With the advent of the little furry house, many owners are thinking about how to properly feed the kitten so that it can grow and develop as harmoniously as possible.
If learning to swallow, playing, or even training can be dealt with by trial and error, nutritional principles should be approached more thoroughly. Improper eating habits can lead to negative chronic diseases and significantly ruin your pet’s life. Little purrs have a fragile body that is not able to digest most of the foods on your table. That is why it is so important to choose a special diet, taking into account the developmental characteristics of babies.
Today you will learn how and how to feed a kitten correctly, what time intervals between feedings should be at a given age, and what kind of food it is strictly forbidden to feed little fluffies.
In the article, we have also compiled a rating of the most popular and high-quality food for kittens, the composition of which is maximally balanced and adapted to the pet’s body.
Useful and forbidden foods for the smallest kittens
So, you brought a little kitten and are trying to figure out what to feed him. In fact, there are two options for creating a diet: ready-made food (which we will talk about a little later) and natural food. The second principle of nutrition refers to foods that you eat yourself.
Of course, far from all food, which is good for humans, is harmless to cats. Among the permitted products for little fluffies (up to 3-4 months), there are:
- Baby food. In any supermarket, you can find small jars that are created for feeding a baby. Most are fruit or vegetable-based, but you can also find puree meat. Make sure that lean meats are used in the creation of food (lamb and pork are strictly forbidden in kittens) – it is better to stay on mashed chicken, turkey, or rabbit.
- Low-fat cottage cheese, low-fat sour cream.
- Boiled lean meat, chopped in a blender or meat grinder. For older kittens (from 4 months old), you can simply cut the meat into small pieces. This will help shape the chewing reflex.
- Chicken bouillon.
A boiled egg (especially the yolk), minced with a blender or fork. For a more puree state, you can add some milk or low-fat sour cream to the crushed yolk.
Milk cooked porridge.
These products are ideal for becoming the first complementary food for a small kitten. Note that it is also important to know the list of prohibited foods that may pose a health hazard to the purr. The list of dangerous products includes:
- Potatoes – both raw and boiled;
- Tomatoes (especially raw) – contain toxins that the body of a fluffy cannot digest;
- garlic and onions (yellow, red, leek) – despite the fact that these products are of great benefit to our body, they are categorically contraindicated for small kittens (as well as for large cats), onions can cause anemia and lead to serious consequences;
- boiled rice has a negative effect on the work of the gastrointestinal tract;
- citrus fruits (however, kittens are so afraid of the smell of citrus fruits that they themselves will not eat lemons or oranges);
When composing a diet for a little furry, pay attention to the individual reaction of the animal. It often happens that the kitten simply does not like foods that are recommended for consumption and refuses to eat. This is important to consider, especially if you want to choose the most balanced diet possible. Listen to the requests of the animal to create a menu of products that he will happily gobble up on both cheeks.
If you notice a frequent lack of appetite and a bad reaction to seemingly normal food, it is advisable to show the kitten to the veterinarian.
Feeding a little kitten in the first months of life
The pet’s diet differs primarily depending on how many months or years it is. This is especially true for small kittens, whose body is growing at a rapid rate. Taking into account all our recommendations, you can choose the most balanced diet for the animal, which will take into account the peculiarities of the development of the purr.
How to feed a kitten up to 1 month old?
The smallest newborn kittens primarily need mother’s milk. It contains all the necessary components for growth and development, as well as hormones that are responsible for the development of the animal’s immunity. In some situations, it may happen that a little kitten is without a mother cat. Then a person can take over the food of the pussies. Luckily, you can get your kitten to survive separation from its mother at such an early age with minimal loss. How to feed babies 1-3 weeks old?
- Nurse Cat: Ask someone you know or advertise if there is a cat nearby that has just given birth. She can feed kittens, thus replacing their mother. Finding a wet nurse is pretty easy today. Message boards or social networks help you find the answer to any query. You can even try going to a pet store or veterinary clinic. Veterinarians can contact owners of a newly born cat and ask them for help with their babies.
