If you are new to cat breeding, you may have questions about pregnancy and the birthing process. Cats, like humans, develop inside their mothers’ wombs and are born alive.

While each pregnancy is unique, many cats exhibit typical symptoms prior to giving birth.

Some of these signs include agitation, diarrhea, and the discharge of amniotic fluid, which is commonly referred to as a cat’s water breaking.

So, how long does it take for a cat to give birth after her water breaks?

It usually takes between 12 and 24 hours for a cat to give birth after her water breaks.

Keep reading this article, to know more about what happens when a cat’s water breaks.

How Long Does It Take For A Cat To Give Birth After Her Water Breaks?

Do Cat’s Water Break Before Giving Birth?

Yes, the cat’s water break before giving birth.

Do Cat’s Water Break Before Giving Birth?

You may observe your cat frequently licking her genitalia – A discharge from the cat’s vulva occurs a few hours before birth.

Your cat’s water will also break.

Pacing, restlessness, and howling, meowing, or chirping from your cat are all appropriate at this time.

Our cat’s rectal body temperature could fall below 99 degrees Fahrenheit, causing her to vomit.

The abdomen may “drop” a few days before labor, and the cat’s nipples may grow larger, darker, or pinker.

Contractions, which are uterine contractions that move the kitten through the birth canal, may cause your cat to yowl in discomfort. A release of blood or other fluids is also possible.

It takes a queen around half a day to give birth to all of her kittens. The first kitten should arrive within an hour of water breaking.

The mother cat will relax in between kittens and should be allowed to nurse and clean the newly born kittens.

If you’ve been keeping the kittens in another box, return them to the mother cat and assist them in finding a nipple.

When she is not in labor, provide her food, kitten milk substitute, or plain, unflavored yogurt.

Your queen should be caring for and feeding all of the kittens once they are born. Your cat’s nutritional requirements will skyrocket while lactating.

Make sure she has plenty of kitten formula. Your cat’s high-energy nutritional needs will be met by a high-quality kitten formula.

Something is wrong if your cat is not nursing or eating, appears to be in pain, or is lethargic.

A bad stench, combined with recurrent bleeding, indicates an infection or a trapped kitten. If this happens to your cat, seek quick veterinarian attention.

What Does A Cat’s Water Breaking Look Like?

A cat’s water breaking looks like a clear amniotic fluid.

What Does A Cat’s Water Breaking Look Like?

The amniotic fluid is transparent.

Knowing what the amniotic fluid (the technical title for your cat’s waters!) looks like may assist you in determining whether or not your cat’s water has broken.

If your cat’s water has broken, it will be odorless and colorless. 

Amniotic fluid is transparent and straw-colored. It can be difficult to discern the difference between amniotic fluid and wee at times.

To begin with, the water may be slightly bloodstained.

Breaking Water If your cat’s water breaks, it will most likely happen right before she gives birth.

If your cat’s water breaks after many hours, it could signify that one of the kittens is blocked in the delivery canal and you should contact a veterinarian.

The color of the fluid when your cat’s water breaks are usually clear or pale yellow, and the fluid has no smell.

Amniotic fluid is extremely thin and watery in substance, odorless or mildly sweet-smelling, and light yellow in color.

It spills out when the membrane sac is ruptured, which occurs when your cat’s water breaks before or during birth.

Licking, pacing, howling, and chirping are all behaviors. Your cat’s water will also break.

Pacing, restlessness, and howling, meowing, or chirping from your cat are all appropriate at this time.

How Long After Water Breaks Does Cat Have Kittens?

A cat will have kittens after 12 to 24 hours after having her water broken.

How Long After Water Breaks Does Cat Have Kittens?

Cats typically have a gestation length of 63 to 65 days, though some pregnancies last only 60 days, while others can last up to 70.

After the 17th day of gestation, a veterinarian can typically confirm pregnancy.

The vet will feel around the abdomen for kittens.

Do not attempt this at home as you may accidentally induce a miscarriage.

Pregnant cats, like people, can experience morning sickness.

This symptom will most likely appear after the third week of pregnancy.

Whereas the mother’s water usually breaks before the birth of a human baby, this does not always happen with cats.

Kittens develop in separate sacs filled with amniotic fluid in the womb. While these sacs do occasionally rupture prior to birth, they do not always.

If your cat’s water breaks, it will most likely happen right before she gives birth.

If your cat’s water breaks after many hours, it could signify that one of the kittens is blocked in the delivery canal and you should contact a veterinarian.

Interesting Read: Can A Cat Give Birth And Still Be Pregnant?

Mother Nature instilled in your cat the desire to reproduce, and to meet this need, she permits the queen to become pregnant multiple times within the same heat cycle.

Each successful mating with a tom results in the production of a fresh egg, a process known as induced ovulation, which means a queen could become pregnant with multiple males.

Each of these successful sperm-egg unions results in a kitten suspended in its own amniotic sac.

If she’s carrying a litter of four kittens, her womb is divided into four discrete small sacs, each with a little kitten floating and developing inside.

Cats that are pregnant go through two phases of labor. The pregnant cat will begin creating a nest during the first stage by kneading or rearranging the spot she has picked for giving birth to her babies.

The cat may also have rapid breathing or an elevated heart rate, as well as secretion from the nipples.

The initial stage of labor usually lasts 12 to 24 hours. The second stage may include straining with effort, vocalization, and fluid around the genitals.

Once a kitten’s snout is visible in the delivery canal, it should be fully delivered in 15 minutes.

The queen will strain once abdominal contractions begin, and the first kitten should be born within 1 to 2 hours. The placental membrane sometimes ruptures (“breaking of the waters”) before the kitten is born, and some kittens are born entirely coated in membranes with no rips.

