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Dr. Deb
Dr. Deb, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 9114
Experience:  I have been a practicing veterinarian for over 30 years.
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My cat of about 1 year old gave birth to 2 kittens yesterday.

Customer Question

My cat of about 1 year old gave birth to 2 kittens yesterday. I wasn't there for the first part of the birth so I never saw the placenta. She looks normal, is nursing and eating, but she's panting more than usual and has been even though it's already been a day. Sometimes she pants and her mouth opens, but not too often. The nesting place isn't too hot, though I piled a few blankets to make it more enclosed for her since she likes it better that way. I'm not sure if it's just simple overheating or there's something wrong with her. I've read online about interrupted labors, but it's already been around 25 hours and she shows no signs of straining, pushing, or squatting. I can't really tell if there are more in there since she was a fat cat before she gave birth...We didn't even know she was pregnant until she popped two under the table...
I would take her to the vet, but she's a very timid cat. She doesn't even like us picking her up, so I think the vet would be too stressful on her right now.
She also does not appear to be lethargic. She's completely normal except for her still fat body and her panting.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Deb replied 1 year ago.
Hello, I'm Dr. Deb.
I recently came online and see that your question about Mocha hasn't been answered. I'm so sorry that you've had to wait for a response, but if you still need assistance, I'd like to help if I can.
There could be several possible explanations for her behavior but the fact that she's otherwise acting fine is a good thing:
1. She still has a kitten in her which may or most likely will not be alive. An x-ray could easily determine if this is the case although I can understand why you wouldn't want to have her seen.
2. She's running a low grade fever which is commonly seen after delivery for about 24-38 hours and is normal. If you have a rectal thermometer, you can take her temperature. Normal is between 100 and 102.5. I wouldn't be too alarmed if it's high at this point as long as it decreases back to normal within another day.
3. She could be in the early stages of a uterine infection or metritis. The signs associated with this condition might include a foul-smelling brownish or reddish brown vaginal discharge, anorexia, lethargy, fever, decreased interest in the kittens.
These cats will need antibiotics for the problem to resolve but this condition sounds less likely since she's not acting sick.
4. Less likely, but still possible would be a retained placenta although this is really a very uncommon problem in cats.
If this were my cat, I would take her temperature but wouldn't get too excited if it's high.
I would monitor the color and smell of any discharge she might be producing. If it smells, then she should be seen by a vet pretty quickly.
But if she's otherwise eating and taking care of her babies, then I might give it another day or so to determine if the panting disappears.
I hope this helps but, again, my apologies for the delayed reply. Deb
Expert:  Dr. Deb replied 1 year ago.
Hello Again,
I'm just following up on Mocha. How is she doing today? Deb
Expert:  Dr. Deb replied 1 year ago.
Hi Victoria,

I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?

Dr. Deb

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