As a cat or dog owner, you have many things to keep in mind in regard to your pet’s health. You may look into spaying or neutering your pet to avoid an unexpected pet pregnancy. However, sometimes there can be an issue that you never expect—perhaps an indoor cat slips outside for the evening or your dog gets away from you while you are visiting the dog park. If your pet is not fixed, you probably wonder whether your female is pregnant. After all, if your pet is pregnant you want to get her the best possible treatment and prepare your home for kittens or puppies. Instead of taking a “wait and see” approach, you may want to take your pet to the veterinarian. Nevertheless, in the meantime you should keep an eye out for these signs of pregnancy.
- Unexpected Weight Gain – This would seem like a surefire sign, and it is normally quite accurate. Unfortunately, most dogs and cats don’t begin showing much in terms of weight gain until the final couple of weeks of pregnancy. The extra weight is more likely to show up around the midsection—especially on cats.
- Swollen or Pink Nipples – Most cats and dogs will show signs of change around the nipples. Look for nipples that are larger than before and with a deep pink color. Nipple changes are often one of the first signs visible to those who are not familiar with pet pregnancy.
- Personality Changes – These changes can go in either direction. Some pets are friendlier than usual and very affectionate, while other pets are a bit withdrawn and may not want to be cuddled as much (especially if they are dealing with swollen nipples or other issues.) A drastic personality shift in either direction is something to keep an eye out for with your pet.
- Nesting Behaviors – As your pet starts moving towards the end of pregnancy, you may notice nesting behaviors. Many pets start looking for a place to have their litter. This may mean that you find blankets moved or, especially with cats, a pet who has hidden in a dark warm area.
- Upset Stomach – Dogs and cats may have a form of morning sickness just like humans do. If you notice your pet dealing with unexplained vomiting, pregnancy could be to blame.
These are just a few of the signs you may want to watch for when it comes to pregnancy and your pet. If you suspect your pet may be pregnant, it is best to go ahead and make an appointment with your vet and let him or her do an exam. That way you, your pet, and your family can be better prepared for an impending influx of puppies or kittens.