Cat Health: What's Considered Normal?

Know Normals for Temperature, Respiration, Heart Rate and Pregnancy in Cats

What is a "normal" heart rate for your cat? How long are cats pregnant for? Does a body temperature of 102.5°F mean that your cat has a fever?

Being familiar with what is normal and what is not helps you identify health problems for your cat quicker. Seeing your veterinarian at the first signs of your cat's illness is often less expensive and with a more favorable outcome.

Please note: This article has been provided for informational purposes only. If your pet is showing any signs of illness, please consult a veterinarian as quickly as possible.

  • 01 of 05

    Body Temperature

    Pretty gray cat with green eyes in home
    Purple Collar Pet Photography/Moment/Getty Images

    Feline "normal" body temperature range is 100.5 - 102.5 Fahrenheit (38 - 39.2 Celsius).

    A body temperature below 100 or above 103F warrants a call to your veterinarian. Cats may become stressed in the veterinary office (or car ride to the office), creating a higher-than-normal body temperature temporarily.

    Gauging body temperature by the moistness of the nose is not reliable. Sometimes a fever can be noticed by how warm the ears feel, but this is also not a reliable method.

  • 02 of 05

    Respiratory Rate

    Sleeping cat by a window
    Marser / Getty Images

    16 - 40 breaths per minute

    Respiratory rate is the number of breaths per minute. Normal respiratory rates are assessed when the cat is resting.

    A cat that is in pain, having heart or respiratory problems, suffering from heatstroke, or stressed will usually have increased respiratory rates.

    It is important to gauge the overall situation and condition of the animal to assess the respiratory rate.

    More about the cat respiratory system:

  • 03 of 05

    Heart Rate

    Two cats relaxing on a green cushion
    Akimasa Harada / Getty Images

    120-140 beats per minute

    When stressed, heart rates will increase. This will normalize as the cat calms down in healthy animals. Cats that suffer from heart conditions (cardiomyopathy) or diseases such as hyperthyroidism will have increased heart rates -- over 200 beats per minute in some cases.

    More cat heart health:

  • 04 of 05

    Duration of Pregnancy

    A pregnant cat sleeping
    " really pregnant cat" ( CC BY-SA 2.0) by  rkimpeljr

    On average, feline pregnancy lasts 63 days but can vary from 57 to 69 days.

    Learn more about cat pregnancy:

    Continue to 5 of 5 below.
  • 05 of 05

    Number of Teeth

    Young red cat shows his teeth
    Jean-Philippe Tournut / Getty Images

    Kittens have 26 teeth
    Adult cats have 30 teeth

    Kittens usually lose their deciduous (baby) teeth by 6 months of age, which are replaced by the adult teeth.

    Learn more about teeth:


Merck Veterinary Manual, 9th edition