Retained Placenta in Cats
A retained placenta, or retained afterbirth, occurs when the placenta (the sac surrounding an unborn kitten) is not expelled from the mother’s uterus along with the kitten at the time of birth or shortly after.
Symptoms and Types
- Green discharge from vulva that continues
- Fever (in some cases)
- Systemic disease (in some cases)
The placenta is retained in the uterus rather than being expelled with or shortly after the birth of the kitten.
History of a recent birth with a physical examination finding of a green discharge from the vulva is supportive of a diagnosis of retained placenta. Your veterinarian may recommend routine blood testing, though these results may be normal. Vaginal cytology may also be recommended. Your veterinarian may need to take X-rays and/or perform an ultrasound of the uterus. In some cases, exploratory surgery may be necessary.
Oxytocin may be administered in an attempt to expel the retained placenta. If medical treatment with oxytocin is unsuccessful, ovariohysterectomy (spay) may be recommended if your cat is not to be bred again.
The hollow bodily organ that holds the embryo and fetus and provides nourishment; only found in female animals.
The genitalia of a female; found on the outside
To take the ovaries and uterus out of female animals; makes them unable to reproduce.
The organ of mammals that comes while a female is pregnant; may also be referred to as afterbirth
A type of hormone that is released during parturition that aids in the contraction of the uterus and causes milk to be released
Found attached to the fetus while en utero; expelled upon birth of the fetus. Term used to refer to the placenta.
A medical condition in which the mother animal fails to expel the placenta