When do I start feeding my kittens real cat food?

I have a cat. And she had 5 baby kittens. The are 5 weeks old and I’m not quit sure when to start feeding them dry cat food. I don’t have kitten formula I just have wet cat food in the can. Can I start mixing dry kitten food and the wet food together or do i do something else?

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8 Responses to When do I start feeding my kittens real cat food?

  1. Kailey says:

    Ok so my Cat has had two litters and I got her as a month and a half year old so I had to bottle feed her. She has had 5 kittens in each litter. Anyway, If they are a month old start feeding them wet food. Put it by them, as in around wherever their "nest" is. After they have started eating the wet food, put little bits of dry food in it. Add more everyday.After about a week or so put a bowl of just solid food for them to eat. Hope I helped! :)

    P.S. Hope that the newborns are well.

  2. KMcG says:

    My experience has been that they will start eating with the mother when they are ready. She will usually bring them to the food when she is ready to wean them. Put a kitchen rug under the food dish, they are messy eaters. And will just walk right through the food.

  3. Ocimom says:

    You can start offering CANNED kitten food now. Mix it with KMR and warm water to a thick soup and serve on a plate. You may need to take each kitten and put some food on your fingers to get them to lick it off or gently push a little in their mouths.

    Dry kitten food can be left on the side to nibble on but the main meals should be canned kitten food in chicken or lamb. Beef can be added later. Do NOT feed the kittens fish.

  4. Connie S says:

    if you have a mother cat (and it sounds like you do) you don’t have to do anything. She will show them what is acceptable and what isn’t. Actually they will more likely learn by watching her.

    Canned food is much easier for them to eat and technically it is much healthier for them (see http://www.catinfo.org as to why, it is run by a vet who actually studies feline nutrition) Do not mix wet and dry. There is usually a high bacterial load on dry food, that is fine as long as it isn’t allowed to multiply, which is what happens when it gets wet and sits around.

    generally kittens start to wean around five weeks, but are not able to eat enough on their own until six to eight weeks. Kittens should stay with their litter mates until 10-12 weeks for optimal health both mental and physical. Kittens taken too early are not very well socialized and tend not to make as good of a pet as kittens that stay with their litter mates longer.

  5. E-Fox says:

    You don’t need to give the kittens kitten formula or dry food. What they need is highly nutritious food, no matter if kitten or adult. I”d choose high wuality adult food over crappy kitten formulas any day.

    I wouldn‘t really recommend feeding any dry food. Cats are designed to get their water from food. That’s the way nature designed them, they have low thirst drive. When fed dry, they won’t drink enough to compensate for the lack of moisture. They will only consume about 50% of the water they should be having. This can lead to kidney disease, UTI, crystals, blockage, renal failure and more.

    Free feeding also contributes to obesity. And the fact that dry food is over-processed means, that most of it’s little nutrition has been already destroyed, leaving almost no nutrients for your cat. It needs to eat more to meet it’s needs, and in the process consumes more calories from the fillers.

    Btw wetting the dry food will not help. There’s bacteria on the kibble and the water would just allow it to grow.

    The only way to give the cat it’s natural hydration is to feed it wet food only.

    But some wet foods are not of a very high quality, either. That goes for most commercial foods. Just like the dry, they are often made with cheap fillers such as corn, wheat, soy, rice etc. These are not a part of cat’s natural diet (it’s an obligate carnivore – it eats meat) and they are not designed to digest it. Grain is carbohydrate which the cats can’t process and it turns into blood sugar and fat, causing diabetes and obesity. In the wild, where cats only hunt for meat, diabetes and obesity are unheard of. It’s us who cause these by feeding a species inappropriate food.

    We usually read labels on our food, but rarely on the food for our cats. Learn to read the label and understand the ingredients. The healthiest food to feed apart from raw feeding is grain-free wet food with no by-product. Some good brands are Wellness CORE, EVO, Merrick, Nature’s Variety, Blue Buffalo Wilderness and more. These will give your cat the proper hydration and nutrition it’s designed to get and it will be strong and healthy.

    If you switch it’s diet, do it gradually, by mixing the current food with the new one over couple of weeks until there’s only the new. This will prevent diarrhea and upset stomach.

