How to properly feed a kitten at 1 month
without a mom at home
Feeding a kitten at the age of one month is a serious and responsible business. It is imperative to take into account the fact that these rules differ from feeding kittens of different ages, even a two-month-old kitten. It is this first month of lack of breast milk that largely determines the future health of an adult cat.
So, a new pet has appeared in your family – it is small, fluffy, and completely defenseless. You are the whole world for him! And it depends on you how he grows up – healthy or sick, affectionate or angry, cheerful or phlegmatic. Your cat, which is still a soft newborn lump, cannot take care of itself. Treat your little family member with warmth and he will surely return you with sincere love in the future! The first step to a long and happy life is proper nutrition, and only you can provide it.
The kitten’s digestive system is still imperfect and is not able to perceive food for an adult cat. Mother’s milk is the best option for feeding at the age of a newborn. In addition, the mother cat provides the baby with psychological comfort and instills the basics of life. Up to 12 weeks of age, the presence of the mother next to the kitten is necessary. In situations where you need to feed the baby yourself, you have to act carefully so as not to harm the baby.
Weaning a cat
It is not recommended to take the kitten away from the mother before one and a half months, because the baby’s immunity is too weak, and the habits are not formed. You need to do this smoothly and methodically – day after day, accustoming your pet to the absence of a mother by his side. In the new habitat, conditions should be created for the calmness of the kitten – a bed, a tray for natural needs with a special filler for kittens, a bowl for food, clean drinking water.
It is more difficult for individuals whose contact with a cat is interrupted suddenly, for various reasons. Adapting to a new home will take longer, but don’t be alarmed: sooner or later your kitten will get used to the changes.
The diet of a one-month-old baby is dominated by liquid or semi-liquid food, which is similar in consistency to mother’s milk. Very young kittens are fed with an adapted formula, which is a substitute for natural milk. The optimal composition of mixtures containing all vitamins and microelements is produced by Beaphar, Gimpet, and Royal. In addition, you will need a teat, measuring cup, and container. The powder is diluted in accordance with the instructions on the package.
The use of the ready-made formula for children is allowed in extreme cases – in the absence of specialized food for kittens. Infant formula of category 0 – 6 months is diluted with water one and a half times more than the indicated dosage. As a last resort, cow’s milk is useful – boiled, chilled, and mixed with egg yolk.
The kitten is fed with food warmed to a comfortable temperature using a syringe without a needle, pipette, or nipple. You can accustom your baby to independence now – by letting him lick his finger with milk or by dropping his muzzle into a bowl. Gradually, having become interested in food, the pet will begin to eat itself.
The principles of proper feeding at home
At 5 weeks of age, a kitten’s stomach is about the size of a thimble, so it should be fed often, but little by little. Ideal – 5 – 6 times throughout the day at intervals of 4 hours.
Night feedings are being phased out. The crumb can eat no more than two teaspoons of food at one time, and the daily food intake should not exceed 120 ml.
It is easy to identify a full kitten with a rounded tummy and milk bubbles near the mouth. In addition, a well-fed pet falls asleep immediately after feeding. Poor sleep, shaking, and lethargic behavior are considered signs of malnutrition. Have you seen these symptoms? Adjust your nutrition urgently!
To enrich the diet, new products are gradually being introduced that are allowed at this age:
goat milk (diluted 1: 1 with boiled water);
liquid semolina or rice porridge (crushed);
soup without added salt (with lean boiled meat) – once a week;
mashed low-fat cottage cheese with boiled yolk – 2 times throughout the week;
minced meat (excluding pork);
fish fillets without bones and salt;
dairy products without sugar.
Offer new food gradually – at intervals of 3 days. This way you can monitor the body’s response to changes in the diet. If vomiting, diarrhea, or allergies occur, complementary foods are stopped. Do not hope that it will “get used to it over time.” This is deadly! Errors in nutrition at such a young age can be fatal for the crumbs.
For your information! An attentive owner will always notice the pet’s reaction to the innovation. Having offered a new product on the finger, the kitten will either happily eat the treat or turn away indifferently. You do not need to insist, because food should be a joy!
Offer complementary foods at the very bottom of the bowl so that the baby does not accidentally fall into it, trying to taste the tasty treat.
For the health of the pet, you need to completely remove smoked meats, fatty and fresh meat, salt, pork, and sugar from the diet.
