Cristina Veterinary Clinic - Blog


Before a kitten, when he is less than two months old and his mother cannot feed him, we must react with rap>

Le leche, an indispensable food

If it is urgent, we can give the kitten in distress a bottle of 600 ml of cow's milk mixed with an egg yolk and with 200 gr of cream (cream with 12% fat). If we have goat's milk at home and we have doubts ... it is important to know that always it will be better give the kitty GOAT MILK.

This bottle should NOT be given to kittens that were born less than 24 hours ago.

Why goat's milk?

Goat's milk is the one that most closely matches mother-cat's milk in terms of composition: level of lactose, lipids, proteins, mineral salts, etc. Therefore, if we do not have infant formula for the kitten and we have goat milk at home, rest assured: it will be a good option.

Cow's milk is poor in lipids, proteins and mineral salts and too lactose rich for the kitten. But, remember that for an emergency, we will be great.

As soon as we can, we will buy special milk for kittens, infant formula. It will help you get all the nutrients you need.

There are many great accessories to give milk to our pussy: teats, bottles, pipettes, etc ... much easier and more comfortable than a teaspoon or a straw. With the right elements, with care and love, it's done!

A well nourished kitten

For teats, it is best to carefully follow the instructions on the pack of infant formula for kittens. The shots should be spaced at regular intervals.

It is important to use a bottle and provide the kitten with the doses recommended by the manufacturer of the infant formula.

To feed our pussy ... you don't have to lie on your back like human babies. We must place our kitten in the natural position it would have if it were feeding its mother.

Weaning target

When the kitten is 5 weeks old, we can start presenting solid food. We can alternate small portions of wet food and small croquettes dipped in infant formula, all adapted for kittens.

Let's not forget to always make fresh and clean water available to the kitten. Water is essential even if the kitten continues with the milk.

Why don't they make their needs?

It is important to stimulate the kitten to urinate or defecate. Mama cat licks her kittens to get it, but as we replace her, we must do it.

We will use a gauze or a damp cloth and clean and rub the kitten carefully in the anal or genital area. It is convenient to repeat the operation several times a day.

With some patience the miracle will occur: a healthy and fit kitten. To verify that our kitten has good growth and good development, we can weigh him. In general, kittens weigh between 90 and 100 grams and fat 100 grams approximately a week.

First rule: Maintain an adequate environment.

Orphaned animals should be kept in a clean, warm environment without drafts.

Maintaining the right temperature is of vital importance, because cooling decreases the survival of newborns.

Kittens are not able to generate body heat the first weeks of life, they need an external supply of heat.

During the first week, the ambient temperature should be maintained between 30 and 32 ° C.

From the second week to the fourth, the necessary temperature decreases to be between 26º - 28 ºC

From the fifth week it can be lowered to 21-24 ° C and when the litter reaches 5 - 6 weeks of age they can be maintained at 21 ° C.

To provide heat, an electric mat or an infrared heat lamp can be used. The heat source must be positioned in such a way that the Kittens can move to colder areas, in case the heat is excessive. The heat lamp should be located at a suitable height that does not provide excess heat.

Moisture must also be taken into account, if dry heat is used to keep the cabin warm, containers with water should be placed near the heaters to maintain moisture.

This will ensure that the nasal passages are not resected and that the kittens have no respiratory problems.

The air currents are controlled by a cabin with high walls such as a box, a carrier or a basket.

Second rule: how to feed abandoned kittens.

Feeding abandoned kittens should be done with a milk substitute that has a correct composition. It is important that the formula chosen approximates the composition of the natural milk of the cat.

Cow's milk has a very different composition from the milk of cat, so it can cause diarrhea and digestive disorders and negatively influence the development of puppies.

Commercial milk-replacers formulated for kittens are the best substitute for cat's breast milk.

But even a high quality substitute will not be able to provide newborn colostrum maternal antibodies to newborns.

Therefore, if the newborn loses his mother before receiving colostrum, special attention should be paid to maintaining a clean environment and preventing infectious diseases.