    You will probably get a lot of different answers, so google feline nutrition or look at the links below, and do the research for yourself. I personally wasn’t able to find one reliable source (besides the pet food industry) that would say grain is beneficial for cats or that dry is beneficial for them.

    More on cat nutrition below,

    Good luck!

  6. analyst1303 says:

    Usually they’d walk over to the mom’s bowl and try to munch. If mom thought they were too young, she’d hiss.

    We used kitten food with a bit of water to make a but of a mush. don’t leave it down a long time. You don’t need a lot of food, just a few pieces at a time.

  7. Danaë says:

    When they are getting their second teeth is probably the best time as they will have learnt how to drink water properly by then. Cat food is not adequate for a nursing mum or her kittens. You should be feeding mum kitten food atleast four times a day until kittens are fully weaned and kittens should be on kitten food up until a year old.

  8. CAT LADY says:

    Best Answer – Chosen by Voters
    Take the kitten to a veterinarian to make sure no medical intervention is needed. Whether the baby kitten was abandoned, or the mother died, it is imperative that you get the kitten to a doctor so that it can be examined for problems such as dehydration. If the veterinarian approves, take the kitten home.

    2
    Set up a bed for the kitten using a cardboard box, old towels and a heating pad. Wrap the heating pad in a towel or two and place it in the bottom of a cardboard box. Bunch up another towel or rag, and place it in a corner for a bed. You may also want to consider putting a stuffed animal in the box for the kitten to cuddle with, as they are used to being close to other kittens or their mother. Place the heating pad on low, as newborn kittens are not able to regulate their temperature until around 8 weeks of age.

    3
    Feed the baby kitten using a small bottle designed to feed orphaned kittens, and some kitten formula or replacement milk. These can be found at any pet store and also at stores like Wal-Mart. Sterilize the bottle, and then fill it with the replacement milk. The instructions on the back of the can will tell you how much to feed a kitten of a certain age, and no mixing or adding of water is needed. If the kitten refuses to drink out of the bottle, you can use an eye dropper to slowly drip the milk into the kitten’s mouth.

    4
    Stimulate the kitten so that it urinates and defecates. To do this, you will need to wet a washcloth or soft towels with warm water, and slowly stroke it over the genital and anal areas of the kitten. After a few strokes the kitten should have defecated. It may take a few feedings to notice any urination. You are stimulating the kitten to substitute the mother kitten’s act of licking these areas with her rough tongue. If you do not perform this act after each meal, the kitten will not be able to excrete. You can stop this process once you notice the kitten using the restroom by itself.

    5
    Show the kitten plenty of love and affection. Kittens normally interact several times a say with their mother and siblings, and you will have to take the place of them. Let the kitten sleep on your lap, or gently pet it. Be careful not to over stimulate the kitten though, and let him sleep in the heated cardboard box as often as he needs.

    6
    Wash the kitten with a damp warm washcloth. Gently stroke the kitten over its back and neck with the washcloth. This will teach the kitten the art of licking and cleaning itself. This is another job that is normally done by the mother cat, which now must be done by you to teach the kitten the essential skills.

    7
    Give the kitten a bath in dawn dish soap or other mild soap if needed. Sometimes the kitten will become dirty, and a bath will be necessary. Do not over wash however, and do not use harsh flea soaps at this early stage in life.

    8
    Start introducing solid foods to the kitten at 6 weeks of age. Begin by soaking some dry kitten food in the replacement milk or formula until it softens. Place the softened food into a shallow bowl, and offer it to the kitten. You may need to do this several times before the kitten gets the hang of eating on its own. You can then gradually feed just dry food once the kitten is old enough to chew the food. You can also start introducing plain water in a shallow dish at this time.

    9
    Start to litter train the kitten at 8 weeks of age. Place the kitten into the litter box filled with litter after every meal, and whenever you notice it trying to eliminate in its box or around the home. Litter training should be a fairly quick process, as it is a natural instinct for most cats.

    10
    Take your kitten into the veterinarian at the age of 8 weeks so that it can receive another check up and its first shots. Follow any additional instructions given by the doctor. At this point your kitten should be thriving on its own, and your work as a mother cat should be just about over.
    .

    Read more: How to Hand Raise a Kitten | eHow.com http://www.ehow.com/how_4465243_hand-rai

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