Clean water should be available at all times. It is better if there are several bowls located in different corners of the apartment.
Spiders for kittens
Natural cat milk has unique characteristics. It is rich in proteins with relatively low-fat content. Not every industrial mixture can serve as an analog of such feeding.
When choosing a ready-made feed, the owner should pay attention not to the bright packaging and advertising promises of the manufacturer, but to the optimal composition and the absence of harmful substances.
Seeing the cost of a ready-made mixture for kittens, you can get confused. Remember, premium food cannot be cheap! A more economical option is not safe for the crumbs. However, do not despair. The volume of the mixture that the pet can eat is small, so one pack of food will last for a long time.
It is not difficult to prepare food, it is enough to dilute the powder mixed with water, after which it becomes usable. At the age of 1 month, breast milk substitutes are the main source of nutrition, and when the kitten reaches 4 weeks, a gradual introduction of complementary foods is necessary.
Many manufacturers offer ready-to-eat foods for babies, the most famous of them being Purina, Royal Canin, Nutri-Vet, Canina, and Beaphar.
The desire to accustom the kitten to natural feeding is understandable – this way you can always be sure of the quality of the product and its benefits for the body. The only thing you shouldn’t do is mix industrial and natural feed. The fact is that from birth, the pet’s body produces the necessary enzymes for digestion, taking into account the food consumed. Mixed food has a negative effect on the fragile digestive system and weakens the immune system.
Decided to stick to natural feeding? It is right! By accustoming your baby to diversity from childhood, you can raise an omnivorous cat and not a capricious stubborn one. The main rule is to exclude food from the master’s table in the diet. Firstly, it is too salty and spicy, and secondly, it is absolutely not suitable for the cat’s diet.
The list of allowed dishes for a month-old kitten is quite large:
liquid porridge with milk or a weak broth made from buckwheat, rice or millet;
boiled fish, deboned;
boiled low-fat meat pate;
A warning! The belief that fish is extremely beneficial for cats of all ages is wrong. It has been proven that frequent consumption of fish dishes leads to kidney inflammation. If in the future it is planned to castrate the cat, then it is better to completely exclude the fish from the menu.
Milk and fermented milk products
Thermostatic fermented baked milk
The kitten’s skeletal system is constantly being formed. Therefore, the calcium contained in milk is essential.
Before use, milk is boiled, a little honey is added to enrich the composition, and cooled to a warm state. 8% cream is no less useful, you can pamper the crumbs with fermented baked milk, goat’s milk, or sugar-free yogurt.
Each new product is introduced gradually, taking into account the reaction of the body.
Are substitutes needed
Milk substitutes do not always benefit a growing body. Kittens with congenital diseases may not survive without maternal nutrition and colostrum. For such pets, the diet is recommended by a veterinarian.
It is not easy to find a suitable milk substitute; it should be as close as possible in composition to mother’s milk. In addition to essential nutrients, quality mixtures should contain:
vitamin supplements and minerals;
Look on the packaging for an indication of which age group the mixture is intended for.
Vitamins and feeding
What else is missing for the full development of the pet? Raising a healthy, active cat with a good appetite and a silky coat requires vitamins and minerals.
When choosing a drug in a veterinary pharmacy, it is better to first consult a doctor. He will tell you the name of the remedy and possible contraindications.
A warning! The components in drugs may overlap, which leads to hypervitaminosis (an excess of vitamins in the body). It is not difficult to avoid this by examining the composition of the package.
The most popular supplement for kittens 1 – 1.5 months is fish oil. The liquid from the capsule can be mixed with food, feeding the pet 2 times a week.
From natural products, kittens will be happy to try fresh herbs (combined with cottage cheese), apples (mashed to a state of puree), cucumbers. The frequency of feeding is the same – no more than 2 times over 7 days. The diet is limited to bran, up to at least 4 months of age.
Ceramic bowl with canned food
Is canned food allowed?
A business person who is rarely at home has a sore lack of time to buy natural products and, moreover, to prepare food on a daily basis.
The solution is to use canned kitten food. At the age of up to a month, it should be a paste or mousse, after a month – canned food in the form of pieces.
In premium feeds, the composition is selected taking into account the requirements of the baby in vitamins and minerals, so pharmacy supplements may not be needed.
