Hey Pet Parents & Pet Lovers,
Nipples can be a weird subject to talk about, especially when it comes to cats. I actually had a friend take their cat to the emergency because they thought their cat’s nipple was a tumour. So why is it that nipples are so taboo? Is there anything important to know about cat nipples? Absolutely! So, let’s get started!
Do All Cats Have Nipples?
Absolutely! It doesn’t matter if your cat is male or female, just like humans both sexes have nipples! Nipples are believed to develop while the cat is still in the womb even before the cat’s sex is decided. Similar to humans, all cats begin as females and some develop male anatomy over the gesticulation period. A cat “becomes male” due to the testosterone levels and will stop developing certain traits such as mammary glands.
Where Exactly Are My Cat’s Nipples?
Your Cat’s Nipples will be located below their chest and above their pelvis. Dependant on how much fur your cat has you may not be able to see all of their nipples, however dependant on how many nipples your cat has you may be able to see the bottom two located in the “fine fur lining” on the lower belly.
What Do My Cat’s Nipples Feel Like?
Dependant on your cat, your cat’s nipples may feel hard like a pimple. Some of Beau’s nipples are harder than his others, while all of Kalista’s nipples feel like little pimples.
Do All Cats Have the Same Amount of Nipples?
Shockingly, no. Cats can have between 4 to 10 nipples. This is true for both male and female cats and the sex of the cat does not determine the number of nipples your cat may have. So, you may end up with a male cat with 10 nipples and a female cat with 4. The average amount of nipples on a cat is 8.
If Cats Are From the Same Litter, Will They Have the Same Amount of Nipples?
Nope! Just because your cats are from the same litter, doesn’t mean that they are going to end up with the same genetics. Cats may vary in colours, sizes, shapes, personalities and amount of nipples!
My Cat Has An Odd Number Of Nipples, Is Something Wrong?
Funny enough, no! Your cat is completely normal! The number of nipples your cat has is not a factor to the health of your loved one.
My Female Cat’s Nipples Look Weird and Big, What’s Happening?
Your cat may actually be pregnant! Similar to humans, the female feline’s body will prepare itself for the feeding she’s about to be doing. This is common around the 35-day mark and your cat’s nipples will become much more pink as well as much larger. During this time it is recommended that you do not touch your cat’s stomach as her nipples will be fairly sensitive. At this time there are no at home tests for feline pregnancies, however, if you are uncertain or worried about your cat’s health a vet will be able to do some tests to make sure your cat is healthy and truly pregnant.
My Cat is Definitely Pregnant and it Seems Like She’s Leaking Milk… Is Everything Okay?
Again, just like humans sometimes cats overproduce milk, causing them to leak. It is more common for cats to leak milk than not leak milk. It’s actually a great sign, as it means that your cat will have a good supply of milk to provide her kit with.
Does Leaking Milk Mean My Cat Is Going To Give Birth Soon?
No, it does not. Again, similar to humans cats may begin to leak anytime during the pregnancy, however, it is more common for cats to begin leaking closer to their due date.
Is It Healthy For My Cat To Drink Her Own Milk?
It’s not so much that your cat is drinking her own milk as much as it’s your cat trying to make sure that she is kept nice and dry. Similar to you, your cat doesn’t want to stay wet for too long. Milk may also cause your cat’s fur to get sticky or matted, so let them do their thing!
Are There Any Health Risks I Should Check My Cat’s Nipples For?
Unfortunately yes. If your cat is not pregnant or female and has swollen nipples they could potentially have Feline Mammary Hypertrophy, Mammary Cancer, Mammary Hyperplasia and if they were recently pregnant but are no longer lactating they may be experiencing Galactostatis or Mastitis. If you are worried about any of these conditions I would take your cat to the vet immediately.
One of My Cats Likes Their Nipples Scratched and the Other Doesn’t… Why?
It’s all to do with sensitivity. Beau only likes his nipples/belly scratched every so often, while Kalista is always in the mood. It’s completely normal! Some cats may never want their belly or nipples scratched. you’re just out of luck in those cases.
So I’m Curious…
How many nipples do your cats have? Let me know in the comments below!