Saturday, May 18, 2024
HomeKittenHow To Feed Newborn Kittens Without Mother

How To Feed Newborn Kittens Without Mother

Homemade Replacement For Rabbit Milk

Feeding newborn kittens without mom cat

Cant find a suitable Kitten Milk Replacer for your baby rabbits but need to feed them something urgently?

Instead of feeding them pure goat milk, you can create a homemade formula thats gentle to their stomachs.

Heres a quick step-by-step guide for creating one such recipe.

  • Mix a cup of goat milk with about three tablespoons of powdered goat milk.
  • Add sugar-free heavy whipping cream to make the formula richer.
  • Heat the milk formula to about 100 degrees Fahrenheit.

What Should I Track In A Logbook

Maintaining a logbook about the orphaned kittens does not need to be complicated. The reason for the logbook is to simply keep track of how the kittens are doing so you can identify if there are any potential concerns with their development.

Tracking their weights, milestones, and routines are key, so be sure to record details of when their eyes open, when their teeth begin to erupt, their food intake, and stool consistency.

Individual kittens must be identified in some way, so consider colored collars or nail polish on a few front toenails.

What To Avoid Feeding Baby Rabbits Without A Mother

Rabbits are very sensitive to diet changes. Before you introduce them to any food, ensure that its something you can keep feeding them for months to come.

There are also some types of foods that can be dangerous when given in excessive quantity.

Always be careful of the ingredients youre feeding your baby rabbit as it can affect its growth.

Read Also: How To Travel Long Distance With A Cat

What To Feed Baby Rabbits Without A Mother

A rabbits diet is important for many reasons.

It affects its digestion process, helps grind down and maintain its teeth, and of course, it plays a part in making sure that your rabbit grows up healthy!

When youre taking care of a domesticated baby rabbit without a mother, you can substitute milk with formulas like Kitten Milk Replacer to feed it.

If you cant find a formula that contains sufficient calories for a rabbit, you can opt for pure goat milk to feed the baby bun.

Additionally, you can also utilize special equipment like syringes or droppers to control the rabbits milk intake.

However, always make sure to sterilize everything before carrying out this practice.

Sometimes wild rabbits leave their nests in plain sight.

If you notice a kitten of bunnies struggling to survive due to lack of food, you may feel like you have to act promptly and become their knight in shining armor.

However, this urge can lead to many irreversible consequences.

  • If a rabbit mother sees a disturbed nest, it may abandon the babies.
  • Wild baby rabbits can die from sudden touches as they sense it as a danger and get anxious.
  • You can get serious diseases and infections.

Kittens Need To Be Taught How To Clean And Groom Themselves

How to Bottle Feed a Kitten

Only recently did I begin seeing Pepper groom himself at random times, but Ive not been able to capture it on camera yet. And yes, its just as adorable as you would imagine.

Otherwise, the cleaning up is left to me, and I use gentle pet wipes on his face after feeding, and on his bottom after he pees or poops. Apparently, if you dont clean a kitten up well, it can get rashes around its mouth or something called urine or fecal scalding on its bottom and legs.

To comfort a kitten, you can use a clean toothbrush to gently comb their head and body to mimic a mother cats grooming, which also teaches them the habit as they grow.

Read Also: How Do You Litter Train A Kitten

How Often Should A Kitten Eat

The frequency that your kitten eats normally depends on how old they are:

  • Up to 1 week old: every 2-3 hours
  • 2 weeks old: every 3-4 hours
  • 3 weeks old: every 4-6 hours.
  • 6 weeks old: three or more feedings of canned food spaced out evenly throughout the day
  • 12 weeks old: three feedings of canned food spaced out evenly throughout the day

If you have questions or need additional guidance about how often or what kind of food to give to your kitten, contact your veterinarian for help.

How To Feed Neonatal Kittens

Use kitten bottles, and try to get the elongated nipples if theyre available because they are easier to use. You may have to make your own holes in the nipple with a sterilized pin or razor be sure you do this correctly so that the KMR drips out slowly when the bottle is turned upside down.

If you notice the kitten is having a hard time getting the milk to come out of the bottle, the pinhole on the nipple may need to be larger alternately, if the kitten is having a hard time keeping up with the amount of milk coming out, consider changing the nipple to one with a smaller hole. And cleanliness is key, so sterilize the bottles and wash your hands before and after each feeding.

Hold or place kittens on their stomachs and tilt the bottle so less air gets in. Do not feed kittens on their backs. Always warm the KRM and test it on your wrist to be sure it is warm but not hot, like you would do with an infant.

Remember, do not feed chilled kittens. Follow the guidelines on the formula label for how much to use, but they will usually stop eating when theyre full.

