15 Facts About Cat Pregnancy That You Probably Didn't Know

By Sarah Jeanne Terry

In case you were wondering, here are some of the strange and specific facts about cat pregnancy that you need to know.

1. The process of a cat preparing to have her kittens is called queening.

cute cat with silver Crown
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Yeah, that sounds pretty perfect, because everything about cats is royal.

2. When a cat is pregnant, her nipples "pink up."

Pregnant cat.
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You'll notice a cat's nipples becoming red and enlarged as a cat prepares to have her babies. This is known as "pinking up" which again sounds pretty royal.

3. Cats can get pregnant as early as 4-months-old.

Pregnant cat
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That may seem super young, but it's possible.

4. Cat pregnancy lasts 63-65 days total.

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That's just over two months, so things happen pretty fast in the feline world. That, combined with a cat's potential to get pregnant so young, means a female cat could be a mama by 6-months-old.

5. A cat in heat will go to all kinds of lengths to get to a tom.

Cats will stand at the door, they will make a lot of noise, and they might try to sneak out. The urge to mate will take over their whole existence. It's their single-minded obsession that only ends when they get pregnant or spayed.

6. Domestic cats usually go into heat from January to August.

Cats
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That's right, cats have a specific heat season, but it lasts a long time. Female cats have two to four heat cycles per year. And each lasts about four days if the cat mates, but can last 7-10 days if she doesn't.

7. A cat doesn't ovulate until she has mated with a tom.

American shorthair cat in the act of mating
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The male cat's penis and mating style actually helps stimulate ovulation. After the cats mate, the female cat will ovulate, so the eggs can be fertilized.

8. Cats can experience a feline version of morning sickness.

Sick white cat
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A cat may vomit or refuse food when she's pregnant, which reminds us of women going through morning sickness.

9. Cats have an average of four kittens per litter.

Kitten Yawning
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But they can have fewer, and they can even have as many as eight. Younger cats tend to have the larger litters, possibly because their bodies are strong enough to support all those kittens.

10. One litter can contain kittens from different toms.

White and orange newborn kitten in a plaid blanket
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If a cat mates with more than one tom during her heat cycle, she can have kittens by more than one father in the same litter.

11. Pregnant cats become extra affectionate.

When a female cat is pregnant, she might crave extra attention from her humans. And by all means, give it to her. Pregnancy can be a tough time, so we totally get why she might want a little comfort.

12. A pregnant cat can get weird pregnancy cravings.

Similar to humans, cats can crave specific foods when they're pregnant. Also, cats tend to be hungrier during pregnancy, which is totally normal because they're feeding their growing babies.

13. Pregnant cats tend to have more accidents.

kitten in blue plastic litter cat
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When a cat is pregnant, she might have trouble making it to the litter box. Don't get mad at them. Their kittens push on their bladders, so it's hard for them to hold it in.

14. A cat can go back into heat 1-6 weeks after giving birth, so she could be nursing one litter and pregnant with another.

Cat Nursing Kittens
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A cat's reproductive cycles move very quickly, so it's possible for a queen to have a few litters of kittens per year.

15. Kittens are always born with blue eyes.

kitten
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At birth, a kitten's eyes are always blue. Over the course of the few months after birth, eye color may change a lot until it lands on its final color.