Has your cat recently given birth to kittens? If yes, then in your house, it must be a busy and exciting time. While the mother cat is busy caring for her kittens, her body is undergoing hormonal changes in order to prepare for her next heat cycle. Also, you might be wondering “How soon can your cat get pregnant again after having kittens?”
A cat can become pregnant after 4 weeks of having kittens if it’s still breeding season. Most cats will experience an estrus cycle, also known as a heat cycle, for about 4 weeks after weaning their kittens. It’s possible that she’s still nursing and in heat at the same time.
Keep reading the article to know all about cats getting pregnant after having kittens and its possible risks.
What Are The Estrus Signs?
The most notable estrus sign is the change in behavior of your cat. They become very affectionate and demand more attention.
The presence of vaginal blood in a cat in heat is unusual. In cats, the most noticeable indicators of estrus are behavioral.
Most cats become very friendly, even demanding, rubbing against their humans (or items like furniture) in an attempt to obtain attention.
They roll around on the ground. They raise their rear quarters into the air and tread with their back legs when stroked along the back or spine.
They get pretty vocal as well. Owners find these changes in behavior irritating, and they may believe their cat is suffering from a rare ailment.
When a female cat is in heat, she may urinate more frequently or even spray urine on vertical objects (marking).
The urine contains both pheromones and hormones, which act as signals to other cats about their reproductive status.
Intact (unneutered) male cats are attracted to queens in heat for this reason. This could be the first sign that a young cat has entered puberty in some situations.
Tomcats (unneutered male cats) will arrive in your yard or neighborhood for the first time. They may try to enter the house to mate with the female or spray urine on the house to designate the territory (and female) as theirs.
When the queen is in heat, she can be bred at any moment. Cats are induced ovulators, which means that the act of mating causes the ovaries to release eggs.
Ovulation takes three to four matings within a 24-hour period for most females. Cats may mate numerous times in a short amount of time, and it only takes a minute or two for them to do it.
During this time, queens may mate with multiple different tomcats, thus a litter of kittens could have several different fathers. The queen will go out of heat in a day or two after ovulation has happened.
How Frequently Can A Cat Have Kittens?
A cat can give birth to as many as five litters per year.
A cat’s gestation period is about two months after she is pregnant, allowing her to have up to five litters every year. There are a few possible indicators of pregnancy if your cat wandered outside during the summer heat.
As your cat’s body prepares to generate milk for its kittens, the first noticeable indicator is darkened and swollen nipples.
Her increased appetite and larger abdomen will be the second and most noticeable signs.
As she approaches the conclusion of her pregnancy, she may begin nesting by looking for a private location to create a comfortable birthing zone.
Look in laundry baskets and closet nooks for her. If you think your cat is pregnant, make an appointment with your veterinarian for a short examination and possibly an x-ray or ultrasound.
Pseudopregnancy occurs when a cat develops all of the symptoms of pregnancy, including lactation, without actually being pregnant.
When Are Cats Able To Get Pregnant Again?
A female cat is able to get pregnant again after every two to three weeks.
Female cats are induced ovulators, which means they don’t ovulate until they’re mated or manually stimulated.
If a female cat does not mate when in estrus, her hormone levels will decline, and the estrus cycle will end until it restarts itself in two to three weeks.
She can easily become pregnant during her first post-birth estrus cycle if she mates.
Ovulation normally happens 20 to 50 hours after mating, and the eggs are viable (meaning they can be fertilized) for about a day.
The eggs are fertilized in the oviduct and then transferred to the uterus via the uterine horn, where they are implanted in the uterine lining in 10 to 12 days.
Before ovulation, cats may mate many times, and a female cat’s litter may contain kittens from multiple sires.
A female cat in estrus on the street may mate with two or more male cats throughout the duration of the estrus cycle, which can last up to 21 days, with an average of seven days.
Between the ages of four and six months, both male and female kittens can reach sexual maturity, making it possible for a kitten to impregnate his mother.
This could be deadly for both the female cat and her offspring. Repeat pregnancies with short intervals between births might be harmful to a cat’s health.
A cat’s physical resources can be depleted by bearing kittens, giving birth, and feeding them, leaving her hungry and fatigued.
Responsible purebred cat breeders keep this in mind, limiting the number of litters a female cat will have and maintaining a fair gap between litters to allow her to completely wean her kittens and regain her maximum health.
The female cat will be retired at some point, at which time she will be spayed to prevent any additional pregnancies and to allow her to enjoy her well-deserved senior years.
It’s recommended to have your cat spayed after the kittens have been weaned if she has had kittens and isn’t a good breeding cat. Meanwhile, keep an eye on her and make sure she doesn’t have access to any intact male cats or the outdoors.
Can A New Mother Cat Become Pregnant While Still Nursing Kittens?
Yes, a new mother cat can become pregnant while still nursing kittens.