When offering canned food to a kitten, you need to be sure that he knows how to drink water on his own. With the transition to the industrial type of feeding, the need for liquid increases. Of course, water is less tasty than milk, and your pet may refuse to drink it. In this case, the water can be replaced with the usual milk mixture or sweetened a little.
Is it possible for human baby food?
The mention of newborn kittens always brings a smile. These babies seem to be just like babies – why not save on cat food and get some regular infant formula? Is this allowed? Let’s try to figure it out.
Your pet is an individual with its own characteristics of health, character, level of activity. The nutritional requirements of kittens and newborn babies differ significantly, although it is not uncommon for baby food to become the life-saving straw in the artificial feeding of a kitten.
Infant formula can be used in three ways:
For watering kittens – suckers left without a mother ahead of time. In this case, the powder is brought to the desired consistency with water in a ratio of 1: 1.5.
In case of an allergic reaction to cat food or congenital diseases in the pet.
As a supplement to expand the diet.
Canned purees made from meat or vegetables should not contain salt, pepper, starch, or onions. These components will not be digested in the kitten’s body. A one-month-old baby can be offered Agusha baby puree – an inexpensive and high-quality option for feeding small children.
Convenient feeding option
The most common question is how many times a day to feed. Most of the monthly kittens eat with pleasure 6 times a day. Pay attention to your pet’s behavior. Does the squeak displeasedly and is anxious?
So it’s time to eat! On average, a kitten will eat 120 grams of food throughout the day. If he eats less, he may not like the proposed food. A viral infection is also possible. In any case, this is a reason to contact your veterinarian.
By the month of the month, night feedings can be removed if the pet sleeps peacefully throughout the night.
The fact that your fidget is happy with life and does not feel hunger is indicated by external signs:
the kitten has a dense physique, the coastal arches are not visible from under the skin, but they are well felt;
he is calm and active, does not squeak between feedings;
mucous membranes are pink, moist;
light brown stool, decorated;
daily weight gain of about 10 grams.
An approximate feeding schedule looks like this: 6.30, 10.00, 13.30, 17.00, 20.30, 24.00. After a midnight meal, the kitten will be ready to fully rest until the morning.
Is dog food allowed
The little researcher’s curiosity knows no bounds. Now he is confidently reaching for the dog’s bowl. Surely the owner is also wondering if the kitten will like the dog food?
Prepared dog foods smell different and taste different from cat food. This is due to the different nutritional requirements of cats and dogs, and, as a consequence, the different components of the finished product. For cats, from birth, mixtures with a high level of protein are selected.
In addition, in the dog’s body, vitamin A can be formed from ß-carotene, in cats, this is not possible. Simply put, you can satisfy a kitten’s curiosity once, but do it all the time – in no case! Over time, the pet will develop a lack of nutrients and metabolic disorders.
By the way, the nutritional value of cat food is always higher than that of dog food.
Is it possible to dry
The opinions of veterinarians about the age of a kitten, in which it is possible to taste “adult” food for the first time, differ. Some of them do not recommend introducing the pet to dry food earlier than 2 months, while others follow the principle “the sooner the better”. Whether or not to give such food to the baby is up to the owner.
In a one-month-old baby, the milk teeth have not yet grown stronger, and the muscles of the jaws are not sufficiently developed. If you want to take a chance, soak the dry granules with warm water first, this will make them easier to chew.
To successfully adapt to a new food, follow these simple rules:
do not exclude the milk mixture, at least until the age of 2 months of the crumbs;
do not exceed the daily dose of dry food (20 – 30 grams per day);
if the brand of feed does not cause negative reactions, do not change it;
divide the total daily dose over three meals;
monitor compliance with the drinking regime;
do not use adult food.
Advice! Do not give your pet extra vitamin complexes. Dry food already contains minerals and trace elements.
Is it possible to have homemade food from the table
It is strictly forbidden to kittens!
If you follow a strict diet without salt, sugar, spices, and also do not eat spicy, smoked, fried foods – yes, you can periodically feed your baby from your table.
In all other cases, human food is not suitable for a kitten. Even if it is a sausage made from natural products or home preservation. Excess fats, calories, and preservatives are not good for anyone.
Another product strictly prohibited is potatoes. Neither boiled, nor fried, nor in any other form. It simply cannot be absorbed by the feline organism.