The chances of survival of non-calostrated animals are much lower than those of orphans who had the opportunity to take colostrum.

How much food should be given.

During the first weeks, the amount of milk that each kitten can drink is very limited by the volume of the stomach.

It is very important to monitor the weight of orphaned kittens every day, only then can we ensure that they receive the right amount of food.

It is best to use a kitchen ingredients scale.

If the lacto-replacement is specifically formulated for cats, during the first two weeks between 13-17 ml of reconstituted milk should be given per 100 grams of live weight per day.

This amount will increase to 20-22 ml / 100 gr during the third and fourth weeks.

Amount of milk to use:

1st week: The puppy needs 13 cc of reconstituted milk for every 100 grams of live weight per day.

2nd week: The puppy needs 17 cc of reconstituted milk for every 100 grams of live weight per day.

3rd week: The puppy needs 20 cc of reconstituted milk per 100 grams of live weight daily.

4th week: The puppy needs 22 cc of reconstituted milk for every 100 grams of live weight each day.

The doses indicated above should be divided between 5 doses the first week and 4 doses in the following weeks.

  • Example for a puppy weighing 90 grams at birth:

We have to give it 13cc x 0.9 = 11.7 cc of (Round to 12cc) milk daily. The 12 cc of milk you should drink the day, the div>

Milk for kitten feeding should be prepared at the concentration indicated by the manufacturer.

The total daily volume should be divided equally between the different daily doses. The shots should be administered at regular intervals, so we will allow the kittens to enjoy the necessary hours of sleep without interruptions.

Kittens weigh at birth 90-100 gr and should gain weight between 50-100 grams per week.

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Feeding Methods

To feed abandoned kittens, there are two possible methods: nipple feeding or tube feeding.

It is best to use an eye dropper or a syringe (without needle,) instead of a bottle. Especially the first two weeks.

With the bottle there is a greater risk of having too much milk flow at once, not being able to swallow it all and passing part to the lungs.

If milk passes to the lungs, it will cause infections and severe aspiration pneumonia.

Puppies should be kept in an upright position, with their head slightly tilted forward and up.

If we bottle feed, the kittens will reject it when their stomach is full. However, the appropriate volume of food for each meal should be calculated and measured, as explained above.

If we do this, the risk of overfeeding and aspiration pneumonia is minimized.

The use of a probe is faster and reduces the risk of passing milk to the kitten's lungs. It is particularly interesting when we must feed numerous litters.

However, improper placement or too rapid administration can cause injury to the animal. The use of a probe requires adequate training.

Fresh milk should be prepared every day and heated to 38 ° C before administration.

During the first 2-3 feeding sessions the amount of milk should be somewhat restricted, this allows a gradual adjustment to the lacto-replacement.

If puppies are supercharged the first few days, diarrhea may occur.

After each session and several times a day, a light massage should be done, with a damp cloth, of the anal and genital area of ​​newborns. This action simulates the mother's licks and stimulates the defecation and urination of the kitten.

The grooming, cleaning and feeding of the puppies should be done at regular intervals and the cabin should be cleaned several times a day.

Orphans will show an increase in demand and food tolerance, once they have opened their eyes and remain on their legs.

Weaning of orphaned kittens.

There is nothing more affectionate than a kitten raised with artificial milk. The strong contact with humans in the first weeks of life, conveys a strong imprint, which will make them easily accept human contact.

But the problem is that they become very dependent, so from 3 or 4 weeks we must start changing their eating habits and start the weaning process, as your mother would do naturally.

To wean them you have to combine milk with solid food: a porridge made with reconstituted milk and kitten feed or special canned food for kittens.

Before each take, when they are hungry, we must stimulate them to try the solid food, putting it on a flat plate, gradually we will decrease the amount of milk of each take to force them to eat the milk porridge.

Once the semi-solid food has been introduced, they must have water at all times.

Although there is no fixed rule, kittens can consume normal feed for puppies, without mixing it with milk, between 8 and 10 weeks of age.

We will have finished weaning and the kitten can feed itself. He has a lifetime ahead of him!