How do I know if my cat is in labor?

She has had a red discharge in the last 3 hours (blood?). She is staying very close to us, and has been sleeping on the couch on her side next to me for the last 45 minutes (she never does this). She seems exhausted. She isn't panting or showing any anxious behavior.

  • Vetinfo

    By: Erika Raines El Segundo, CA

    Replied on 04/19/2011

    It is likely that your cat is either in labor or having a complication with her pregnancy. If she is in labor, it is likely that she is having a difficult labor or dystocia. While 45 minutes is not too long for the first stage of labor, the fact that she has had red discharge for three hours with no apparent contractions is concerning. Discharge before and during a normal labor is usually clear, brownish or green with very little bright red blood, especially before any kittens are delivered. This bleeding may indicate that there is a problem with the placentas or with your cat's uterus or vagina. You need to at least call your veterinarian as soon as possible and describe in detail the amount of blood lost and what color it is.


    -Erika, DVM

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