Prohibited homemade food
There are two types of cat owners. The first one will say: “Eat what they give!” and will persistently offer the pet a convenient option for YOURSELF. The second owner acts according to the principle “Eat at least something!” and will offer anything to shove an extra spoonful of food into your pet. Both strategies are fundamentally wrong. The food should be healthy, even if your cat doesn’t agree with it.
When choosing a diet for a kitten, one should take into account the harm that a particular product can bring:
Salt, sugar, marinades are substances that disrupt metabolism.
Fish with bones – to avoid injury to the gastrointestinal tract.
Pork – contains too much fat, the risk of infection with helminths.
Potatoes – not digestible due to a large amount of starch.
Legumes – provoke gas formation in the intestines.
Fish (more often 2 times a week) – the risk of urolithiasis.
Caffeinated drinks – stress on the nervous system and heart.
Vegetables – broccoli, avocado, garlic, tomatoes, and onions. The specific composition of the products is not suitable for feeding the kitten.
Nuts – due to their high phosphorus content, are harmful to the kidneys. In addition, the pet can choke on careless food intake.
Raisins – causes flatulence.
Mushrooms are capable of accumulating toxic substances.
Choose a cat food basket with these requirements in mind, and your kitten will be absolutely happy.
Below is a table with a detailed description of food and the frequency of their use by a kitten at the age of 1 – 1.5 months.
Product type Frequency of use
Lean meat daily
Fish without bones 1 – 2 times a week
Boiled chicken 3-4 times throughout the week
Offal no more than 3 times a week, liver – 1 time a week
Egg yolk no more than 2 times in 7 days
Greens (lettuce, spinach) – mixed with cottage cheese up to 2 times a week
Milk products every day
Vegetable oil (a few drops) in a day
Milk porridge daily
Non-acidic curd 3-4 times a week
Vegetables several times throughout the week
Fermented milk products every day, cheese – no more than 1 time a week
Cereals several times over 7 days
Fresh drinking water must be in stock all the time
Features by breed
Each breed of cat has its own feeding characteristics. Consider the nutrition of the most popular purebred kittens – British, fold, and hairless breeds. If you are a happy owner of such a pet, you should study their needs in more detail.
Babies of this breed are rapidly growing and gaining weight, have a stocky physique. The British and Chinchillas from very birth need high-calorie food, their diet should be about 65% meat and 25% vegetables.
A warning! Vitamin supplements for British people are selected based on the increased need for calcium. Canina and Gimpet natural products have proven themselves well.
The natural blue color of the pet changes with the frequent use of carrots, liver, or kelp. This fact must be taken into account when the cat participates in exhibitions and competitions.
Lop-eared babies up to 3 months of age eat at least 6 times a day. This active baby is quickly saturated and begins to feel hunger again. Some breeders note that the more satisfying the pet’s diet, the better their coat looks.
There is an interesting sign: if the Scots are fed with cow’s milk, then their adjoining ears “stand up” due to high doses of calcium and the kitten will lose its attractiveness. Of course, this is nonsense. Lop-earedness is a genetic feature and has nothing to do with feeding. And the birth of a kitten with erect ears in the litter is just natural selection.
The representatives of the breed have a congenital tendency to allergies, arthrosis, and urolithiasis. When choosing a diet, focus on high-quality food without flavors and preservatives.
Owners of Don Sphynxes, Canadian Sphynxes, Bambino, Dwelf, Ukrainian Levkoy, and other bald breeds know that their pets have a healthy appetite and are absolutely undemanding to food. Their weak point is a sensitive digestive system and a tendency to obesity. It is this combination of “constant hunger – excess weight” that determines the principles of nutrition of the Sphinxes. You must:
Ensure a strict feeding schedule without uncontrolled access to the bowl.
Does the amount of feed-in strictly accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions.
Feed the pet for a certain amount of time, picking up the bowl when it expires.
Due to the lack of hair, Sphinxes waste a lot of energy. Their food should be high in calories and varied. Pets have delicate skin, which needs zinc, B vitamins, and polyunsaturated acids for good condition.
Feed from different manufacturers
After examining the packaging of the finished food, we see that each manufacturer considers its products to be the best for a kitten. It would seem that by taking the “best” from different manufacturers, you can provide your pet with all the necessary substances, plus diversify its diet. However, it’s not that simple.
