Cat's receptive to mating during estrus or "heat." Cycles start after 4 months, seasonally Feb-April. Vocal, affectionate, increased urination. Induced ovulators, mating stimulates egg release.
Embryo development: cell migration, specialization, formation of body structures. Three layers form skin, organs. Placenta enables nutrient exchange. Each embryo has sac and placenta. Palpable at 2.5 cm in 3rd week of pregnancy.
As due date nears, queen exhibits nesting behavior. Prepare private, quiet area with soft bedding for comfortable birthing space.
Take pregnant cat to vet for immediate well-check. Ensure up-to-date health screenings, discuss preventative measures for a safe pregnancy.
Rare but serious pregnancy/birth complications. Keep emergency vet clinic info readily available for prompt action.
Depletion of calcium can lead to life-threatening eclampsia. Seek vet care for signs in pregnant/nursing cats. Treatment: calcium supplementation, support.
Poor health or infections in pregnant cat may lead to spontaneous abortion. Early: embryos resorbed. Symptoms: fever, bleeding, green discharge, depression.
Resorption: dead embryo absorbed early with few symptoms. Often unnoticed in multi-kitten litters. Vet visit essential if fewer kittens born to check for remaining fetuses.
Dystocia: difficult birth due to various factors. Active pushing for over an hour without birth signals dystocia. Contact vet immediately. C-section may be needed for mother and kittens' safety.
Often, a female cat will pant as labor begins.