If you have a pregnant cat, it’s important to change her diet to meet her changing nutritional needs.
Eating for two
Most cats are more than capable of looking after themselves throughout pregnancy, but there are still a number of ways you can help her along the way.
From the fourth week of your cat’s pregnancy, your cat will need an extra nutritional boost. You should increase her protein and calories by about 15 per cent every week. It’s easiest to do this by switching to a high quality manufactured kitten food as the higher levels of nutrients are just what your cat needs.
Fortunately, pregnant cats are sensible eaters. As long as you provide enough food, your cat should regulate her daily intake to suit her own needs. Don't worry too much about weight gain – most cats gain about 40 per cent during pregnancy.
Healthy mothers pass on immunity to their kittens, so make sure your cat has all her vaccinations up to date prior to birth. Avoid giving medication during pregnancy because of the possible harm it can cause developing foetuses. The only exceptions are certain anti-parasite medications, such as flea preparations, but always check with your vet first.
Newborn kittens are entirely dependent on the milk supplied by their mother for the first four weeks of life. Keep feeding your cat kitten food for some time after the birth. Depending on the number of kittens, she may eat as much as four times her normal food while nursing. Only after weaning, should you move her back to regular adult formula food.
About the Purina PetCare Advice Centre
The Purina PetCare Advice Centre brings together a team with in-depth knowledge, experience and special interests with the skills to advise about health and nutrition, behaviour, training, socialisation, as well as basic first aid for your cat or dog. Our team of dedicated pet lovers can also provide information about Purina products and services to help you give your pet the best possible care. If you've got a question about any aspect of pet care, then ask the Purina PetCare Advice team.