11 Signs to Tell If Cat Still Has Kittens Inside-What Should You Do

There’s no denying that you’ll be thrilled to meet the new kittens if your cat is expecting. This time can be both exciting and a little overwhelming. The majority of cats do well with naturally occurring births without assistance, but it’s normal for you as the owner to be concerned about how things are going.

We’ll go over some telltale signs that can help you determine whether your female cat still has kittens inside of her that need to be delivered in the paragraphs below. Of course, it is crucial to remember that you should always have a veterinarian in charge of the process and have them available in case anything were to worry you.

Late Pregnancy and Premonitory Signs of Parturition

Although a cat’s pregnancy typically lasts between 63 and 65 days, some cats have been known to have normal litters for as little as 58 days or as long as 70 days.

Until the last week of pregnancy, the cat’s behavior doesn’t significantly change. The quest for the ideal kittening bed takes center stage during that last week. Cats should be kept inside starting now so that labor can be observed.

At kittening, cats typically display one of two temperaments: the independent type, which will go to great lengths to find a dark, enclosed space far from human contact, and the dependent type, which will go to great lengths to seek comfort in the company of its owner and may very well choose the owner’s bed as the best place for kittening.

cat labor

The 3 Stages of Cat Labor

Stage 1: During the first stage of labor, uterine contractions will start. As the due date approaches, the contractions will gradually grow stronger and more frequent. Your cat spending more time in the nest and beginning to pace and scratch around is a typical indication that contractions have started.

The first stage of a female’s first litter can last up to 36 hours. It is significant to note that she might ask for assurance at this point because she is uneasy and possibly scared about this novel experience.

Stage 2: Throughout the second stage of labor, contractions will intensify and become more frequent. Your cat may start squeezing and bearing down to speed the birthing process along as the kitten starts to descend into the birth canal. Perhaps she’s trying to use the restroom, but that’s not the case.

At this point, the kitten’s outermost layer of the membrane will burst, but the inner membranes will still be present as the delivery takes place. It may take 5 to 30 minutes to deliver a single kitten.

Stage 3: Immediately after the kitten is born, the third stage of labor begins. The placenta and membranes are given to the mother at this time. It is normal to anticipate that the placenta will be delivered after each kitten, but occasionally another kitten will arrive right after another, delaying the process. Your cat will lick and care for the newborn kitten right away, but then it must turn its attention to the next kitten that is due.

The 11 Signs That There Are More Kittens on the Way

You will undoubtedly want to know when your cat is finished having kittens once she begins. You should be aware that a mother cat typically needs 4–16 hours to give birth to all of her kittens, though this can occasionally take longer. Here are the likely signs to watch for that indicate your cat is not finished giving birth:

1. Panting

A surefire indicator of labor is heavy breathing. Giving birth is extremely uncomfortable and requires a lot of energy. Following the birth of a kitten, it’s a good indication that more are on the way if you notice heavy breathing and panting. Once the delivery is done, your cat will probably calm down and settle.

In order to rule out any other potential problems, calling the veterinarian is ideal if you notice prolonged periods of restlessness without observing any other signs of labor or delivery.

2. Being Extremely Vocal

A cat will vocalize frequently while giving birth because labor is painful for it. The likelihood of your cat still has kittens inside her is high if she is making a variety of vocalizations, such as loud meows.

If vocalization persists after the last kitten has been delivered, that’s the only time you should be concerned about your cat during labor. Be ready to call your vet if your pet makes this kind of vocalization because it could be a sign of distress or something is off.

3. Straining

In the second and third stages of labor, your cat will push herself and exert effort. She might even appear to be attempting to use the restroom. The uterine contractions involved in childbirth are no joke; they are difficult to work.

Catapulting the kittens through the birth canal is made easier by the straining. Your cat will likely clean and care for her kittens between births before starting to labor once more when the next kitten is ready to be born. The veterinarian should be contacted if straining continues for more than 25 minutes if possible.

4. Licking Her Private Parts

The thin membrane enclosing the kitten can be broken down by licking the genital region. The kitten is able to enter the birth canal thanks to the fluid-filled sac. She will repeatedly lick the area to speed up the process as she feels the kittens moving inside of her.

