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Potentially Pregnant Stray

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
Hello All,

Well I have two mysteries on my hands. For the past month or so I've seen this little black kitty around our house. This isn't strange as there's about 80 million cats in our neighborhood and our yard seems to be the hang out.
However, for the past week, this little girl has been coming to visit us almost everyday. We have no idea if she's a stray or not, she has no collar and I haven't seen her "hanging out" exclusivly in anyone's driveway/backyard like most of the other cats around here.
She's also very hungry, but she could just be a mooch.
The other thing is I think she may be pregnant. I've never seen a pregnant cat before, so I'm not sure what to look for, but I picked her up and noticed that her nipples seemed really large and prominent for such a small cat. That had me looking at her belly which does seem to bulge. Moreso than my female cat who is about her same size. We have guinea pigs and she's reminding me of them when they first start to show, however when I gently feel, I can't feel any discernable shapes that may be kits, she just feels round all over.
We may be able to take her to the vet this weekend, but I don't want to take her if she belongs to someone. I'd be pretty upset if someone grabbed either of my kitties and started to take care of them.
I guess I would like people's opinions/advice on what to do. We do have two cats of our own already and I'm concerned about disease as they are primarily indoor kitties. Also, our little girl cat is very type "A" and absolutely will not tolerate any cat other than her brother. In fact, just seeing this other cat through a window causes her to attack him.
But I'm worried about this little outside girl. She's so sweet and very tiny, I doubt that she's full grown. And it's getting very cold outside now.
Thanks for any help you can offer. I can try to take pictures of her if we can't get her to the vet's.

~Julia
post #2 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by jlutgendorf
Hello All,

Well I have two mysteries on my hands. For the past month or so I've seen this little black kitty around our house. This isn't strange as there's about 80 million cats in our neighborhood and our yard seems to be the hang out.
However, for the past week, this little girl has been coming to visit us almost everyday. We have no idea if she's a stray or not, she has no collar and I haven't seen her "hanging out" exclusivly in anyone's driveway/backyard like most of the other cats around here.
She's also very hungry, but she could just be a mooch.
The other thing is I think she may be pregnant. I've never seen a pregnant cat before, so I'm not sure what to look for, but I picked her up and noticed that her nipples seemed really large and prominent for such a small cat. That had me looking at her belly which does seem to bulge. Moreso than my female cat who is about her same size. We have guinea pigs and she's reminding me of them when they first start to show, however when I gently feel, I can't feel any discernable shapes that may be kits, she just feels round all over.
We may be able to take her to the vet this weekend, but I don't want to take her if she belongs to someone. I'd be pretty upset if someone grabbed either of my kitties and started to take care of them.
I guess I would like people's opinions/advice on what to do. We do have two cats of our own already and I'm concerned about disease as they are primarily indoor kitties. Also, our little girl cat is very type "A" and absolutely will not tolerate any cat other than her brother. In fact, just seeing this other cat through a window causes her to attack him.
But I'm worried about this little outside girl. She's so sweet and very tiny, I doubt that she's full grown. And it's getting very cold outside now.
Thanks for any help you can offer. I can try to take pictures of her if we can't get her to the vet's.

~Julia
Julia..thanks for caring...what I would do is take her in and keep her seperated from your other cat right now. The post "CAT FOUND" flyers around your neighborhood. I would also take this cat to the vet to determine if she is indeed pregnant (if her owner shows up, you can tell them definitively whether she is pregnant..if no one claims her than you at least know whether she is pregnant). Although enlarged nipples and a larger belly are "signs" of pregnancy...the best way to know for sure is to have her checked out by a vet.

Katie
post #3 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thanks Katie,
We did take her in last night. She's in our office right now. Fortunately we also have a ferret who eats kitten food, so we had some of the right food for her! She seems pretty happy - is eating a drinking, using the litter box, etc.
We're fairly certain she's pregnant. Her belly is just so large compared to rest of her, that if she's not, then something else is wrong.
We'll be taking her to a low cost clinic on Sunday to get vaccinated. Are there any vaccines she shouldn't have if she is pregnant? And what about flea medication? It's pretty cold here right now so I think our flea season is over and we checked her over with a flea comb and didn't come up with anything. But just in case she has them, can she have flea medicine or do we need to wait until the kittens are born?
Oh, and how soon can she be spayed? Sorry for all the questions, I'm sure the person who sees her on Sunday should know all of this, but I like to be prepared. I hope no one minds, if we do find out for sure that she's pregnant, I'm probably going to be posting on here with a lot of questions!
Thanks for your help,

~Julia
post #4 of 14
when u take her to the vets u should check for a microchip,
some flea medications arent good for pregnant cats but i think there are some that don't harm her or her kittens.
i think she can be spayed when she is done nuring (also depending on how old she is) but maybe u should wait with that incase she does have an owner.
post #5 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by jlutgendorf
Thanks Katie,
We did take her in last night. She's in our office right now. Fortunately we also have a ferret who eats kitten food, so we had some of the right food for her! She seems pretty happy - is eating a drinking, using the litter box, etc.
We're fairly certain she's pregnant. Her belly is just so large compared to rest of her, that if she's not, then something else is wrong.
We'll be taking her to a low cost clinic on Sunday to get vaccinated. Are there any vaccines she shouldn't have if she is pregnant? And what about flea medication? It's pretty cold here right now so I think our flea season is over and we checked her over with a flea comb and didn't come up with anything. But just in case she has them, can she have flea medicine or do we need to wait until the kittens are born?
Oh, and how soon can she be spayed? Sorry for all the questions, I'm sure the person who sees her on Sunday should know all of this, but I like to be prepared. I hope no one minds, if we do find out for sure that she's pregnant, I'm probably going to be posting on here with a lot of questions!
Thanks for your help,

~Julia
Julia...so glad you took her in....ok...now to your questions:

Your vet can let you know which shots she should not receive if she is indeed pregnant....the vet will also inform you of any flea products that you should use if she indeed has fleas.

