Print

How Long is a Cat Gestation Period

Wondering how long your cat is going to stay pregnant? Read the following article and you'll have your answers soon enough.
And there she was - Cyrus, my female cat, slothing around on the kitchen cabinet, without a worry in the world. She's usually always either napping or licking herself clean or falling asleep somewhere around in the living room...but today was different. Today the cat was all but out cold. Not one sound woke her up. Not even the smell of chips in the air. Strange. And then it suddenly struck me, the cat was pregnant! No wonder she was acting all weird.

So now if you know nothing about cat pregnancy and other issues related to it - for example, how long does the cat gestation period last, there is bound to be confusion plastered all over your face even as I talk about this. The deal is that just as a woman undergoes certain physical and psychological changes when she's pregnant, so does a cat. What are these behavioral changes? And more importantly, how is one to know what exactly happens during gestation (the time when she's pregnant till birth) is what we will be studying in the article that follows.

Gestation Period for Cats

Gestation in cats is marked by several changes that take place in a cat's physical and behavioral ways. What are these changes, how long is a cat gestation period and what is one to expect in this stage is what we shall look into in the following paragraphs.

Cat Gestation Time
How long is a cat pregnant and what is the length of the gestation? It is said that this period will approximately last for about a month and 2-3 weeks. It roughly falls in the period of 57-70 days. But on an average, it has been seen that it will last for about 9 weeks. This makes it easier to remember cause of the similarity between the human and the cat figures - 9 months for humans and 9 weeks for cats.

However, it is impossible to determine the exact date of birthing for a cat because the time that a cat mates cannot be perfectly determined. A pair of male and female cats can mate for several hours over a period of several days and therefore the exact instance of copulation that led to the fertilization can never be calculated. The length of a cat's pregnancy can be zeroed in at around 9 weeks, give and take a few days.

Physical and Behavioral Changes
Now that we know the details of the gestation and how it is determined, let us move onto some of the important changes that take place in this period. There are several indications that mark a cat's pregnancy. Here are some factors that you can observe.
  • The cat will start to spew at the male partner almost instantly after she is pregnant (which you might misconstrue as a sign of behavioral problems) Along with that, if there are any other cats in the house, she will start hissing at them if they approach her. This aggressive behavior in cats effectively marks the end of her heat cycle.
  • Her appetite will undergo change. She'll want to be fed more frequently and consume more food.
  • Her food habits might change as well. Many owners relate that their cats begin to eat certain things which they never did before getting pregnant.
  • As the weeks progress, they start to put on weight around their mid section and abdomen.
  • In preparation of the birthing, their nipples will protrude, become softer and attain a more pinkish hue.
  • They will sleep more often and spend a lot of time in preening themselves.
  • The cat might also exhibit signs of morning sickness and might be seen vomiting.
  • Its behavior will become more mellow and you'll find the cat purring and kneading all the time and trying to seek its owner's company. For example, it might sleep on the owner's lap or constantly hover around their legs.
  • As the gestation period nears its end, the cat will exhibit a body language which indicates nesting. This is one of the most clear ways for understanding behavior of cats - You'll find her looking for hidden places and corners around the house. This is a sign that the cat is trying to find a safe place to deliver.
  • One of the sure signs that a cat is going into labor is when she'll start following her owner around the house - Literally following them everywhere.
The details of the cat gestation period will have confirmed the fact that this is an interesting time to observe a cat. The changes in the behavior and physical characteristics of a cat might turn out to be a welcome change. It is important to understand that a pregnant cat needs a lot of attention and care and you should make sure that you're giving her that. Who wouldn't want to pamper that fat ball of fur, anyway?
By Rujuta Borkar
Last Updated: 9/20/2011
Bouquets and Brickbats
Name: