How to Induce Cat Labor

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There is no over-the-counter product that can be used to induce cat labor, but a cat that is about to have kittens can be prepared for by providing material for a nest. Encourage cats to have their kittens in a timely fashion with help from a veterinarian in this free video on cat labor.

Part of the Video Series: Cat Health
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Video Transcript

Hi, I'm Dr. Carrie Burhenn and I'm a veterinarian here at the Feline Medical Clinic in Vancouver, Washington. I'm here today to give you a little information about cats and inducing labor. So let's get one thing straight, there's nothing over the counter that you can give a cat to cause them to have their kittens. Labor is determined when the kittens are developed enough that they can signal the mother's brain that she needs to have her kittens. She'll start nesting behavior, and when the chemicals reach a certain point labor will be induced on her own. Cats can run into trouble with their pregnancies where they are having a difficult labor and this is a different matter. You can't induce labor in your cats at home, but you can make an environment that actually is conducive to them having kittens. Providing nest box material, clean but shredded rags, newspapers, a box, a quiet area for her to have the kittens. Sometimes even providing such an area will actually allow her to have the kittens in a more timely fashion that's predictable so that she can be monitored to make sure everything goes smoothly during the actual labor itself. If your cat actually does have difficulty during her labor you should take her to the veterinarian and he or she can actually administer a drug that can assist with actually a cat having her kittens. If there's an obstruction they can take a x-ray to make sure there are no kittens that are stuck in the actual birth canal itself. Or even plan a c-section, where the kittens are removed surgically from the queen, so they can survive and the queen can actually go on to nurse them normally and raise them. If you have any questions, if you have a cat that you think is pregnant, but you're not sure if they are close to term you should have her examined by a veterinarian who can give you an idea of when the kittens can be expected and to provide suitable materials and suitable diet so the kittens that she will have will be born healthy and live long, happy, well-adjusted and socialized lives.

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