Have you noticed that your cat seems ill after giving birth to kittens, possibly isn’t eating, looks too thin, or doesn’t have the stamina to care for her young?
While the majority of cats give birth to normal, healthy kittens without any problems or help, occasionally a queen and her kittens require medical attention.
So, why is a cat not eating after giving birth?
A cat might not be eating after giving birth as she might be suffering from Metritis or Endometritis.
Keep reading this article to know more about why your cat is not eating after giving birth.
Mother Cat Not Eating After Giving Birth
The reason behind the mother cat not eating after birth could be because she is suffering from metritis or Endometritis.
Uterine inflammation includes endometritis and metritis.
In cats, it often occurs three days after giving birth.
Queens will be significantly sicker than if the fetal membranes are retained.
Fever, complete indifference to her kittens, a refusal to eat, and a lack of activity are all warning signs.
She might vomit as well as consume more water than normal.
Her vagina will show a foul-smelling, dark red wine or black discharge.
She needs immediate veterinarian care, which will entail a thorough examination, diagnostic tests, supportive care, intravenous (IV) fluids, antibiotics, pain management, and more.
A bacterial infection causes the endometrium, or uterine lining, to inflame, which is a symptom of metritis, a uterine infection that typically manifests one week after a cat gives birth.
Additionally, it may appear following a medical or natural abortion, a miscarriage, or non-sterile artificial insemination.
Gram-negative bacteria like Escherichia coli, which frequently travel into the blood and result in a blood infection, are the germs that most frequently cause uterine infection.
If the infection is left untreated, septic shock, a fatal condition, may develop and cause sterility.
Symptoms and Types:
- Discharge from the vulva that smells bad; discharge with pus, or pus mixed with blood; discharge that is dark green
- Swollen, dough-like abdomen
- Dehydration (the skin stays tented for a few seconds when pinched)
- Dark red gums
- Reduced milk production
- Lack of appetite
- Neglect of kittens
- Increased heart rate if the bacterial infection has become systemic
- Difficult birth
- Prolonged delivery, perhaps with a large litter
- Obstetric manipulation
- Retained fetuses or placentas
- Natural or medical abortion, miscarriage
- Natural or artificial insemination (rare)
Check out more details about Cat Losing Weight After Giving Birth: Reasons & Solutions
In addition to a complete blood count, an electrolyte panel, a urinalysis, and a chemical blood profile, your veterinarian will do a thorough physical examination.
These tests will assist your doctor in determining how dehydrated your cat is, where the infection may have originated, and whether it has progressed to the bloodstream.
You must provide a detailed history of your cat’s health, the development of symptoms, and any possible events that might have occurred before this disease.
Your veterinarian will be able to visually inspect the interior of the uterus to check for any retained fetuses or birth material, excessive fluid accumulation, and/or abnormal amounts of abdominal fluid production as a result of uterine rupture using diagnostic tools like radiograph and ultrasound imaging.
Additionally, a sample of the vaginal discharge will be collected for microscopic (cytologic) analysis.
The bacterial populations present in the blood will be identified using a culture of both aerobic and anaerobic bacteria (bacteria that live with oxygen or without oxygen, respectively), and a sensitivity test of the isolated bacteria will be conducted so that the best antibiotic treatments can be recommended.
Hospitalization is required for your cat to get fluid treatment and to rectify and stabilize any electrolyte abnormalities.
Your cat will also receive treatment for a shock if the illness has progressed to sepsis. Until the lab’s bacterial culture and sensitivity test results are received, your cat will also need to take broad-spectrum antibiotics.
Then, based on the test results, your veterinarian may switch your pet to the antibiotic that is most effective at getting rid of the infection-causing bacteria.
Your cat will most likely react to medical care if the metritis is not advanced. Medical intervention, however, does not always stop the infection from spreading and leading to a ruptured uterus and broad abdominal illness.
The preferred course of action is to spay your cat if further breeding is not anticipated. This treatment is beneficial when the uterus contains retained fetuses or placentas, when the uterus has ruptured, or when it is seriously diseased.
A surgical cleaning of the uterus may help patients whose long-term infection is not responding to medicinal therapy.
It is preferable to hand-raise your cat’s kittens if she has a blood infection caused by bacteria and is currently nursing in order to stop the infection from spreading through her milk.
This can also shield the kittens from potential danger caused by their mother’s bloodstream containing the recommended antibiotics.
Remember that even in the absence of spaying, animals treated for uterine infections run the risk of becoming less productive or even infertile, making further breeding challenging or impossible.
You might also like to read about What To Feed Mother Cat After Giving Birth?
Why Is Cat Not Eating After Giving Birth?
Your cat might not be eating after giving birth due to birthing complications, increased anxiety and depression, and consumption of the placenta.
A female cat’s existence is fundamentally centered around giving birth.
She will grow maternal instincts as a result of the encounter, suffer from hormone problems, and possibly start caring about her diet.
A cat may occasionally experience intestinal problems after giving birth.
You may wonder why your cat isn’t eating after giving birth in light of this.
After giving birth, a cat frequently stops eating since the placentas of her newborn kittens were eaten.
However, if this issue continues for more than three days, it should be treated as a medical emergency and evaluated by a veterinarian right away.
Please keep in mind that this should not be taken lightly.
The mother’s inability to properly nurse the kittens puts their lives in peril because she won’t be able to eat. Action must be taken immediately!