Pacing, licking, howling, and chirping are all common behaviors. It is not uncommon for your cat to lick her genitalia regularly before birth – the cat’s vulva discharges a few hours before birth.

It is also possible that the water in your cat’s bowel will break. Your cat should be pacing, howling, meowing, or chirping right now.

It is usual for the queen to cease eating in the final 24 hours before labor, and her temperature may fall below 100 degrees Fahrenheit (37C). 8°C).

There is almost never a vaginal discharge. Cats can spend many hours completing their first litter, especially if they have never had one before.

The renowned cry made by extremely pregnant ladies in movies is frequently followed by the baby’s birth.

This “water” that typically indicates impending labor is actually amniotic fluid.

Strong contractions during labor breach the protective amniotic sac surrounding the baby, releasing a rush of the fluid that surrounds the developing fetus throughout the pregnancy.

Cats have a two-layer amniotic sac in the case of cats. As the queen pulls the kitten through the birth canal, the outer layer ruptures, lubricating and easing delivery.

When the queen gives birth, the inner sac usually remains intact.

Because the pressure of pushing the kitten out can rupture the sac, you may not notice her “water break” until she is in the process of giving birth.

Typically, the kitten is delivered between five and thirty minutes after the commencement of greater contractions and the presence of any amniotic fluid.

The amniotic fluid may not even be visible because the queen is incredibly hygienic and licks it away as soon as it appears.

Cat’s Water Broke But No Kittens

The following are some of the complications that can occur when a cat’s water breaks but no kittens can be seen: –

1. Interrupted Labour

Interrupted labor is common enough in cats that it is accepted as a typical occurrence.

When one or more kittens are born, the mother will stop struggling and rest comfortably, suckling the already born babies.

She will eat food and drink and is fully normal in every aspect except that her size and form, as well as the existence of fetal activity, indicate that there are still kittens waiting to be born.

Some rather dependent cats may purposefully postpone or halt labor if the owner must leave.

This resting stage can take up to 24 or even 36 hours before straining resumes and the rest of the litter is born properly and easily.

Interesting Read: How To Tell If Cat Still Has Kittens Inside?

2. Abnormalities Of Labour – Dystocia

Dystocia (difficult birth) can be of maternal or fetal origin, depending on whether it is caused by issues with the queen or kittens.

Dystocia is also characterized according to whether it is caused by a blockage in the birth canal or a functional defect of the uterine muscle.

A. Obstructive Dystocia

Obstructive dystocia is caused by a mismatch between the size of the kittens and the size of the maternal delivery canal.

Disorders of the maternal skeleton (healed pelvic fractures), pelvic soft tissues (severe constipation), or the uterus itself can all contribute to the inadequate size of the mother’s birth canal (uterine torsion or rupture).

Fetal causes of obstructive dystocia include malpresentation, severe fetal deformity (for example, hydrocephalus, Siamese twins), fetal enlargement, or fetal mortality.

B. Functional Dystocia

Functional dystocia, often known as inertia, can be primary or secondary. The most prevalent cause of dystocia in cats is primary inertia.

It is observed when the uterus generates no or only weak, sporadic contractions, and typical kittens fail to exit through a regular birth canal.

Stress, old age, obesity, illness, or the prescription of certain medicines can all cause primary inertia.

It has been proposed that very small or very big litters may result in inadequate or excessive uterine distension, resulting in primary inertia.

Recent research, however, demonstrated no difference in litter size between cats with dystocia owing to primary inertia and cats with dystocia for other reasons.

Primary inertia owing to stress, often known as ‘hysterical inertia,’ is not rare in Oriental, Siamese, and Burmese breeds.

The extreme concern during the first stage halts all progress in this condition.

The sick cat is visibly and verbally upset, continuously wailing and seeking attention. She may be positively hysterical, and in such circumstances, tranquilizers might provide quick relief.

In an emergency, a veterinary surgeon would deliver this by injection, but if the cat in question is known to act in this manner, the breeder may be prepared with tablets that may be given by mouth at the start and are as effective.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Malpresentation?

Posteriorly delivered, or tail-first, kittens are quite common, so much so that this may nearly be considered a typical presentation, with no birth delay. If the first kitten arrives tail-first, there may be a delay due to the lack of the wedge-shaped head pushing behind the fluid-filled membranes. The kitten is usually handed on at some point. However, if the time between placental separation and when its nose is free of its membranes is too long, it is more likely to drown in its own fetal fluids.

What is Malposture?

The position of the head is the most important aspect of malposture. Brachycephalic cats may struggle when the embryonic head first engages the opening of the maternal pelvis. The lack of a wedge-shaped muzzle increases the likelihood of the head deflecting to one side, downward between the forelegs, or onto the chest. In a posterior or tail-first presentation, one or both forelegs may lie back along the body, while one or both hind legs may be retained forwards alongside the body to give the breech position. All of these conditions may cause a temporary delay and need extra efforts by the cat, or they may result in full obstruction.

What are some cat pregnancy tips?

When your cat is nearing the end of her gestation period, she will start preparing a nesting spot. You should prepare a box for your cat to give birth in, lined with newspapers or an old blanket. Feed a high-protein, calcium-rich diet to your pregnant cat. Some vets advise pregnant cats to eat kitten chow, which has high doses of these nutrients. Contact your veterinarian immediately if your pregnant cat stops eating for more than 24 hours, gets lethargic, or has a sudden rise in fever.

Final words

If you notice your cat’s water break there should be no need to worry as it is a typical process while giving birth, however, if you notice your cat struggling and the kittens not coming out you must take her to the vet as soon as possible.

If you have any questions, ask us in the comments questions.

Must Read: What To Expect While Cat Giving Birth For The First Time?


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