May 26, 2024
How Do Kittens Get Fed (2)

How Do Kittens Get Fed?


Growth and feeding of the kitten

Breastfeeding your kitten

Kitten feeding: the weaning process

The quality and quantity of meals

The kitten’s diet, like that of a pregnant cat, an older cat, or a neutered cat, must respect certain principles. In particular, kibble must be rich in nutrients so that kittens develop properly.

Kitten growth and feeding

From birth, the kitten’s growth is very rapid:

He gains about 10 to 15 g per day.

It doubles its birth weight in 10 days.

He multiplies his birth weight by 6 in about 7 weeks.

At birth, the kittens start by drinking the first milk (colostrum), which is extremely rich in antibodies and protects them from infectious diseases. It is recommended to weigh them daily at a fixed time to check that their development is going well.

Note: stagnation in the growing weight of the kittens should alert you; in this case, you should consult a veterinarian.

Breastfeeding the kitten

How Do Kittens Get Fed

Each kitten has a favorite teat, and the teats that are not allocated stop producing milk. During the first 48 hours, the cat never leaves her kittens alone: they suckle between 2 and 3 ml of milk every 20 minutes. Then, she encourages them to feed themselves during the first 3 weeks. Over the next few weeks, we see that:

From the 3rd to the 4th week, the kittens suckle their mother: alternatively, they or the cat are at the initiative of the meal.

Then, in the 4th week, the kittens become systematically at the origin of the suckling.

Towards the 5th week, the kittens ask for their mother, but the she-cat begins to move away from her kittens and scold them when they want to suckle. The growth of milk teeth makes suckling more and more painful for her.

Weaning begins gradually and is usually completed between the 6th and 8th week.

Good to know: if the mother doesn’t produce enough milk or is failing, you can give the kittens formula; but never give them cow’s milk because it is too rich in lactose and will make the kittens sick.

Kitten feeding: the weaning process

How Do Kittens Get Fed (2)

The weaning of kittens must be done gradually to avoid causing digestive disorders. For this, it is advisable to proceed as follows:

The best solution is to provide kittens with kibble for 3 weeks. They will be able to familiarize themselves with it gradually.

This way, when the cat starts to push them away around the 5th week, they will be more inclined to make the transition.

As weaning progresses, it is best to separate the kittens from their mother for a few hours a day, then for longer and longer periods. This way, they will have easy access to their food.

Weaning should be completely finished between the 7th and 8th week.

Quality and quantity of food

The kitten food is given when weaning must be very energetic: a kitten consumes three times more energy than an adult. Her needs remain high until 12 weeks of age, then gradually decrease. Here are a few tips on how to respect the quality and quantity of their food:

Kitten food can be given from the beginning of weaning. But so that the kittens don’t have difficulties eating them, it is possible, in the beginning, to wet them with formula milk, meat broth, or water.

The kittens’ bowl must be big enough for all the little ones to have access to it simultaneously.

Finally, giving 30 to 50 g of kibble adapted to kittens in 3 to 5 meals per day is advisable.

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