Don’t Miss: Why Do Cats Make A Chirping Sound

How To Wean Kittens

To begin weaning a kitten, mix the kitten food with formula so they recognize the taste. Smear the mixture around their mouth with your finger and let them lick it off. Once they get used to the taste, theyll seek it out elsewhere. Then you can introduce them to lapping from a bowl. Monitor them so they dont lap too fast, and never push their face into the bowl, which could cause them to inhale the mixture and develop pneumonia.

Between the fourth and sixth week, gradually transition the weaning kittens to dry food, supplementing with formula if needed. Use canned food or dry kitten food mixed with water at first, add a lot of water, and then reduce the amount of water as the kitten matures.

A general schedule for kitten weaning might be:

  • Weeks 4-5: Give wet or moistened dry food, mixed with formula to form a slush. Supplement with formula if the kitten is not taking to the new food, to make sure it gets enough calories.
  • Weeks 5-6: The weaning kittens should start to nibble on the kibble, slightly moistened with water.
  • Weeks 6-7: By now, the kitten weaning process is complete, and they should be eating all solid food by week seven.

You May Like: What To Get For Newborn Baby Gift

Other Kitten Weaning Tips

How to Feed a Baby Kitten Without a Mother – Feeding the Kitten Properly

When you are weaning a kitten onto solid food, its important to use a food formulated specifically for kittens. These formulas have the higher levels of calories, protein and calcium that growing kittens need. If you are caring for a mother cat and her litter, its okay for the mom cat to eat the same kitten food while shes nursing.

Weaning kittens must be kept warm. Build a nest by lining a high sided box or pet carrier with towels. Benson also recommends adding a layer of diapers above the towels, cutting the leg holes to make them lie flat. Theyre going to get messy, he says, and this makes clean-up much easier. Place a heating pad or hot water bottle under the towels on one half of the box. This gives the kittens plenty of heat, but also a place to cool off if they are too hot.

Kitten weaning is a natural process they may just need a little help from you. The key: a little patience and a lot of love.

Also Check: Siberian Kittens For Sale Los Angeles

How To Clean A Newborn Kitten

If you have rescued the little one and found fleas on it, Dont try any chemical/medicines at all. You can remove all the fleas manually. Or dip a towel in hot water and clean the baby with a towel.

Furthermore, kittens under three weeks, cant clean themselves. Such as they can potty or pee anytime, anywhere. A big box, with a towel layer, is recommended, so you can change the sheet 3-4 times a day . Usually, mother cat takes care of kittens in this period and clean them by licking the potty area after each time they make dirt. Human simulation of this action can be using wet tissues, baby wipes or moistened towel to clean them softly.

You can start kittens training for using the litter box by fourth or fifth week.

Choosing The Best Kitten Food

When it comes to kitten food, quality counts. Choose only food that has been certified by Association of American Feed Control Officials , which establishes nutritional standards for complete and balanced pet foods. This means that the food has been tested to make sure it is properly balanced for your kittens growing needs. If youve adopted a kitten from a shelter, find out what the kitten was eating previously and stick with that diet to avoid stomach upset.

Read Also: When Is It Time To Say Goodbye To Your Cat

How Often Do You Feed Newborn Kittens

Neonatal kittens need to be fed on a regular basis day and night. For the first week of life, they need to be fed about every two to three hours. After that, you can usually stretch it out to every four hours.

These kittens should be bottle-fed using kitten milk replacer , which comes in either liquid or powder form. Its the equivalent to formula that you would use for a bottle-fed baby, except its formulated for cats. The formula, bottles and nipples are all available over the counter at most pet supply stores. You dont need a prescription. The instructions will give you a guideline on how much to feed based on the weight of the cat.

When preparing the bottle, be cautious of milk flow. If you make the hole in the nipple too big, the kitten can actually aspirate, or drown. The bottles come with instructions on how to prep the nipple for milk flow. However, if you are struggling, I would advise you to seek help from your veterinarian. Never cut off the entire tip of the nipple, as this is often what causes cats to aspirate.

Weeks Seven And Eight Feeding Schedules

How to Feed a Baby Kitten Without a Mother: 15 Steps

Limited nursing sessions should still be allowed until the kittens are two months old, assuming they are all eating the kitten food that is offered to them three times a day. The mother cat may need to be separated from kittens that are relentlessly trying to nurse more than they should, but by the end of week eight, a kitten should weigh about two pounds from the combination of limited nursing and eating regular kitten food.

The Spruce / Emilie Dunphy

Recommended Reading: Kittens For Adoption In Mn

How To Hold A Newborn Kitten

When lifting up a newborn kitten, use both your hands. Hold them from the chest and under their back legs to make sure they are fully supported. Be gentle. If they squirm, do not put them down this teaches them that squirming means they will be released. Instead, soothe them with your voice until they calm down.

In this article, we have explored the essentials of caring for a newborn kitten. With this advice and professional help from your vet, your kitten should grow up to be strong, loving and well-socialised cat.

