Yes. Cats are absolutely adorable creatures that love their kittens. They have this natural motherly instinct that makes them care for and protect the kittens until they are capable of surviving on their own.
But do Cats Recognize Their Kittens?
Cats are different from humans and do not remember people entirely based on their faces or other physical features. Yet, they can recognize their kittens, among others. Cats use the sense of smell to look for their babies. They also locate and recognize them through their cries. Young kittens also identify their mothers through their fragrances.
Yet, the motherly love of a cat is not limited to their own babies. They love all kittens around them as they believe themselves to be parents to those kittens as well.
Do Male Cats care about their Kitten?
While we talk about the instinct of a mother cat, the father’s role must not be ignored. Male cats are less emotionally attached to their babies, but if they are not domesticated and have to hunt for food, usually fathers take the responsibility. Instead of taking care of young kids, they leave the female cats to care for the kittens while they bring food home.
Do Some Cats Hate their Kittens?
No, cats do not hate their kittens, but they might get annoyed and frustrated by the kitten’s continuous need for attention. After a particular time, like around 12 weeks, the cats want their kittens to live independently and do not like to keep them anymore. It does not mean that they hate their babies. Instead, it’s their way of teaching them independence.
Do Cats Abandon Their Kittens?
It would not be right to say that cats abandon their kittens. However, they leave the kittens to push them to survive on their own. Young kittens typically need their mothers around them for up to 12 weeks. After 12 to 16 weeks, kittens can take solid food and do not need their mothers around them all the time.
Do Kittens die when their Mothers Leave them?
The kitten may experience separation anxiety when their mothers leave them. They look for them around and try to find them. Separation is difficult for both the mother and the kittens as they are confused about the change. They may also refuse to eat for a few days and seem anxious. This anxiety is short-lived, and eventually, kittens learn to live independently.
Why Do Cats Show Aggression?
If you have seen your snuggly cat become a roaring tigress after having babies, do not worry. Maternal aggression is quite common in cats and occurs as a result of hormonal fluctuation. They take on their attitude to save their babies from harm. Keeping them in an isolated area can help reduce her fear of separation from the kittens and reduce aggression towards you.
When is the Right Time to Separate the Kittens from the Cat?
Kittens tend to have this immense love for their mothers that makes them want to stay with the cats all the time. However, as mentioned above, the cat may get tired of caring for the kitten and want them to live independently. So, you may take the kittens away from the cat between 10 to 16 weeks and take care of the baby cat.
Studies show that kittens who spend more time with their mothers socialize better.
Do Cats like it when you touch their Kittens?
No. Cats absolutely do not like anyone touching their kittens, especially if they are not familiar with you. Maternal aggression is also one of their mechanisms to keep you away from their young babies. If you love the kittens, it’s better to wait until they are independent and the mother is ready to leave them. Though, if they need assistance or medical help, the mother is likely to ask for it through her cries to inform you about the situation.
The Bottom Line
To put simply, cats love their kittens, but they leave them after a certain time. Usually, mothers leave their babies after 10 to 16 weeks to survive independently. It is best not to touch or go near the kittens during this period as the mother may sense danger and attack you. Reports also show that kittens who have lived with their mothers for a long time are well behaved and better at socializing. While cats love their kittens, they eventually push them to live on their own.