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pregnant cat advice needed!

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
Our humane society just took in a stray with a huge, pregnant belly.

Our vet found some bacteria-laden discharge (it isn't actually
visible- so not a large amount) and said that she either has an
infection going on in her birth canal, or some dead kittens in there.
They can't tell if any kittens are alive without an ultrasound, which
no vet in our town has. They put her on antibiotics and sent her home
for us to decide what to do.

The vet recommends spaying her, aborting any live kittens. The foster
person, who is a board member, is attached to this cat, and very
against aborting her kittens. I know- she has to go by group
decisions, but I'm trying to have some compassion for her, as well.

So far the cat is amazingly healthy-acting... bright and alert, eating
like a piggy, happy and affectionate.

I had a chance to see the cat yesterday and palpated her belly. It's
not like any pregnant cat I've ever felt before. Her abdomen is huge,
but not "hard" like they usually get. It's squishy- I can easily feel
separate kittens in there- pretty large kittens. But there is all this
squishy space around them- I wonder if it's filled with gas or liquid
or something because of dead kits?

Just wanted to run the belly thing past you- have you ever seen a very
pregnant cat whose belly wasn't super firm? And any ideas on how to
tell if there are some live kitties in there without ultrasound? The
vet poo-pood the idea of listening for heartbeats- said that seldom

I'm thinking we'll need to go ahead with the spay, but just thought
I'd throw it out there in case anyone has an idea of an alternative

post #2 of 5
At the feral spay/neuter clinics I volunteered at, they spayed a few females who were so far along that the babies were full term, and had fur and all. The vet techs revived the kittens, and bottle fed them. Some survived.

A uterine infection could kill both the Mom and all the kittens. I would not risk their lives. I would ask if they could do the spay with the foster Mom on premises, and ask if the vet techs would turn over any live kittens to her immediately. Then, as Mom recovers from the surgery, try reuniting her with the kits. If Momma isn't able to nurse them, the foster Mom may end up bottle feeding them, but the sooner they get out of the infected cat, the better their chances of survival.

Until you lose foster kittens or cats, you have no idea how painful it can be. I think the cats life needs to come before the kittens at this point. JMHO...best of luck with this difficult decision!
post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
Thanks, Beckiboo

That's the route I am thinking we should take. I want to collect some pieces of advice like yours for the foster mom, so that she can see that waiting IS putting momcat in danger.

I was wondering if preemie kittens might make it, if there are any alive. That might be the best thing to try for at this point.

*sigh* I've been raising bottle kits for a shelter for about 6 years now- I know all too well the pain of losing one you've been fighting to save. However, all those furry little success stories make it all worthwhile!

Thanks again for your reply
post #4 of 5
danaled...if the vet is recommending spaying her...I would follow the vet's advice. Better to lose the kittens than to lose both mom and the kittens to an infection.

I am not pro abortion..but I'm also not in favor of risking the life of the mom.

post #5 of 5
Thread Starter 
to show foster mom. Thanks, Katie!
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