The majority of cats will conceive when they are mated. Sometimes though they do not which is why I think this article may be of use to people as a guide to deciding if your cat is pregnant.
I find that there are a few sure fire signs which tell me when my cats are pregnant.
Some of my girls display all of these signs and some of them only display a couple of these signs but with experience deciding if your girl is pregnant or not becomes second nature.
Let me show you the easiest signs your cat is pregnant.
Often when my girls come home from visiting a stud cat they will go straight off call. Which I find is a good indication that the job has been done and the girls eggs have been fertilised. I find my girls know when they are pregnant and so do not feel the need to continue calling.
After about ten days some of my girls display morning sickness. I also find my girls display behavioural changes and become much more affectionate.
When my girls are about three weeks pregnant the most obvious signs start to be displayed. My girls nipples ‘pink up’ which basically means that their nipples change colour from their usual skin colour to a pink or even a red colour. In conjunction with this ‘pinking up’ the nipples become slightly enlarged, which is particularly noticeable in a maiden queen. Also the hair around the nipples starts to clear to give easy access to the future kittens when feeding.
Usually I expect my girls to show what I like to call ‘saddle bags’ at about 5 weeks pregnant though sometimes they are more obvious slightly earlier. Saddle bags being an enlargement of the mid riff which bulges outwards rather than hanging down. I also find my girls tend to put on some weight in what I believe to be the girls preparation for the drain the kittens will surely place on her reserves.
You will usually find an increased appetite in a pregnant cat and they start to eat more, drink more and urinate more often. I like to keep complete diet biscuits down at all times and allow my girls to eat as much as they want to. I also find that my girls will graze on the food and eat little and often rather than eat their usual size portions in one sitting.
I also find that towards the end of the pregnancy my girls start to display the nesting instinct and look for a nice place to have their kittens, This usually being under the bed or in a wardrobe or basically any place you would rather not let her have her kittens.
Avoid Bad Nesting Choices
Leave a large cardboard box on its side with some blankets in and leave it in a quiet room in the house for the girl to ‘discover’ by herself (this way you reach a compromise). She picks where she wants to have her kittens and you are happy to let her choose….as long as it is in the cardboard box in the quiet room!
By this time of course pregnancy is usually not in any doubt due to the fact that my girls look as if they have swallowed a rugby ball!!!
The gestation period for a cat is between 63 and 67 days with the average being 65 days.
I find it easy to remember, nine months pregnancy for humans, nine weeks pregnancy for cats.
I like to use day two of the honeymoon as my conception date though with experience of my own girls I may modify this to suit the girl or line in question.
It is not unusual for a maiden queen to go as much as 67 days. If your cat has not given birth by day 72 I would recommend veterinary advice.