And the time has come. At the March 24th night, Lotto ate nothing. I understand something was going to happen. Something exciting. The most wonderful thing on earth: my dear little lotto was going to give birth.
She wanted her box in the living room. I prepared her box. She went in and out a couple of times. Then she climbed up on the coach and started lying there. I brought my sleeping bag to the living room and spent all night with my dear Lotto. But nothing happened. At 6:00 am in the morning, I went back to my bed.
Meow, meow… I am going to give birth!
In my sleep, I felt Lotto is trying to wake me up, meowing. But I was so sleepy, I couldn’t open my eyes for a while. When she finally managed to wake me up, I want to pet her a bit but suddenly I felt that her tail was wet. The birth was so close! We rushed to the living room, to her box. She started straining and the birth started in a few minutes, around 8 am. My mother was also there.
Fist, I saw a tiny black leg. The first baby was coming! I was so emotional, started crying. My little baby, Lotto, was a mother from now on! The first baby was born in 4-5 minutes. A male tuxedo! Lotto cut his umbilical cord with her teeth and started licking him immediately. It is generally advised that you do NOT cut the umbilical cords of the placentas. Most mothers will chew off the cord themselves. If they don’t, consult your vet.
A few minutes after the first birth, she started to strain again. And a second kitten was delivered enclosed in a bag filled with fluid. This time a male tabby! The baby tore down his own bag and his mother started licking him too. Both babies started suckling their mother’s nipples.
Then, a third kitten came, again enclosed in a bag (all kittens but the first one came like that): this time an orange! He was the only one who meowed after birth. He rushed for her mother’s breast only a few seconds after his birth.
Shortly after the birth of each kitten, its individual placenta also came. The mother ate each of them. Because it is full of hormones and nutrients that need to be returned to her body, so do not interfere in this process – just be sure she doesn’t try to eat the kitten with it out of lack of experience, especially if it’s the first birth she gave. Luckily, my dear Lotto made no mistake, as though she gave birth a couple of times – probably she didn’t, it was her first because she was under a year old.
There is one placenta per kitten, and it should be expelled after the birth of each. Note each placenta because a placenta that is left inside a mother could become infected and result in the death of the mother unless you seek medical attention. DO NOT ATTEMPT TO PULL OUT A PLACENTA. If you tug on the umbilical cord and it causes the uterus to rip, the mother could die. If you suspect that a placenta hasn’t been expelled, take her to your vet.
Around ten o’clock, a fourth kitten has come. A female tabby, this time. Three males and one female up to that point.
After the four birth, we thought it was over. We gave Lotto some food and water. She ate and drunk, while her kittens were suckling.
Around 11:15 am, seventy-five minutes after the fourth kitten’s birth, my mother said: “another baby is coming!” And yes, there was a fifth kitten! A male tabby, again. He was looking very like the fourth. He also rushed for her mother’s breast.
Cat birth tips: how to help your cat throughout the process
My dear Lotto wanted me by her side during the process. But this is not common. You should usually keep a distance when your cat is giving birth. For the most part, your cat will not need you. But do not leave her alone completely. Your presence in the area, though, will probably reassure her.
Stay far enough away not to invade her space or impede the birthing, but stay close enough to intervene if necessary.
Clean and sterilize your hands just in case you need to assist. Remove your wristwatch and rings and clean your hands with anti-microbial hand soap. Rub the soap on the backs of your hands and just past your wrist. The soap should be on your hands for at least 5 minutes with you rubbing the whole time. Use a nail brush or an old toothbrush to get under your fingernails.
Do not use hand sanitizer! It doesn’t do a thorough job of killing all the germs, and you do not want the queen licking the ingredients in hand sanitizer off the kittens, as it could make her sick. Hand washing is precautionary and the queen should be allowed to take care of the birthing process and kittens on her own. Only intervene if a kitten is in distress, and then return the kitten as soon as possible.
Kittens born their eyes closed. They remain closed for a few days. So they will be seeking out the mother’s nipples by smell and touch. Sometimes they do so right away, and sometimes they wait several minutes while they recover from birth. Make sure that the kittens nurse as soon as possible.
Keep plenty of good quality food and freshwater immediately next to the nest after the birthing has ended. She won’t want to leave her kittens, even to eat or use the litter box, so keeping them as near as possible will allow her to take care of her needs while still remaining near her kittens. It’s particularly important that she eats so that she can keep up her own energy and pass on nutrients to the nursing litter.
For the first day or so, she may not get up at all; keep the food near her bed if possible. Lotto started giving birth at 8 am and never left the nest until 10 pm. She went to her litter box, laid down for ten minutes and returned back to her kittens.
Thank you, Lotto, for trusting me and my mother that much! And thank you for this amazing, wonderful, beautiful experience. I love you.
The combined video of my dear cat Lotto giving birth to her five kittens:
- How to Help a Cat Give Birth on Wikihow