Next, find out more about kitten vaccinations and how they work to keep your pet protected from a wide range of diseases.

How Often Should Kittens Be Weighed And How Much Should They Weigh

The birth weight of each kitten should be recorded, and weight should be taken every day or two for the first four weeks of life. Starting in their fifth week, you can switch to weekly weigh-ins. A digital food scale with capacity up to 5 pounds works best for these measurements.

Kittens normally weigh between 80 to 120 grams at birth. They gain about 100g/week during their first six months of life and should average at least 7g per day.

Also Check: Do Cats Miss Their Owners When Rehomed

What Hygiene Precautions Do I Need To Take With The Utensils

Hygiene is of the utmost importance, both in terms of all the kittens feeding and measuring equipment and the carers personal hygiene in preparing feeds and toileting kittens. Orphaned kittens are very prone to infections so they must always be kept clean, and utensils used for preparing or administering the milk must be sterile.

Signs Of Malnutrition In A Newborn Kitten

How to Care for Kittens without Mom ?| How to Feed a Newborn Kitten?

A kitten in good health will between breastfeeding sessions and will wake up when their mother encourages them to so, when they start to scream and actively seeks the teat.

When meals are not enough cats wake more frequently and moan. They progressively become inactive and do not gain enough weight. The most frequent complications from malnutrition are diarrhea, dehydration, hypoglycemia, and hypothermia.

Any kitten that is under-fed or rejected by their mother must be assisted quickly.

You May Like: Stella & Chewy’s Freeze-dried Raw Cat Food

How To Feed A Newborn Kitten

This article was co-authored by Natalie Punt, DVM. Dr. Natalie Punt is a Veterinarian and the Founder and CEO of mPet. She specializes in small animal emergency and general medicine and veterinary practice economics. Dr. Punt holds a BS in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from The University of California, Davis, an MS in Biochemistry from The University at Buffalo, and a DVM from Western University of Health Sciences.There are 7 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page.wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. This article has 14 testimonials from our readers, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 888,988 times.

Ideally, kittens should stay near and nurse from their mother cat for up to eight weeks prior to being separated and/or adopted. In the case of a rescue, death of the natural mother, or when circumstances cause cat mothers to reject one or more of her litter, human intervention is necessary. There are many things to consider if you find yourself needing to feed a newborn kitten. Careful consideration and preparation will make bottle feeding a kitten a soothing and comfortable experience, and help result in a happy, healthy pet.

Tips For Safely Bottle

  • The kitten should lay on its belly with its legs comfortably splayed out. Avoid placing the kitten on its side or back during feeding as this puts your kitten at risk. By laying on their belly, your kitten is automatically placed in a natural nursing position that is safe for them.
  • Keep the kitten warm before feeding so that they can digest the milk replacement at a natural rate. You do not want to overheat them, but rather provide a heating source that replicates their mothers body heat.
  • Keep a journal or digital copy of the feeding schedule so that you can monitor how much formula you are feeding the kitten. It may also be a good idea to set alarms so that you can determine when the next feeding should be.
  • Prepare the formula in advance so that you do not accidentally rush and miss a step during the process. Your kitten relies on this formula for its health and vitality, so care should be taken when preparing the formula.
  • Care for the kitten after feeding. They will feel tired and sleep, so keep them warm and protected. If you only have one kitten, use a rolled-up blanket or plush toy to provide them with some social companionship. Kittens feel better when they are huddled together, and this also keeps them comfortable.

Read Also: Best Wet Food For Cats With Ibd

Should I Take In An Abandoned Kitten

Access the situation to determine if the kittens are truly orphaned before removing them from the street

If you come across a kitten or 2 or 4 on the street, do not assume the kitten are orphaned. It is common for the mother to leave the kittens alone as she scavenges for food or when she is in the process of moving them to a new place.

Access the situation to determine if they are truly orphaned. To do this, give the kittens distance and observe.

Stand as far away from the kittens as possible . The mother will not approach the kittens if she senses the presence of humans.

You may need to leave before the mother cat comes back. Evaluate if the kittens are in immediate danger. Are the kittens in an area with a lot of traffic? Is it raining or snowing? Are there dogs or wild animals that might harm the kittens? Are there kids in the neighborhood who could harm the kittens?

Rescue the kittens only if they are in immediate danger. If not, note that the mother may take several hours before she returns. Watch out for the kittens for as long as you can at a safe distance before removing them.

Should Kittens Be Weighed Regularly

How to Feed a Baby Kitten Without a Mother

It is advisable to monitor the kittens growth rates by weighing them regularly. It is best to weigh the kittens daily at the same time, as in all cases daily increments will vary from kitten to kitten. It is good practice to keep daily records. They should double their birth weight in the first 7 to 10 days, then continue to gain weight steadily.

You May Like: How Fast Do Kittens Grow


Most Popular