- If the nurse is still not found, you can use a special mixture that replaces the mother’s milk for the kittens. You can buy it at any pet store or veterinary point.
- In the most extreme case, you can resort to the following recipe. Take good milk and boil it. After it has cooled slightly, combine it with the raw protein. The ratio of milk to protein should be 4: 1. Stir all the ingredients until smooth and you can start feeding the fuzzy.
- Formulas for babies sold in any pharmacy or supermarket are also suitable for feeding small kittens. However, it is advisable to dilute them with boiled water or milk.
How to feed a kitten at 1-month-old?
From 3-4 weeks of age, fluffs are still considered small, so their diet should be approached with special care. After a month of life, kittens can gradually begin to introduce the so-called complementary foods. Even with a one-month-old cat, the kittens walk away from their mother’s milk on their own and begin to try other foods.
Keep in mind that the furry’s food interest at this age is the strongest. Therefore, protect it from harmful products that can harm the health of the baby. The teeth, jaws and stomach of the purr are still not formed in order to try adult food. So, it’s best to start complementary foods with food that is similar in consistency to cat’s milk.
It is during this period that you can try to give vegetable or meat baby purees, which have a balanced composition, grated cottage cheese or cereals.
How to feed a kitten at 2 months?
From this point on, you can gradually start adding more solid foods to the fluffy’s diet. Move away from the milled food gradually so that the kitten has the opportunity to properly form the chewing reflex.
During this period, cats especially develop bones and muscles, so lean meat and cottage cheese will ideally fit into the fluffy menu. In order to replenish the necessary supply of vitamins, add boiled or steamed pumpkin and carrots to the animal’s diet.
Be careful not to overeat the Fuzzy. Two-month-old kittens are not yet so experienced and cannot determine when they are full. Therefore, try to feed the pussies as much as possible, observing certain intervals (which we will talk about a little later).
It is from the age of two months that special food for kittens becomes relevant. Choose quality products so as not to harm the health of the fluffy, but, on the contrary, provide it with all the necessary vitamins and minerals for the normal development of the body.
How to feed a kitten at 3 months old?
At 2-3 months, kittens begin to form teeth. That is why it is so important to include more solid food in the diet of pets. It is at this age that experts recommend adding a little raw meat to the fluffy menu. Please note that some types of meat can be infected with worms. Therefore, be sure to take all the necessary steps to prevent helminths in the animal.
In addition to meat products, a kitten’s diet may include:
- raw vegetables, grated on a coarse grater or cut into small pieces;
- lean fish (make sure there are no bones);
- porridge with milk;
- low-fat cottage cheese and sour cream;
- natural yogurt.
How to feed a kitten after six months?
At the age of 5-6 months, the kitten’s body is already fully formed. Therefore, it’s time to go to the standard adult and look. By this age, food habits are already finally formed, so you can create a menu based on the wishes of your pet.
How to feed a small kitten basic recommendations.
To create the most balanced healthy diet, we suggest that you familiarize yourself with the advice of leading veterinarians and felinologists:
- Make sure that all the products that go to the kitten’s plate are as fresh as possible.
- Avoid smoked foods, sausages, and spices altogether. Of course, the animal may like these products, but the health of the kitten is more important. Sausage and smoked dishes negatively affect the functioning of the gastrointestinal tract and the general health of the pet.
- The temperature of the food should be at room temperature. In no case should you overheat or cool the dishes.
- Make sure that the animal is drinking enough fluids. This should be clean drinking water (from the tap). Change the water in the bowl and rinse the container daily.
- Large pieces of food should be cut even if the kitten is more than 5 months old. The animal has a hard time chewing large pieces of food.
Following all the rules, your kitten will be well-fed and absolutely happy.
Natural food for a kitten
We have already said above that there are two basic principles of feeding small pets: prepared food and natural food. Now we will talk about the second option. Feeding with natural foods may seem to be quite a complex and time-consuming process. Moreover, the constant cooking attracts few people. And over time, animals can form their preferences, which will not necessarily coincide with the recommended norms.
