Step 5: The placenta

The placenta is usually delivered right after the kitten. The kitten is attached to the placenta by its umbilical cord. You should begin the process of rubbing the kitten as soon as possible, even if the placenta is still inside her mom.

Some websites recommended breaking the umbilical cord immediately after the kitten is born, while the placenta is still inside the mom cat. I would highly recommend against this because the kitten's blood flows between the placenta and the kitten. Cutting or breaking the cord too early can result in excessive bleeding and may harm the kitten. It is best to care for the kitten with the placenta still attached.

In nature the cat will eat her kitten's placentas. You can let your cat do this if you want. Reyka only ate the first placenta and left the others. I don't really blame her.

For any placentas that your cat doesn't eat, you will want to eventually remove them. Blood flowing through the umbilical cord is bluish in color and is fairly obvious. Soon after the kitten is born, the blood should stop flowing through the placenta and the umbilical cord will turn white. At this point you can simply cut the umbilical cord about 1.5 inches from the kitten's belly and throw away the placenta.

If the placenta really grosses you out and you want to remove it sooner, tie the umbilical cord with the thread or dental floss about 1.5 inches from the kitten's belly. Then, using your thumb and forefinger, pinch and rub the cord until it breaks (this helps cut off the flow of blood).

Cutting the umbilical cord and removing the placenta should only be done when the kitten is breathing or mewing regularly and is in stable condition.

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