When you find out your cat is going to be a mother, you may experience a range of emotions, from excitement to surprise.
It’s difficult to envision an adorable little 6-month-old kitten pregnant. Female cats, on the other hand, grow swiftly and can conceive as young as 4 months old, giving birth to a litter of kittens that are not much younger than she is.
A cat can become pregnant at any time during her receptive, fertile cycle or while she is in heat. She’ll grow more talkative and friendly, and she’ll want to mate with any close tom.
She’ll release an egg after mating if she can find a receptive tom, increasing her chances of becoming pregnant.
A cat’s pregnancy lasts about two months, after which she’ll seek out a peaceful location, or utilize the birthing box you’ve graciously given, to do what comes naturally when the time comes.
She’ll get into a routine of nursing, cleaning, and caring for her kittens once they’re all born. You’d think that getting pregnant again would be the last thing on her mind after giving birth, but some cats return to their heat cycles extremely rapidly.
Your cat might theoretically become pregnant with a new litter anywhere from 48 hours to two weeks after giving birth to the previous one, depending on her natural cycle. Her fertility or heat cycles are unaffected by nursing.
What The Complications Of Getting Pregnant After Giving Birth?
The complication of a cat getting pregnant after giving birth is that she is unable to provide enough nutrients and support to ensure the proper growth of her developing fetuses.
As you may expect, becoming pregnant so soon after giving birth is not ideal.
When you combine the stress and needs of pregnancy with the stress and demands of nursing a newborn litter of kittens, your cat’s health can suffer.
She must not only provide enough nourishment and support for her developing fetuses, but she must also produce enough nutritious milk for her kittens to grow properly.
That may be too taxing for her body, which may still be recovering from the last pregnancy and birth.
How To Stop The Heat Cycle Of Cat After She Becomes Pregnant?
To stop the heat cycle of your cat after she becomes pregnant, contact your vet and get your cat spayed or neutered.
Don’t believe the urban legend that all cats must have at least one litter before being spayed. This is simply not true, and you will end up with more kittens to care for or find loving homes for.
Yes, they’re adorable, but they’ll all be capable of becoming pregnant or fathering additional kittens in a matter of months.
Get your cats fixed before the population grows, even more, to break the cycle and limit the number of homeless cats.
Consult your veterinarian to determine the best time to spay or neuter your mama cat and her kittens, and keep them all indoors, away from any potential love interests, until they are all spayed or neutered.
How To Take Care Of Pregnant Cat?
You could take care of a pregnant cat by supporting her morally and physically and consulting your vet.
Your cat may have “morning sickness” in the early stages of pregnancy, which manifests as a lack of appetite or vomiting.
If this continues, take them to the veterinarian. They may experience exhaustion as a result of the spike in hormones and changes to their uterus.
After the first few weeks have passed, this phase will fade.
Your cat, like many other females in the animal kingdom, may require extra food and calories while pregnant.
As their pregnancy progresses, they’ll eat around 1.5 times their typical diet, so make sure they have constant access to it.
Your veterinarian will most likely advise you to feed your pregnant cat kitten food or food labeled for pregnant and lactating cats throughout their pregnancy and while nursing their young.
Viruses can infect kittens before they are born, so make sure your cat is up to date on her vaccinations.
If your pregnant cat is due for a vaccine, deworming, or flea treatment, or if they require medicine, consult your veterinarian first to ensure that the therapy is safe for them.
Most vaccines are not safe to provide during pregnancy, so it’s preferable to get vaccinated before breeding.
Frequently Asked Questions
Should I let my cat have an estrus cycle or a litter of kittens before spaying her?
Ans. There are no compelling reasons to allow a cat to go through an estrous cycle or have a litter of kittens before spaying. Cats can become pregnant during their first estrous cycle, increasing the risk of unintentional breeding. A brother cat may breed with his sister, a father may breed with his daughter, and a son may breed with his mother because cats are indiscriminate. It’s a frequent misconception that allowing female cats to have kittens will make them more friendly and sociable. This is simply not true, and it only adds to the terrible problem of cat overpopulation.
How many fathers can a litter of kittens have?
Ans. All fertilized eggs will migrate to the female cat’s uterus in around five days once her basic desires have been met. The average litter has three to four kittens, however, up to nine kittens are considered normal. Each kitten could have a different father depending on how many males she encountered throughout her heat cycle.
How many kittens will my cat have?
Ans. Your cat can have as few as one or as many as ten or more. However, a litter typically consists of 3-6 kittens. In general, younger, less experienced queens will bear fewer kittens than older, more experienced queens.
Your cat can get pregnant after 48 hours to 2 weeks after giving birth, but this does not mean that she should. Being pregnant again after such a small time period will have a huge toll on her body and her kittens.
Therefore, you should avoid your cat being pregnant after giving birth by stopping her meeting with tomcats or getting her spayed or neutered.
If you have any unanswered questions feel free to ask us in the comments section.