When cats are pregnant, they go through stages. A cat takes roughly 3 to 3 ½ months to go from initial contact with the male until the kittens are born. Your cat will show subtle signs for the first three weeks; then the physical signs will begin to show. Once the physical signs begin, within six weeks you will have kittens in your house. If your cat begins to show, the first two stages make an appointment with a veterinarian to make sure.
Among the first signs that your cat is pregnant is the decreased level of activity. Your cat may be sleeping most of the day. If your cat is usually an outside cat, she will want to stay inside most of the day. She will lose interest in male cats. If your cat was in heat immediately before these first signs it is almost a sure sign. With the first three weeks, there will be no physical signs other than this.
Your cat will start to show both increased affection and emotion, or if your cat is usually affectionate, she may appear withdrawn or suddenly shy and elusive. Your cat will seem to be anxious, especially if she has never had kittens before.
Around the third week, you will notice your cats nipples become enlarged and pink. Once this happens, your cat will begin to produce milk quickly up until the birth of the kittens. Your cat will not gain weight until she is into her third week. Within a day before having kittens your cat may show signs of a milky discharge. Your cat’s temperature will also drop which means birth is imminent.
The last pregnancy stage for your cat is “Nesting”. When your cat is near her time to deliver the kittens she will begin to look for a secluded space where she can have them. Your cat will start investigating closets, laundry baskets, dark corners in basements or attics, or even under stairs.
Your cat can take hours to have all of her kittens. She will prefer to do this in private, but if you are quiet and still, you can watch. Once the kittens are born, your cat will clean them by licking them, which will remove the film that the kittens are born with. The kittens will find their way to their mother to feed quickly. Your cat will want to be left alone with the kittens for about a day.