Apr 6, 2005, 10:35 AM
My charteux is about 3 or 4, and she had her first litter of 5 kittens in the early am Tuesday.1 kitten died. But the other 4 are fine. Was wondering if the kitten escapes there spot where she has them is it OK to pick them up and put them back where they were? And also how do I know if they are getting fed right by her?they have been sleeping. So I think they are OK. And another question is the father of her kittens is a siamese that we got. Can he hurt the kittens?
Apr 7, 2005, 06:28 AM
Sorry hear about the one kitten dying. That isn't unusual though, especially for a first litter. First time mom's aren't as knowledgeable (like human moms) about their first litter. And then there are some cats who just aren't cut out to be moms at all (again, just like humans).
The first few days mom and babies will sleep a lot. As long as the kittens aren't crying incessantly (they will cry sometimes) they are most likely well fed and satisfied.
If you let your mother cat out, I would try to keep her inside for the next few weeks. Roaming moms can have accidents, leaving you to bottle feed the babies. I've seen it all too often.
If mom really trusts you, touching her kittens should not upset her. Be aware though too much handling of the kittens (especially when newborn) might upset her enough to move them. Handle them as much as she'll let you though. Studies show that kittens that are handled a lot open their eyes a couple days sooner. They usually open them at 2 weeks.
If the siamese is the father, I wouldn't worry too much about him hurting the babies. I would, however, have him neutered as soon as possible. The mother cat can go into heat as soon as two weeks after having her kittens and become pregnant again.
Getting him neutered now will stop any aggression he might show when she goes into heat again. There usually isn't a problem with neutered males killing the young kittens.
If you haven't already, get mom (and the father at some point) tested for Feline Leukemia (FeLV). FeLV is a deadly virus that is spread though fighting and mating. It can be given to the kittens in the uterus by mom which can cause them to die unexpectedly. It's a bad thing to have and cats don't live very long lives when they have this disease.
I don't mean to scare you, but I think you should be aware of any problems that might occur.
You might want to visit Kitten Rescue (http://www.kittenrescue.org/handbook.htm) in case of emergency.
For the most part, if mom is doing her job, all you should have to do is enjoy the babies! Good luck!