However, there are no difficulties in this type of feeding. The main thing is to follow the basic rules and include only products that are useful for the cat. Fortunately, there are quite a few of them. If you have already decided to feed the little fluffy natural food, it is important to properly shape the food basket. Going to the store, buy the following products for the kitten:
- Meat. Meat products are the basis of the daily diet of both an adult and a small cat. Most of all, beef, rabbit and fish (marine lean) are suitable for the growth and development of the animal. You need to feed the kitten with fish no more than 1-2 times a week.
- Poultry (except for the fatty part of the chicken).
- Milk products. Helpful for the development of kitten bones. Please note that not all fluffies can digest regular cow’s milk. Therefore, it is recommended to replace it with low-fat cottage cheese. Mix a small amount of cottage cheese with raw yolk or milk. We can assure you that this will become one of the little purr’s favorite treats. You can also give your kitten a small number of fermented milk products (kefir, yogurt) or low-fat sour cream.
- Cellulose. Some vegetables and cereals are especially rich in this component. At a young age, it is recommended to cook porridge in cow’s milk, while for older kittens (from 3 months), you can cook porridge in chicken or beef broth.
Special food for kittens
If you do not have time to cook for a kitten, or if you want to make the animal’s diet as balanced as possible (the ideal ratio of BJU, vitamins, and minerals), choose quality food for small kittens. They are most convenient for fuzzy tech owners who spend a lot of time at work.
Feed from popular manufacturers contains all the ingredients necessary for the growth and development of the animal. Most of the world-famous brands today are engaged in the production of special products for little pussies.
To begin with, it should be noted which categories of feed are distinguished on the market today.
- Economy class – The cheapest product, which differs by far from the best composition and is unlikely to benefit a small kitten. It attracts more with its cost. So, if you care about how healthy the furry grows, it is better not even to look in the direction of economy class feed.
- Premium class – More expensive food that is ideal for cats. However, with small animals, it is better not to resort to this type of food on a regular basis. Of course, it contains all the necessary vitamins and minerals, and also has a balanced composition. However, flavor enhancers, flavors, and colors can often be found among the ingredients.
- Super-premium class – Ideal food for little kittens. These products contain all the ingredients you need. It contains no allergens and various chemical additives.
- Holistic – The most expensive food, which has the most natural composition.
Before you start choosing food for kittens, it is important to figure out at what age you can give finished products to babies. In fact, the recommended age of the furry is often indicated on the packaging (the main thing is not earlier than 3 months). Initially, it is recommended to give liquid food or canned food – a cat’s fragile teeth will perfectly cope with such food. While after 3-4 months, when the kitten’s teeth have become much stronger, try gradually introducing dry food.
We have highlighted the top 3 brands of food for little kittens. Take a closer look at these brands for truly quality food for your furry friend.
A popular manufacturer of cat food offers wet food for little purrs. The products belong to the category of super-premium class. The composition contains exclusively natural ingredients. An important advantage of the feed is its high protein content.
By the way, protein should form the basis of a cat’s diet at any age.
In addition to a balanced composition, this food has a vitamin and mineral complex that saturates the animal’s body with all the necessary microelements. Other advantages of the product include:
- high quality of each ingredient;
- lack of additives (flavors, flavor enhancers, dyes);
- relatively low cost;
- a wide range of availability (you can buy food at any pet store).
Among the disadvantages of the product, it is possible to single out only the presence of ingredients (for example, maize) that can cause allergies in the kitten.
Unlike the previous feed, this product belongs to the premium class. However, do not rush to conclusions – its composition is quite good, although it has minor flaws.
However, let’s talk about the benefits of Hills Feed first:
- the presence of a vitamin-mineral complex in accordance with the age of the animal;
- wide assortment (the line of feed includes a large number of tastes);
- you can find Hills food in many pet stores and even supermarkets;
- affordable cost.
Most of the disadvantages of this product are in its composition:
- the presence of ingredients that cause an allergic reaction in a small kitten;
- despite the high concentration of protein, most of it is of plant origin, which is not very useful for babies;
- high concentration of carbohydrates;
- most of the feed is liquid (which can even be a plus for kittens who do not consume much water).
