How to Know If Your Cat Is Close to Labor

By Jennifer Magnesi

You may be anxious and worried about the prospect of your cat giving birth in the near future, especially if it is the first time your cat has had a litter. When it is a few weeks before your cat is to deliver, you want to look for the common signs of impending labor. You also want to ensure she has everything she needs to make the labor as comforting and safe as possible.

Take your cat's temperature daily starting at about one to two weeks before she is due to deliver. You will notice her temperature is about 101 to 102 degrees Fahrenheit. When it drops below 100 degrees, she is within days of going into labor.

Look for changes in your cat's behavior, such as being more anxious and restless. She may begin to tremble hours before going into labor and pace back and forth between rooms in your home. When it gets near to labor time, she will lick her abdomen and genitalia incessantly.

Watch to see if your cat begins nesting. She will start to nest, or look for a safe place to deliver her kittens, a few days to a week before labor. This most likely will be a dark and cool spot in a quiet area in your home; typically in a closet or dark corner of a room. As she gets nearer to labor, she will visit her nesting spot more often.

Check your cat's food bowl several times a day in the weeks leading up to labor. Shortly before delivering her kittens, you will notice her appetite change to little or no appetite. If it has been several hours since food has been touched in her bowl, and this is unusual, she may be getting close to delivery.