5. Being Aggressive Or Highly Protective


his may be unsettling, but it’s not permanent. Your cat’s top concerns are to safeguard herself and her unborn kittens, especially while she is giving birth. She’s still getting used to the labor process, which came as a bit of a shock to her body. After she has finished giving birth to her children, she will start to relax.

Do not yell or use implements like spray bottles to correct this behavior. Her protectiveness might grow as a result of this.

After kittens are born, aggression can occasionally last for three to four weeks while the mother’s hormones adjust. This is particularly valid if your cat displayed this behavior while she was pregnant.

Take note of these alterations in mood and consult your veterinarian about what you can do to help your cat feel secure at this time.

6. Placenta Or Afterbirth Did Not Pass After the Last Kitten

The placenta will disintegrate within 15 minutes of each kitten’s birth. Keep an eye on the mother cat because she will eat the afterbirth after each kitten is born. There may be more kittens inside if the placenta isn’t visible.

7. Fluid-Filled Bubble in Birth Canal

A kitten can be identified if you see a bubble of fluid in the birth canal. The kitten may become stuck if it is not delivered within 10 minutes of the birth or emerges from the birth canal. When this does occur, it is best to speak with your veterinarian for more advice before taking any actions to aid in the birth. You don’t want to put her through any discomfort or risk hurting her or the unborn kitten.

8. Lack of Focus on Newborn Kittens

Your female cat will give the newborn some brief attention while she is in active labor, but she must also concentrate on delivering the remainder of the litter. She won’t be able to bond with and care for the kittens until after delivery.

You must inform the vet if you notice that your cat is completely avoiding her kittens and not displaying any interest in them. Although it’s not a guarantee, this could be a sign that a kitten is trapped inside.

After giving birth, be careful not to overburden her. She will require a calm, cozy setting to care for her new kittens.

9. Discharge

It is typical to see some discharge during active labor, sometimes even blood-tinged discharge that passes through the birth canal. Call the tee vet if the cat starts bleeding profusely while giving birth. Additionally, contact the veterinarian right away if she continues to discharge blood for more than a week after giving birth in order to have her checked out and find the source of the problem.

10. Lack of Appetite

It’s likely that your cat won’t prioritize food while she’s giving birth. During labor, nausea is typical.

After giving birth, your female cat’s attention may not be on food right away, but after a few hours, it should. After all, she needs to eat to regain her energy and to get the nutrients she needs to feed her young kittens.

11. Fewer Kitten Delivered Than Shown on Imaging

There is cause for concern if your cat does not give birth to the number of kittens that were shown on imaging if the vet performed an earlier X-ray or ultrasound during your cat’s pregnancy and you received a headcount.

If fewer kittens were delivered, speak with your veterinarian for additional guidance. To find out if any kittens were still inside the uterus, you’ll probably need to come into the office for repeat imaging. If there are, a C-section might be required immediately.

What Should You Do If Your Cat Still Has Kittens Inside Her?

Once she begins nursing, your cat’s stomach should begin to deflate.

Sometimes after birth is still present because your cat may have chewed the umbilical cord before removing the cat from it.

Even so, nursing will cause your cat to contract, which will cause her to pass the afterbirth quickly.

Your cat is a mother who cleans all the kittens’ hind areas to aid in digestion.

However, if your cat is still carrying a kitten, you could try to feel the lump in the abdomen by gently palpating your cat’s abdomen.

Unlike other organs, which cannot be moved inside, this can. If your cat doesn’t give birth to her last kitten, she’ll probably get a fever and the kitten might not survive.

The kitten may be dead if you cannot feel any movement.

Normally, the kitten should be able to navigate to the birth canal and the middle of the lower abdomen.

You could aid your cat in turning the kitten around toward the canal by assisting it to feel around the bump and gently press it continuously above one side of the kitten’s form.

Do not push it in any direction; if your cat is still giving birth to a kitten, that is normal. However, if she stops giving birth to a kitten but still has a lump inside her that is the size of other kittens, you should take her to the veterinarian right away to have her labor ended.

Although it is common for the last kitten to pass away, the veterinarian can only do this in the unlikely event that the kitten is still alive and will survive.

