Breeding cats can be a task if you are new to the scene, as it involves quite a bit of complexity. There are a couple of things that one needs to keep in mind when trying to breed cats.
The most important point is the oestrus cycle of the cat. Cats are polyoestrous creatures, which means that they can come to heat multiple times in a single year.
If you are a new cat parent or a breeder, this article is for you, wondering if mating is a success. Read more to get acquainted with the world of cats.
How to tell if cat mating was successful?
To understand if the cat mating was successful, one needs to track down the estrus cycle and look for the early signs of pregnancy. A female cat will display behavioral changes and act more clingy than usual during this time.
Be careful, though, as sometimes, pseudo pregnancies can confuse you. It is important to wrap our heads around feline conception and how it functions.
Cats usually give birth in litters up to 10 kittens, but at times it can also be less in number. However, there is no guarantee that your cat will become pregnant just because it participates in sexual intercourse. Worry not!
Here is a list of signs that help detect the successful mating of your cat. –
1. Your cat missed estrus
Felines reach puberty at around four to six months of age and are known to have a proper cycle. So, a missed estrus is the best way to detect cat pregnancy. It is the first sign that the mating was successful and your cat is pregnant.
Heat is easily noticeable in cats as it comes with certain behavioral changes. An increase in yowling, needy behavior, and rubbing against different surfaces are some of the signs that your cat is in heat.
If you have an unspayed female cat in the household, you will see that the cat goes into the heat zone within ten days to sometimes even three weeks after mating. Conceiving does not allow the cat to enter the heat state, so the search for a male partner comes to a halt.
2. Your cat is gaining weight
Weight gain is a significant indicator of pregnancy in cats. As a new life starts forming inside the cat, it starts to put on weight. It also happens as a result of your cat eating more than usual.
Your cat will undergo a steady increase in weight throughout the pregnancy. The increase in appetite and fewer movements contribute to a successful gain.
The more the litter, the more the weight of your feline friend. The average weight gain ranges between 2lbs to 5lbs. But the weight gain in cats comes much later and is not an early sign. If you want a fast detector, you may want to look out for the other signs.
3. Your cat develops a nesting tendency
Nesting behavior is noticeable in cats much later during pregnancy. Nesting is the act wherein your cat tries to find a safe place to give birth to its litter. This behavior comes into play towards the end of the pregnancy.
As cats are essentially wild creatures, their predatory instincts are high, and so is their urge to protect. Some popular nesting spots that cats tend to gravitate towards include cupboards, couches, desks, and so on. Do not question your cat’s trust in you when you notice this behavior, as it is just an instinctive trait.
4. There is a change in your cat’s behavior
Like humans, pregnancy in cats also comes with hormonal changes and a shift in behavioral traits. Cats tend to become more friendly and social during pregnancy.
If you look closely, you will also find an increase in their appetite and a loss of energy levels. But this affectionate behavior starts reducing as the pregnancy nears its end, and the cat starts looking for a peaceful, cozy corner to give birth.
5. The cat’s nipples turn pink and swell up
The change in the color of the nipples is also one way to detect pregnancy in cats. It happens because the blood reaches up to the nipples to help lactation. As cats begin to prepare milk, the nipples swell up and turn into hues of pink. You can spot this change in color in about 12 to 14 days from the day of mating.
6. There are changes in your cat’s appearance
Pregnancy in cats comes with physical changes. It is no different from the rest of the animal world. If you notice your cat having morning sickness, congratulations! Your feline friend is pregnant.
As days pass, about four weeks from the mating, the lower abdomen starts swelling up too. The cat requires more space to hold up the litter inside her.
How many times does a cat have to mate to get pregnant?
It is during the puberty stage that a cat has its first reproductive cycle. Usually, cats get to puberty when they are six months old, but this may even go up to a year for certain cats.
The number of times a cat requires to mate to get pregnant differs for different cats. However, the normal frequency is around 3-4 times within 24 hours. Cats are known as induced ovulators. It means that breeding helps to stimulate the formulation and release of eggs from the ovaries.
How long does it take for a cat to finish mating?
Cats, when in heat, can breed at any time. Cats take a maximum of one or two minutes to mate and can mate multiple times on the same day. Female cats tend to mate with several tom cats in the mating season, which is why a litter of cats can have different fathers.
Post ovulation, the heat only lasts a day or two more. An interesting thing to note is that, on average, pregnancy in cats lasts up to nine weeks.
Do cats get pregnant every time they mate?
No, cats do not always get pregnant every time they mate. A lot of times, cats suffer from pseudo pregnancy, wherein the cat displays signs of pregnancy but is incapable of giving birth. If and when a cat undergoes a pseudo pregnancy, it returns to heat within the next 4-6 weeks.
Cats only get pregnant if they mate in heat, increasing their chance of getting pregnant. It is because mating triggers ovulation in female cats. So when a male cat’s semen goes inside a female cat’s body, an egg is already present and ready to release.
How can I stop my cat from getting pregnant?
The best way to stop your cat from getting pregnant is by spaying it before its first estrous cycle. Cat puberty occurs at different points, so the safest bet is to spay the cat when it reaches six months.
A popular belief is that cats become much friendlier and more social once they ovulate and have given birth to a litter. However, this is far from the truth.
Cats tend to impregnate their blood, and this, in turn, distorts the familial relations within the cat society. Such indiscriminate behavior also contributes to the overpopulation of cats.
But we are no moral police here, so we hope you find the article helpful. The fundamentals of cat mating are here to give you a clear picture of how the cat world functions and the complexities of a successful mating procedure.
Hi There, AJ Oren here. I am the founder of this amazing pet blog & a passionate writer who loves helping pet owners to learn more about their pets through my articles. I am also the content manager of this blog. I have experience in pet training and behavior, sheltering, and currently working for a veterinary clinic.
- 1 How to tell if cat mating was successful?
- 2 How many times does a cat have to mate to get pregnant?
- 3 How long does it take for a cat to finish mating?
- 4 Do cats get pregnant every time they mate?
- 5 How can I stop my cat from getting pregnant?