New mum cat is rough with babies!!

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Megsy-
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New mum cat is rough with babies!!

Post by Megsy- » Sat Jun 30, 2018 8:47 pm

Hi All,
So our family cat has recently had 4 kittens 2 weeks ago, their eyes are now open and they are slowly starting to move around.
Once maybe 2 times a day I use gloves to remove the kittens from the bottom of the wardrobe where they currently live so that the mummy cat has space to feed them all (it's a cramped up place she choose to put them) I have slowly started to introduce skin contact by just gently stroking their heads with my finger and Lacey (the mum) watches me do that and is fine with it.

There's one cat who is more alert and eager to get out there then the others he will shakily try to walk around and gets quite far but when he comes back to Lacey she instantly grabs the kitten with both paws, pulls him towards her and puts her whole mouth over his neck to like pin him in place sometimes she uses her feet to like kick against him but then she often goes back into vigorously cleaning him. She still let's him feed but he's the only one out of the 4 that ventures out by himself sometimes and he explores and I feel like she don't like that.

But as my first time experiencing having kittens I've never seen that happen before and it scared me because she was being so rough so I told her off but she did it again later. Today he crawled on my dress so I'm not sure if it's because she's **** because she smells him on me or if it's because he's looking to go out and be inquisitive.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated as I'm not sure what to do :-(

Thanks in advance.

vanilla
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Re: New mum cat is rough with babies!!

Post by vanilla » Sat Jun 30, 2018 9:07 pm

Welcome to the forum.

I remember when mine had kittens, I kept them all safe in a large crate. She originally gave birth under the dining room chairs. After all kittens were born, we moved them to the large crate, with little handling.

They couldn't venture too far. We handled them but didn't take them away from mum too long. Sounds like the kitten venturing out is coming back smelling differently and she's either telling him off or not sure it's hers. Vigorously cleaning him ensures he smells like hers.

Probably best not to let him venture out until their 'sea legs' have passed :)

Megsy-
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Re: New mum cat is rough with babies!!

Post by Megsy- » Sat Jun 30, 2018 9:33 pm

Thank you for welcoming me to the forum :)

You don't know how much you're response has put me at ease, I thought it had something to do with the minor contact I was making with the kittens. How long do you think before they can venture out and she won't be so rough with them? When they are out of the wardrobe I sit and watch them because after feeding them Lacey walks away and the T-shirt they are sitting on I place back in to the wardrobe with them on it just to make sure they don't all run away. I've also been wondering how long until we can properly handle them because at the moment we use gloves so as to not taint their scent but we don't even touch them alot even with gloves.

Thank you for your response and advice.

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Lilith
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Re: New mum cat is rough with babies!!

Post by Lilith » Sun Jul 01, 2018 4:57 am

Hi Megsy, yes, mother cats can seem to be rough with their kittens, and they can be possessive too.

With my first Siamese litter I built an indoor cat run with different levels and ladders ... when the kittens started to climb their mother was horrified; she'd wait at the top, grab the kitten by the scruff and DROP it on the floor :o

The run wasn't practicable in the end and they moved into the front room ... a neighbour arrived wanting to use the phone, which was in the front room - and the mother cat went for him and chased him out!

Mothers do pin their kittens down and maul them about, but the kittens seem to like it; they can choose very cramped nests, but it's amazing how they manage, bless them.

All the best with them :)

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fjm
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Re: New mum cat is rough with babies!!

Post by fjm » Sun Jul 01, 2018 7:07 am

Well, my experience was rather different - my childhood Siamese had several litters before we finally grasped that (a) it is a lot more difficult to stop a cat breeding than it is a dog, and (b) she thoroughly disliked having kittens to look after. Her main idea was to dump the kittens onto me, and head off into the night. I remember waking in the early hours as she carried a whole litter of five kittens just a few days old into my bed, tucked them under the duvet beside me, and then vanished till morning... I think if she had understood about spaying she would have been crying outside the vet's door long before we took her in to have it done!

Cats can certainly be rather robust with their kittens - the carrying by taking the whole head into the mouth took me by surprise at first - very different from lifting by the scruff of the neck, but much safer when you think about it. Don't be surprised if Mamma decides it is time to move nests soon - cats often do in the first few weeks.

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Lilith
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Re: New mum cat is rough with babies!!

Post by Lilith » Sun Jul 01, 2018 9:03 am

Lol fjm, Jacinth did that too! She went into labour in my bed and when they were tiny often brought the litter into bed with me and went off to have a nice peaceful kittenless snooze on the duvet ... she liked the best of both worlds, that one. But she was still a possessive little tigress. Her last kitten (only one in the litter due to hormonal problems) she HAD to sleep in bed with, for weeks, or she'd bawl the house down. Anything for peace.

And I did have one moggie girl who had absolutely no conception (ha ha) of motherhood. If I hadn't fished those kittens out of the nest every morning and brought them, in a basket, into the livingroom, she would have left them cold and unfed all day, the little baggage. She was another one who was glad to be spayed.

But I think most mothers are a bit better than that. :)

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Re: New mum cat is rough with babies!!

Post by vanilla » Sun Jul 01, 2018 11:59 am

Megsy- wrote:Thank you for welcoming me to the forum :)

You don't know how much you're response has put me at ease, I thought it had something to do with the minor contact I was making with the kittens. How long do you think before they can venture out and she won't be so rough with them? When they are out of the wardrobe I sit and watch them because after feeding them Lacey walks away and the T-shirt they are sitting on I place back in to the wardrobe with them on it just to make sure they don't all run away. I've also been wondering how long until we can properly handle them because at the moment we use gloves so as to not taint their scent but we don't even touch them alot even with gloves.

Thank you for your response and advice.
I don't know how friendly your mumma cat is. Mine is really docile and didn't mind us handling the kittens the moment they were born. Does she feed the kittens outside of the wardrobe? Maybe you could put a cardboard box outside the wardrobe with the T-shirt and the kittens could stay there. Mine were in a large crate and they could venture out into the room. Nowhere else.

You can start handling them now. Since socializing kittens with humans is an important part of their early growth. Before you pick them up, make sure you allow mumma cat to sniff your hand. Pet her head and show her affection, ensuring her that you are not a threat. If she purrs, licks your hand or otherwise welcomes your petting, gently pick up a kitten one at a time.

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Re: New mum cat is rough with babies!!

Post by Megsy- » Sun Jul 01, 2018 12:10 pm

Lacey is very friendly, she only tries to swipe at you when playing or sometimes if you touch her belly. She feeds the kittens inside the wardrobe that's where they sleep but occasionally I like to try and get them out 1 or 2 times a day just so she has a bit more room and that they can get some light.
I think my best bet will be to get a big box for Lacey and the kittens the only thing I'm worried about is moving them again however.

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