birth. We are all so excited.
For first time cat owners and for those who are not aware that they can help their cat give birth for the first time, this post is for you.
Preparing For The Coming Of Your Kittens
There is no need to worry a pregnant cat is capable of taking care of herself, but you still need to give the care and attention from as she goes through the labor. If you seldom see your cat and she usually wants to be alone, it’s okay.
When a cat reaches the full term of their pregnancy, she normally sneaks away to give birth in a private place. It is important for you to keep an eye on them, during the last few weeks of their pregnancy. If you notice anything unusual about your pregnant cat, you can have the vet check her.
One important thing that we have learned during the time our cat was pregnant is to keep calm. It is important that you advise everyone else in the house to be calm and quiet around her especially during the last two weeks of pregnancy and to be very careful when dealing with her. You need to tell your children who love to play with their cats to be gentle with the cat.
It will help her a lot if you keep her as calm and as inactive as possible during this time, and it is also best to encourage her to relax in her special bed. You might not get your cat stay in the bed that you prepared for her but just keep it in a place that she always stays during the last week of her pregnancy. The possibility that she will birth on that area is high. It is important that she has some option on where to give birth and never ever try to force her from her chosen spot.
Days Before Giving Birth
Stages Of Labor And Giving Birth
Your cat will undergo 3 stages of labor. If the time has come, you need to be very watchful – cat labor should go very smoothly, but you need to oversee her labor so in the case of problems or complications you can act appropriately. Make sure not to interfere with her labor, you might upset your cat and limit yourself to regular checks.
You can contact your vet if you notice unusual thing is happening. Since this is the first time your cat will be having her kittens, you need to be very careful. Advise your children to stay away from the cat while giving birth.
Stage 1- Contractions Start
- You may not notice this. The cervix and uterus are ready for delivery.
- Contractions will begin.
- You will notice your cat will become very restless. It looks like as if she is looking for something.
- The cat will make unproductive trips several times to the litter box, but hopefully, she will settle in her maternity bed.
- If she chooses another spot, it’s okay. Our cat has transferred from different places before she finally settles at the back of the cabinet. Do not touch her or move her – it is best that you let her give birth where she chooses.
- When she finally settles to her preferred place she will start to experience a vaginal discharge.
Stage 2 – The Birth of the Kittens
- For cat giving birth for the first time, this is the exciting part. It may last from 2 hours to 24 hours. Make sure your birth kit is complete.
- Kittens will be born head first, but some may come out feet first this is normal there is no need to worry.
- The kittens may have 30 to 45-minute intervals, but there are some that may come out an hour apart.
- Make sure you are distant away from your cat as she gives birth to her kittens, intervene only if needed. If you notice that your cat is having a hard time giving birth to her kittens, has bloody discharge, or she gives birth to kittens very quickly without time to clean them or break the amniotic sacs call your vet right away. If it is the first time your cat will be having her kittens, it is best to have the vet around.
Stage 3 – The Passage of the Cat Placentas
- This stage happens after each kitten comes out.
- Count the number of placentas your cat passes. If you have 5 kittens, there should be 5 placentas as well.
- If there are fewer placentas than the kittens, the mother might have eaten them, or in the case of twins, they might have shared one placenta. You should inform your vet about this as soon as possible. In our case and since our vet lives across our house we invited him to our house and monitored our cat as she gives birth.
- If she eats some of the placentas do not panic – this is normal, but make sure to keep an eye on her as she gives birth.
What you Can Do Once All the Kittens Come Out?
- As soon as all the kittens are born, the mother should break all the amniotic sac and then carefully clean them. Make sure not to intervene on your cat’s labor, but your cat may need some help.
- You should step in if your cat does not open the sac, or does not clean the kittens. Tear open the unopened sacs using a clean towel, so the kittens can breathe. Carefully clean their nose and mouth. Then dry the kitten using a small clean cloth. A final firm rubs using a warm cloth will dry and warm the kittens and help them take their first big breath.
- The mom will bite the umbilical cord if she doesn’t you can help her. With clean hands or you can put on disposable gloves, put dental floss around the cord and cut the umbilical cord as you tighten the ties. Do not cut too near to the kittens as this may endanger them.
- Long ends of the thread can be swallowed or chewed by mom, so don’t forget to trim them. If you see your cat trying to chew it near the kitten, stop her and do it.If you are not sure about this part, you can always call your vet to make sure your cat and kittens are safe and happy.
After Giving Birth
The cat delivery normally takes around 2 to 5 hours. In very rare cases, it may last 24 hours. If your queen is having trouble giving birth, call your vet right away so he can instruct you what to do next.
The litters can house around 4 to 6 kittens. Once all the kittens are born, cleaned and fed you can handle them gently to help them socialize, and give your cat some time to take a rest.
Guide the little kittens to their mother teats, as they are likely to be very hungry. If in case there are more teats than number of kittens, you can swap them over until they learn how to share.
Hand rearing can be done if needed after a cat giving birth, but this is not normal. If you have any questions or concerns, you can call your vet. Now that you have successfully helped your cat gave birth and both the kittens and the mother are doing okay. It is time for you to celebrate the arrival of the new members of the family.