Cats/Cat changing personality after giving birth
My cat gave birth about 6 months ago to 5 lovely kittens, 3 of which we still own. Before the pregnancy and even after the kittens were born, she was a very social, very loving lap cat. About two to three months after having the kittens she turned into a skittish cat that hides under the bed all day, and runs away from humans. We've done nothing to harm her or the kittens, and we're not sure what to do. We'd like to help her know that she's loved, but we're not sure where to start.
when a cats behavior changes then we know for certain that something else has changed to cause this reaction. It could be a health issue or a environmental issue. So it is best to look at all possibilities and try and eliminate them as possible causes. firstly i would take her for a quick check over at the vets so that any medical condition can be ruled out. Sometimes a skin condition can make a cat skittish (my own cat went through a period of running around like a mad thing and hiding under tables and we discovered she had a skin allergy that was driving her crazy).
If the vet give the all clear then it has to be something in the cats environment that has changed. In your case there are now three other cats living in the house and regardless of the fact that they are her own kittens they will be seen as rivals.
It is important that the kittens are spayed or neutered otherwise you will have cat fights and urine troubles galore as they all fight to be top cat. If they are not spayed yet it could be their scent which has upset your female cat and she has become a little unsure of her place in the home and may feel that she has to keep out of the way.
Her behavior towards you probably has nothing to do with how she feels towards you, she is simply reacting to the new circumstances in the home. Hopefully once all the cats are spayed and she is given time and her own space she may get over her insecurities and return to her former behavior. Keep reassuring her and spending time with her, make sure all the cats have their own litter trays and feeding and sleeping areas. Hopefully things will settle down soon.