If she is pregnant...and you want to care for her until she has her kittens..then she can be safely spayed when the kittens are weaned (around 6 to 8 weeks after they are born). If she is early enough in the pregnancy and you are concerned that she is too young or you feel you are not able to care for her during the delivery, termination of the pregnancy through spaying is also an option...but ultimately that choice is up to you. Of course, if she isn't pregnant...then you can have her spayed as soon as possible. Let us know how it goes at the vet and please feel free to continue to post any questions that you may have as this forum has a lot of knowledgeable people.

Katie
post #6 of 14
It is very important that you do not give her any over the counter flea medications. Hartz flee medication almost killed one of my siamese. It is especially dagerous to pregnant cats. The only safe flea treatment is Advantage or Frontline which you can get from your vet. They are safe to use on pregnant cats. I own a siamese cattery and I give my expectant mothers Advantage.
post #7 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all your answers. She's doing really well. She's the most affectionate cat I've ever seen! And she is constantly kneading, even the floor when she eats!
I'm anxious to get her to the vets. She seems so small to be pregnant (though she is the same size as my adult female cat) so maybe she isn't as young as I think.
I'll let people know what we find out!
Thanks,
~Julia
post #8 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by jlutgendorf
Thanks for all your answers. She's doing really well. She's the most affectionate cat I've ever seen! And she is constantly kneading, even the floor when she eats!
I'm anxious to get her to the vets. She seems so small to be pregnant (though she is the same size as my adult female cat) so maybe she isn't as young as I think.
I'll let people know what we find out!
Thanks,
~Julia
Julia...how did it go at the vet?? Did you find out whether this cat is pregnant?

Katie
post #9 of 14
Thread Starter 
Well, we got a new digital camera, so to test it out, we took some photos of our little girl! However, I'm not sure how to post them here. We're taking her to the vet tomorrow, so hopefully we'll know more then.
I have so many questions. Is she really pregnant, if so how far along is she? Is she too small to be pregnant? Hopefully I'll get answers to all of those tomorrow.
Thanks for everyone's help! I'll let you know what we find out.

~Julia
post #10 of 14
Good Luck Julia....here is a post on how to post pictures:

http://www.thecatsite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=14474

It may not work as some features were disabled for a server upgrade.

Katie
post #11 of 14
Thread Starter 
Katie, thanks for that thread. I should have known how to do that seeing as how my boyfriend's a web designer!

So here's one of her laying on the futon:


Here she is getting some loving from the boyfriend:


Here's her belly, potentially filled with babies:


And finally here she is kneading a fuzzy blanket:


Any thoughts on if she's pregnant or not?
Thanks,

~Julia
post #12 of 14
Hey Julia....well, I'm not a vet..so please let the vet verify....she does 'look' pregnant (at least she looks like the pregnant ferals that come to the clinic I volunteer at).

Katie
post #13 of 14
Thread Starter 
Well unfortunatly the clinic was cancelled today, so I'm going to try to take her to an early morning appointment this week.
Meanwhile, I'd like to just assume that she's pregnant - that way no surprizes. She's being free fed Iams kitten food. Obviously she has fresh water. She has our "guest" futon to lay on with lots of extra towels and blankets. We're setting up a nesting box in the office closet - though she doesn't seem too interested in it. She'll sit with us there if we pet her, but she prefers to rest on the futon. The room is quiet and she's kept separate from our other two cats.
I'm going to get some materials ready for the birth in case she needs help, though if cats are anything like most small animals, it's going to happen when we're away!
Can anyone tell me if we need to be doing anything else or doing anything differently? Any tips or advice?
Thanks,

~Julia
post #14 of 14
Based on the pictures, I would say that she is indeed pregnant and the kittens will be born in two weeks or less. The reason I say this is because she has lost the fur around her nipples. This happens around the 7th week of pregnancy (out of 9 weeks total).

From the sound of things you are doing everything just fine. The only thing I would say is to add canned food to her diet. She needs all the nutrition she can get and since her abdomen is so full of kittens, canned food will be easier on her digestive system.

As a precaution, it would be a good idea to stop at the pet supply store and pick up a small animal nursing bottle and some kitten formula. You can make heat packs by filling a couple of old socks with rice and tying off the ends to make a bag. These become very warm when you zap them in the microwave for a minute or two and they stay warm for a couple of hours.

Also, now is the time to look up the phone number and address of the nearest 24 hour emergency vet clinic. Write it down and use Mapquest or another similar website to map directions to the clinic from your house. Put these in an easy to remember place, maybe stuck to the fridge with a magnet. That way if something goes wrong, you won't have to waste time looking through the Yellow Pages and figuring out directions.

I'm definitely not trying to scare you. Most of the time things go smoothly. But there's definitely peace of mind that comes with knowing that you are prepared for the worst case scenario. And now that you're prepared for the worst, you can expect the best. Have fun. Babies are awesome!

Oh, and one more thing, just for fun. Next time you're petting Mama, stop and rest the palms of your hands on her tummy, toward her sides. You will probably be able to feel the kittens moving inside her!
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