Once a kitten is weaned from its mother, it’s up to you, as its “new mother”, to feed it. Just like a growing human baby, a kitten needs a proper diet that’s full of vitamins and minerals. Kittens grow at an amazing rate. Plus, they are very energetic. So they need three to four times the vitamins and minerals that an adult cat needs. If you have at least one young feline that’s no longer nursing, you need to find out how to properly feed a weaned kitten.
I recently adopted a small stray kitten that some irresponsible person dumped off at my rural home. (The previous owner also dumped the mother cat off. But, unfortunately, she was hit by a car.) I judged the kitten’s age to be somewhere between six to eight weeks old. She was weaned from her mother, which was a good thing, so I started her off eating WhiskasÃ¢Â?Â¢ moist kitten food and WhiskasÃ¢Â?Â¢ cat milk since that’s what I had on hand. This was after I brought her in the house from a cold rainstorm. The black, short-haired kitten was sopping wet, so I used an old, soft towel to dry her off first. After she was dry and warm, I fed her. She wolfed down the moist food and milk like she was starving to death. Otherwise, the weaned kitten seemed to be in good health. Her blue eyes were clear, bright, and alert, her black fur coat was soft and shiny, and she had a good appetite.
After I made an appointment with my veterinarian for a check-up and vaccinations, I then set up a feeding station for my new little furry dependent. Weaned kittens aren’t like puppies. Puppies tend to gorge themselves, while kittens eat enough to be full, and then they quit eating until they get hungry again. So, you can give a weaned kitten free access to their food without worrying about them eating too much.
Since they are small and short in stature, you should properly feed a weaned kitten by setting down two low dishes, or bowls, on the floor. Sometimes kittens are messy when they eat, so you might want to place a plastic mat or a layer of old newspapers underneath the dishes or bowls. The first bowl will hold your kitten’s food, while the second bowl will contain fresh water. Make sure you place the bowls in a quiet location that’s away from foot traffic and other pets. That way, your weaned kitten can eat in peace and not be scared off by noise. And, keep the food and water bowls in a separate room away from their litter box.
Personally, I have raised a lot of cats, and the main diet I give weaned felines is PurinaÃ¢Â?Â¢ Kitten Chow. Kitten Chow seems to provide enough vitamins, minerals, protein, carbohydrates, calcium, and fats to help a kitten grow into a healthy adult cat. Kitten Chow is also made of smaller pieces that fits a small weaned kitten’s mouth better. It’s also easily digestible.
I put down about a third of a cup of dry Kitten Chow at a time for my kitten to eat. (If your weaned kitten has problems eating dry food at first, add a small amount of warm water to the food and let it soften up first.) Once my kitten eats that amount of dry food, I add more to her bowl so she can eat it at her leisure.
The experts recommend that, in order to properly feed a weaned kitten and provide them with a well-balanced diet, you should feed them dry and moist food. This idea seems to work well. But my experience has been that sometimes moist food is too rich for a kitten’s underdeveloped digestive system. Too much moist food can easily give your kitten an upset tummy or diarrhea. Therefore, I limit feeding my weaned kitten a teaspoon or two of moist food to two times a week.
Note: Store leftover moist kitten food in your refrigerator. Then, about fifteen minutes or so before every feeding time, remove the desired amount of kitten food from the refrigerator. Allow it to reach room temperature before you give it to your weaned kitten.
You’ll need to keep your kitten’s food and water bowls clean at all times. You can wash them with water and a drop or two of dish detergent to accomplish this. Then, rinse them thoroughly with clean tap water and dry them. Then, refill them with fresh water and kitten chow. I wash my weaned kittens bowls every couple days to keep them clean and germ- free.
And, to properly feed a weaned kitten, don’t give it human food. Your kitten may love the smell of the food you’re eating, but they shouldn’t be allowed to have it. Since a young kitten has its “milk” or baby teeth, it can’t chew tough meats and other such foods. Never let your kitten have bones of any type as it can easily choke.
By the time your weaned kitten reaches six months old, they will appear to be full grown. However, they are actually still growing on the inside. Personally, I continue to feed my young felines kitten chow until they are a year old and become a mature adult cat. You may want to consult with your veterinarian as to when he or she recommends switching your weaned kitten over to cat food.