Although occasionally surgery is necessary to free the trapped kitten. Even though stress can cause cats to stop giving birth, this can cause hours to pass before the final kitten is born.

After going through this, the cat must be worn out.

However, if your cat requires surgery because she can’t deliver the last kitten and needs to be spayed, your veterinarian may advise you to do so.

The choice to agree or not is then yours.

How to Know If the Cat’s Labor is Over?

The cat would normally bite the umbilical cord after giving birth, but if she is unable to do so, you will need to assist her.

Although you should consult your veterinarian right away and let them handle the birthing process if you feel confident doing so.

Although it’s possible for the entire delivery process to take up to five hours—or even an entire day—in some cases.

Typically, there can be up to 6 kittens born. Allowing your cat ample time to tidy up and calm its kittens is a good idea.

Keep an eye on things but try not to get involved too much. You should soon schedule an appointment with your veterinarian if your cat isn’t caring for its young.

Sometimes, rearing a child after birth may be necessary.

After the procedure, you should continue to communicate with your vet.


What to Do After All the Kittens Are Born

When you’re certain that all the kittens have arrived and the mother cat appears to be in good health, you should let her spend time bonding with her young ones. She should start nursing her kittens right away, and her maternal instincts will take over to keep them warm, secure, and well-fed.

Replace any soiled bedding that your cat used to give birth. Talk calmly and quietly to your mother cat while you’re doing this to prevent her from getting upset. It is acceptable to gently pick up the new kittens to clean the birthing container. Your cat probably places her complete trust in you, so moving the kittens to a clean, dry area should not cause her too much distress. However, not all new mothers experience this.

Dead Kitten Stuck Inside Cat

Symptoms of a Dead Kitten Inside a Cat

A cat’s miscarriage may occasionally go undetected.

It is only possible to determine whether a miscarriage occurred in the early stages of pregnancy if an early ultrasound detected a pregnancy.

The miscarriages that occur in the later stages do exhibit some miscarriage symptoms.

They include-

  • Abnormal vaginal discharge
  • Abdominal pain
  • Fever

Though some cats that experience a miscarriage shall have contractions and may deliver stillborn kittens

How Can You Help the Mother Cat to Deliver Her Stuck Kitten?

  • You can assist your cat if she needs assistance cutting the umbilical cords after giving birth on occasion.
  • Wear a pair of disposable gloves and wash your hands.
  • Place the cord, which should be 2 inches from the kitten’s body, and tie dental floss around it.
  • Again tie an inch away from the kitten
  • Between the ties, cut the umbilical cord.
  • The kitten should not be cut too close, though.
  • Trim the thread’s long ends because the mother cat will chew on them.
  • If the mother chews next to the kitten, try to imitate her.

Nevertheless, you might speak with your veterinarian.

How to Save a Dying Kitten

Do not intervene unless absolutely necessary; a typical mother cat will usually do a much better job of drying and cleaning her kittens than any human. However, if a kitten has to be saved and is not breathing, or in the rare instances when the motherly instinct seems to be absent and the kitten is ignored, saving it becomes a matter of urgency. It is possible to best imitate the cat’s techniques by paying attention to the order in which it employs them. The cat’s first action is to check that the kitten’s mouth and nose are unobstructed. The cat then picks up the umbilical cord with a nipping/licking motion, chews through it, stimulating the abdominal navel region to start breathing and repeats this process with the other end. A vigorous licking massage of this area follows if this is insufficient. To start the bowel and bladder movement, give the entire body a more thorough drying lick and pay special attention to the anal area and posterior part of the abdomen. Then, if required, a prod to the mother’s nipples. In a true emergency, the human imitation can essentially follow the same plan with some additions.