Key elements consist of:
- Age of the Cat
- Type of Birth
- Internal Complications
Understanding the potential causes of a cat’s lack of appetite after giving birth is necessary.
Cats can appear to be in good condition on the outside, but they may be hiding underlying external problems.
Cats can hide their discomfort since they are resilient creatures. In the wild, they must continue fighting despite their discomfort, and that is a basic instinct they possess.
You must assume responsibility for the mother’s well-being because this, unfortunately, portends poorly for her health.
Interesting Read: Why Is My Pregnant Cat Not Eating?
Some of the reasons for cat not eating after giving birth are: –
1. Birthing Complications
Birthing difficulties are the most frequent cause.
This may include internal damage causing excruciating discomfort for the mother. A mother will become disinterested in everything, including what she is eating, when she is in this stage.
Unfortunately, this can result in death, therefore it’s critical to take rapid action. A remedy is necessary right away, regardless of whether it is a digestion problem, reproductive difficulty, or any other internal complication.
You must take your cat to the vet as you gain more knowledge on what to do when a cat stops eating after giving birth. If the behavior continues, it is always the best course of action.
2. Increased Anxiety and Depression
You have to consider the mother cat’s mental health when she doesn’t eat for a while after giving birth.
It is still possible for a mother cat to enter self-preservation mode, notwithstanding how uncommon it is. This entails disinterest in the kittens and a lack of desire to interact with them.
Additionally, kittens may be killed as a result of this.
Due to their increased nervousness after giving birth, indoor cats may also leave their kittens when they are unhappy, just as cats in the wild have been known to do so.
This involves skipping meals and becoming slothful. The hormonal changes that lead to the mother cat’s unusual behavior are the cause.
This can involve acting in ways that aren’t typical of a mother cat, such as refusing to feed or trying to avoid her kittens.
3. Consumption Of Placenta
You have to consider what the cat might have done after giving birth to her litter when she stops eating after giving birth.
In general, a mother can consume the placentas of her kittens.
Placentas are valued by moms because they are believed to have an excellent nutritional profile.
For this reason, you should check to see if the placenta is still there and whether the mother ingested it.
Cats frequently eat the placenta after giving birth because it is packed with nutrients. This benefits the cat and enables her to breastfeed without having to go hunting in the upcoming days.
The mother might not eat for a day or so if this is the case.
But if this issue persists for more than a day, it’s time to see a veterinarian.
Also, check out how to force feed a cat
What To Do If Your Cat Is Not Eating After Giving Birth?
If your cat is not eating food after giving birth take her to the vet as soon as possible.
Remember that a complete refusal of food can have disastrous effects whether your cat is ill, anxious, or just fussy.
Therefore, never starve your cat to force it to eat a particular food, even if you’re attempting to get it to follow a doctor’s diet.
Work with your veterinarian to create the ideal routine for you and your cat if an illness is the cause of your cat’s refusal to eat.
When a cat is ill, feeding canned food may help to encourage them to eat.
This could involve changing the type or consistency of their food.
In more severe situations, veterinarians can suggest syringe-feeding your cat a liquid diet or prescribing medications that stimulate appetite.
Or the veterinarian can advise installing a feeding tube to guarantee appropriate nutrients.
There are methods you can try to get your cat to eat when the disease is not the issue.
You may have learned that some foods, like liver or canned tuna, can stimulate some cats’ appetites.
Just keep in mind to serve these things in moderation. Large doses could endanger your cat by depleting or overdosing on some vitamins.
Encourage your cat to eat commercially canned food rather than human food. Your fussy cat might be persuaded to eat by heating the food or by adding fish oil, broth (make sure it doesn’t contain onions, which are poisonous to cats), or cooked egg.
Take the food away and give your cat fresh food later in the day if it still won’t eat. Your cat can start to shun the food in the future if it is allowed to harden and stale.
If your cat has only ever eaten human food, be sure to wean them off of it gradually over a period of weeks by combining their favorite human food with cat food.
You should be able to adjust the ratio over time until your pet solely eats cat food.
Using a similar strategy, several experts advise switching your cat’s food between various brands two to four times a year.
This method may lessen fussiness, as well as the emergence of food allergies and digestive issues.
Interesting Read: Why Is My Cat Still Fat After Giving Birth?
Frequently Asked Questions
Do cats lose their appetite after giving birth?
After giving birth, mother cats frequently stop eating as much. This does not imply that they cease eating altogether, though. It’s essential to go to the vet for a thorough examination when the mother stops eating.
Do cats lose their appetite after taking vaccines?
Did you notice your cat’s appetite reduction soon after taking it to the clinic for routine vaccinations? If this is the case, your cat’s refusal to eat could be due to an unfavorable reaction to the vaccinations. Although vaccines have saved the lives of millions of animals, they do have some negative side effects. Loss of appetite is one of the most prevalent adverse effects, which are usually brief and mild.
Why is it so necessary for lactating cats to have more energy and fat?
Cats who are pregnant or breastfeeding require a lot of energy, thus extra energy and fat are essential. Nursing is the most energy-intensive part of a cat’s existence. Nursing cats require 2 to 6 times the energy of an adult cat. Digestibility refers to the amount of food consumed that is actually absorbed by the cat’s body. Excellent digestibility is crucial since energy requirements are high and there is less physical space in the tummy of pregnant cats.
If you notice your cat refusing to eat after giving birth, the best course of action is to take her to a vet as soon as possible, so that the treatment should be started.
If you have questions, ask us in the comments section.