Why Do Cats Abandon Their Kittens?


3 Answers

James Parnell Profile
James Parnell answered
A mother cat may abandon a kitten or an entire litter for a variety of reasons.

Why do cats abandon their kittens?
  • The kitten or entire litter could be ill: Kittens are much more vulnerable to infections than are adult cats. If the mother cat detects that there is a problem with one or more of her kittens, then she will abandon them, so that they don't infect her or the other kittens in the litter.
  • The mother cat may not be maternal: Most cats have strong maternal instincts towards their kittens, but not all. The mother cat may be too young, or simply not interested, or she could be confused and sometimes injured after the birth.
  • The mother cat could be ill: If the mother cat is ill, then she may abandon the kittens in order to care for herself, especially if it was an illness caused by the birth of the kittens.
  • The environment: Sometimes the mother cat will abandon the kittens if the environment isn't suitable for raising them in. Usually, this only happens with stray cats.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
Cats may abandon their kittens if they instinctively feel that the environment is one where she would not be able to rear them properly.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
She may know that the kitten is sick and will leave it so it won't infect the other kittens.

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