Proplan (Junior series)
One of the most popular manufacturers of cat food, which produces special food for little furries. Today you can buy such food both in a vet pharmacy or pet store and in a regular supermarket. The product has a huge number of advantages:
- a wide range of flavors;
- the high content of animal proteins;
- vitamin and mineral complex;
- the presence of prebiotics in the composition;
- a balanced composition that fully meets the needs of the little kitten’s body.
Among the disadvantages of the product, one can single out only the presence of artificial preservatives and corn, which is an allergen for animals.
List of prohibited foods for little kittens.
One of the most common stereotypes says that a little kitten will happily devour sausages and lap up cow’s milk. In fact, the preparation of the menu for a fluffy ball should be approached much more carefully and carefully. After examining the foods that can be given to a kitten at this age, it is also important to list prohibited foods that may by mistake be in the purr’s diet.
Above, we mentioned some foods that the kitten’s body may not digest. And some of them can even cause serious illness. However, in addition to the already mentioned food, it is also important to list foods that are not poisonous, but with constant use can cause some health problems for the animal. These include:
- Liver. In small portions, it can sometimes even be useful. The liver saturates the body of the kitten with vitamins of groups A and D. However, if the liver of the animal is given on a regular basis, hypervitaminosis can occur, which will lead to a number of diseases.
- Legumes: Provoke an unpleasant sensation in the kitten’s stomach, may cause bloating or constipation.
Potatoes Starch, which is the basis of potatoes, is practically not absorbed by the body of kittens and leads to gastrointestinal diseases.
- Economy class feed. If there is no choice, you can periodically feed the kitten with economic food. However, on an ongoing basis, such products will simply destroy the health of the animal.
River fish. If sea fish can still be given 1-2 times a week, then with river fish you should be especially careful.
Please note that for some breeds there is a separate list of prohibited foods. So, if your furry has its own pedigree, research what foods he can and what not. Certain foods can lead to allergic reactions or other more serious illnesses. For example, the owner of large noble Maine Coons should exclude both river and sea fish from the diet. It harms the pet’s digestive tract.
Feeding a kitten – we observe the regime
The number of meals of duck (however, as in humans) will depend on age.
- A small kitten (up to 3 weeks old) needs to be fed 9-10 times throughout the day. Please note that at this age, night feeds should also be present (at least 3 times).
- From 3 weeks to 1 month, you can slowly remove one feeding and leave 8 meals a day.
Before 2 months, take 1 to 2 more meals.
- Fluffy three-month-old kittens are recommended to be fed about 6 times a day.
- Up to 5 months, animals should be fed 5 times a day. At this time, it is already possible to completely remove the night feeds and distribute the food evenly throughout the active day.
- After half a year, kittens usually eat about 4 times a day.
- Until a year, they are already switching to a rarer meal: breakfast, lunch, and dinner. As with people, it is important for kittens to build the correct regime. It is advisable to feed them at the same time every day. For example, breakfast can be served at 8 am, lunch at 3 pm, and dinner at 7-8 pm.
How much food to give kittens?
Not only the number of meals but also the weight of one serving will depend on the age of the fluffy. For the most part, it is calculated based on the weight of the fluff. On average, 250 g of food per day is used for 1 kg of pet.
That is, if your fuzzy weighs about one and a half kilograms, he needs 370-400 grams of food per day. After you have figured out how much food a kitten needs, it is also important to calculate the percentage of meat, dairy products, vegetables, porridge so that you can choose the most balanced diet. Over time, pussies will develop dietary habits. What kind of food they will love, and what kind of categorically avoids. Note that in some cases this may signal a lack of a certain group of vitamins and minerals in the fur’s body.
Remember that the little kitten is just beginning to explore the world. Therefore, each product seems to him as a new important stage. Therefore, it is important to correctly form the feeding behavior of the animal. A well-fed and healthy purr will certainly thank you for your care and become the best friend and member of your family.