  • Tear the membranes from the nose, wipe it, open the mouth, tilt the kitten’s head downward, and clear any fluid that may have been present.
  • Remove the membranes from the cord and tear them away from the kitten if it did not already break when the kitten was delivered. It is not necessary to cut and tie the cord in an intricate manner. The cat would chew it through, providing a blunt crushing action to stop bleeding; tearing it between the first two fingers and thumb achieves a similar result. To reduce the chance of pulling on the kitten, it should be supported and the cord held at the kitten’s end.
  • It is necessary to clear debris and fluid from the air passages if the kitten is not breathing but appears to be in good health, has come in tail-first, or appears to have inhaled fluid. This can be accomplished by sucking debris out of the airway if gentle suction equipment is available. Another method to accomplish this is to use a 5–10ml syringe and a Jackson cat urinary catheter. By stimulating the kitten’s nose and throat, you can also get it to cough and sneeze. Swinging the kitten is one of the traditional techniques. To accomplish this, place the kitten in the palm of your hand with its back facing the palm, neck between your forefinger and third finger, and head sticking out between the fingers. Make sure you are not too close to a table or other protruding edge before giving a very gentle swing while holding the kitten in your fingers and turning your hand palm down. If you are, a disaster will inevitably occur. A second wipe of the nose and mouth will remove any remaining fluids after the swing’s effect of forcing them out of the air passages. Additionally, the swing will encourage breathing. Be careful; if used too vigorously, this technique can cause a brain hemorrhage.
  • • The next action simulates licking the abdominal wall and promotes breathing. It involves stroking and rubbing with a clean towel. This can be followed by a quick general rub-dry, presuming the kitten is by this point showing signs of regular breathing. There may be a need for artificial respiration if the kitten is not breathing. Mouth-to-mouth breathing can be helpful, but only when done carefully. There are a few crucial things to keep in mind. Fluids and debris must first be removed (see above); it is useless to blow them further down. Second, compared to human lungs, kitten lungs have a tiny capacity. Allow a brief pause for expiration and blow very gently. In between three and five seconds, repeat this cycle. It may help to reduce the risk of the kitten’s lungs overinflating and be more hygienic than direct mouth-to-mouth feeding to breathe into their airways using a small endotracheal tube or drinking straw. The newborn animal has been made to gasp using a variety of other techniques. These include applying brandy or other spirits to the tongue using a fingertip, flicking the chest sharply but gently with a fingertip, and alternating between hot and cold water applications.

A drop of doxapram applied to the kitten’s tongue’s underside is a more dependable treatment than some of these methods, which might or might not be effective. If in doubt, continue stimulating the kitten because some can still be revived more than 30 minutes after birth. Nevertheless, the chance that hypoxia will result in blindness or brain damage increases the longer it goes without breathing.


When to Call the Veterinarian

During your cat’s pregnancy, you should speak with your veterinarian frequently. Having a qualified veterinarian on call to help will help ensure the health and well-being of the mother and the kittens, even though the majority of females deliver their babies without any issues. The signs of a problem during childbirth are listed below.

20 minutes or more of intense labor and straining without delivery of a kitten

The kitten becomes noticeably trapped in the birth canal for more than 10 minutes

Your female becomes lethargic or has a fever greater than 103 degrees Fahrenheit

The number of placentas delivered doesn’t match the number of kittens that were born

Excessive bleeding that lasts for more than 10 minutes, can be a sign of an infection, uterine tear, or postpartum hemorrhage


There are a lot of indicators that your female cat may still be giving birth to more kittens. For you to be best equipped to take care of your cat throughout the process, it is crucial to be aware of everything that the labor and delivery process entails. In order to receive the necessary assistance from a veterinarian if necessary, it is also crucial to be aware of the warning signs of any potential birthing complications.


How Long After the First Kitten is Born Will the Next One Come?

Kittens will usually be born head-first just like human babies, but if they do deliver feet first then there is no cause for alarm. After the first kitten arrives, you can expect subsequent kittens to take between 30 minutes and an hour to deliver.

Can Kittens be Born Far Apart?

The time between kitten births varies. On average the intervals last ten minutes to an hour. In the cat, so-called interrupted labor happens frequently enough to be taken for granted.

Can a Cat Give Birth on Two Different Days?

Cats are able to give birth days apart. Additionally, some cats will give birth to a litter of kittens, have a few of them, and then wait a while before producing another litter. Rarely, cats may experience paused labor, which could result in two birthdays for the same litter of kittens.

When a Kitten is Born, Can You Touch It?

Vets recommend not touching kittens unless you have to while their eyes are still closed. You can check on them to make sure they’re healthy and gaining weight, but try to avoid making direct physical contact with them. The mother of the kitten will also express how at ease she is with you holding her young.

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