The product line of each brand is developed with its own characteristics in terms of composition, the combination of components, and vitamin and mineral supplements. By choosing one brand for feeding, you can be sure that the components of the feed are interchangeable and complement each other.
By purchasing different feeds for a pet, instead of full nutrition, we risk getting complications from the digestive tract or, even worse, irreversible metabolic disorders.
If the kitten eats any one brand, he is cheerful and playful, does not show anxiety, does not change the food. This will keep you safe from future problems.
A few words about the ready-made feed. When a kitten owner prefers commercially prepared foods, only premium or Superpremium brands should be selected. Products of the middle price category are not suitable – they have an unbalanced composition and often use raw materials of poor quality. Special lines of ready meals designed for 1-month-old kittens are produced by many companies with a proven track record:
Royal Canin food labeled Mother and Babycat. The product is allowed for use by kittens who have reached one month of age. Produced in granular form, quickly soluble in water. The composition of the feed contains an easily digestible protein, which is necessary for the normal development of the pet.
Hill’s Science Plan Kitten mousse and granulate. The manufacturer of this feed has focused on natural ingredients such as turkey and poultry protein.
Arden Grange Kitten is a food with the addition of prebiotics (substances to improve the digestion of food). The protein level in the mixture is 34%.
Perfect fit Junior is a ready-made mixture with conflicting reviews, despite the attractive cost with a well-chosen composition. The feed, containing 24% protein, is additionally fortified and enriched with mineral components.
Eukanuba Cat Kitten is a commercial feed made from chicken liver and chicken meat. Differs in an increased level of protein – 36%. No preservatives or flavor enhancers.
Pro plan junior is an industrial feed with an optimal composition. In addition to 20% chicken meat, bovine colostrum is included in the composition to enhance immunity and form normal intestinal microflora. Protein level increased to 42%.
When choosing food for a kitten, you should be guided by both the composition and the individual needs of the baby. Almost all premium feeds have a wide range of finished product flavors that can satisfy the little fussy.
How to teach a month-old kitten torn from mom to eat independently
By the third week of life, a healthy kitten wakes up a healthy interest in food, because nutrition is one of the basic instincts for the survival of an individual.
All that is required of you is to gently push the pet towards independence while observing its safety.
Start with milk. After dipping your finger, let the kitten sniff and lick it, then gently push the baby’s face towards the bowl.
Perhaps he will sneeze or even crawl into milk with his front paws, this is absolutely normal because he is still studying. But don’t let him see food as entertainment. Teach your baby to the food culture from childhood and in adulthood, you will get a cat with a balanced character and adequate actions.
After a few days, the kitten will eat on its own, and you will be able to gradually introduce the first complementary food. First, it should be dishes of a delicate consistency – liquid porridge, pâté from raw meat with broth. Grind harder food pieces with a blender.
Dry food is the most difficult food for a pet. It is moistened with liquid until the baby begins to eat confidently and accurately.
Habits play an important role in a kitten’s life. The sooner he gets used to a strict daily routine, the easier it will be for him to get used to the new conditions.
The best shampoos for cats, both conventional and specialized medicinal, a rating of popular
The feeding area should be quiet and secluded and away from the litter box. After choosing a meal schedule, do not change the clock unnecessarily, so as not to cause anxiety to the baby.
Advice! Buy utensils and feeding utensils that are safe, easy to clean, and free from sharp parts.
A kitten is an extremely demanding creature, he will not eat from a dirty or uncomfortable bowl. If we see a situation when “the kittens have grown a little, but they don’t want to eat from the bowl,” then before raising a panic, pay attention to the pet’s behavior. Is he cheerful, active, moderately cheerful? So the problem is not health. Try changing your feeding accessories, the question may go away.
Do several kittens live in the apartment? Separate their bowls in different corners of the room, avoid competition and hostility.
Watching how your pet develops and grows, you will experience an incredible range of feelings. Yesterday’s baby, who took its first steps, is gradually turning into an independent cat – proud, self-sufficient, and incredibly charming. Thanks to proper nutrition, its coat is silky and shiny, and its constitution is harmonious.
Cats are not dogs! They are contradictory creatures. They do not give their love to the first person they meet. Know: if you deserve the love of a furry friend, this is entirely your victory!