How Can You Tell if Your Cat is Pregnant?
Since the signs may not always be clear, it can be difficult to tell whether a cat is pregnant or not. If you're aware of key symptoms a cat may experience when they are expecting, it can aid in the guessing game.
Below are some things to watch for if you think your cat may be expecting – but first, make sure your cat is female. You may think this is a no-brainer, but it can be difficult to tell whether a cat is a boy or girl –especially when they are a kitten. If your cat is a female, the space between her anus and urinary tract opening will be close together. If they are a male, they will be further apart. See what I mean? That can be hard to tell, and is why some people may not know the sex of their cat until kitties arrive! It’s good to be certain of your cat’s sex before making a judgment call on whether they are pregnant or not.
Once you’ve determined that your kitty is a girl, watch for:
Yes, cats experience this feeling just like humans do during pregnancy! Around the 3rd week of the gestation period, your cat may not have much of an appetite. She will tend to avoid her food bowl, feel nauseated, and potentially puke. No worries, though – she’ll start eating more when she’s further into her pregnancy.
Large, Pink Nipples
A pregnant cat will have nipples that appear bigger or more pronounced than normal. The change in size may be easy to see or not, depending on the size of the litter. More kittens in the litter will mean more prominent nipples and vice versa. The color will change to a deeper pink and be softer to the touch.
A Big Appetite
Once they’ve passed through the morning sickness stage, felines will have a hefty appetite. The amount of food you normally give her will not be enough! They will keep asking for second helpings, third helpings, maybe fourth helpings. They are feeding their little growing babies!
The Baby Bump
A cat’s belly will look significantly bigger when she is pregnant. It will appear enlarged and hang fairly low to the ground. To confirm that this is due to kittens and not just an overactive appetite, you can touch her stomach. Do you feel little lumps? Those are tiny kittens developing!
Sometimes cats gain weight when they aren’t pregnant – they are just growing or eating a little too much kitty food. ;) But you can tell if they are pregnant if their abdomen is the only part of their body that’s added on some extra pounds.
If checking for the above signs still hasn't give you a clear result, you can always get an:
The most scientific way to determine if you cat is pregnant is to have an x-ray done. You’ll be able to see the little kittens, not just feel the baby bump! However, x-rays cannot see the little kittens in her stomach until she is 40 days along. So, if you get one before that time, it may look like she’s not pregnant when she really is! Try to predict if it’s around that time and then take her to a veterinarian as best as you can.