Getting newborn kittens is undoubtedly a very special experience. There is nothing quite like the laughter, warmth, and joy that tiny kittens bring with them. Also, it makes sense why the internet is flooded with videos and pictures of adorable kittens. They are entertaining, loving, and fun.
Although it is exciting, caring for newborn kittens might also appear daunting. The care you provide to these little ones depends on whether their mother is in the picture or not. When it comes to newborn kittens care FL, you have to consider if the mother is present or not.
Is The Mother Present?
With the mother present, you will not have to do as much. Mostly, cats have instinctive abilities for raising their little ones. Thus, a mother cat will take all the important actions at different stages of the young one’s life.
What you have to do is to make sure they are safe, secure, and warm. However, if you are taking care of newborn kittens that don’t have a mother, you will have to perform all these duties yourself. In case of rescuing a stray kitten, make sure that the mother is not present to take care of the young one. Otherwise, you might unknowingly separate the young one and its mother.
Keeping Them Warm
Kittens under the age of four weeks cannot thermoregulate. Thus, you have to warm up their body temperature before doing anything else. Also, you can touch the tips of their ears or paws to check if they are cold.
One way of providing warmth is using a heating disk at the opening of their crate or cage. The heating disk can usually provide warmth for up to eight hours. Make sure you are careful about the temperature, and it shouldn’t be too hot.
In addition, you can cover the disk with a blanket or a towel to prevent its direct contact with the kitten. Another way you can keep the young ones warm is by wrapping a hot-water bottle in a piece of a soft piece of cloth or towel.
You can then let the kittens snuggle with it for warmth. Having adequate is particularly important for the first few weeks. In case the mother is present, kittens cling to their body for heat.
Feeding A Newborn Kitten
Newborn kittens who have mothers feed on their mother’s milk for the initial few weeks of their life. It carries all the nutrients they require, and you will not have to provide any further dietary supplements. However, if the mother cat is not available, you will have to find other alternatives.
Also, it is best that you check with your vet for more appropriate recommendations. In addition, reliable cat shelters and rescues can also provide assistance for newborn kitten care.
Furthermore, you could try and find a foster mother for your little one, who also just had a litter of kittens. She will have enough milk to share with your young one. If that isn’t an option, however, you will need a milk replacer along with a dispenser like a syringe or an eye-dropper.
Moreover, getting professional help is a good idea in this case. There are many newborn pet care centers and shelters that can help you learn the proper feeding technique. Everyday weight gain suggests that you are meeting the nutritional needs of your kittens. Weighing these little ones can help ensure healthy weight gain and calculate the feed amount for every meal.
Stimulating Kittens for Urination and Defecation
Newborn kittens cannot relieve themselves naturally and need some assistance for the job. It is usually the mother cats who groom their young ones for excretion on a daily basis. They do this by licking the anal parts and abdomen of their kittens.
If you are serving as the foster parent for your kittens, you will have to carry out this important task. Kittens that are too young cannot defecate or urinate on their own and will need some assistance. Thus, it is an essential part of newborn kitten care.
Take a wet washcloth or towel, which acts as a good substitute for the tongue of the mother cat. Then gently massage the genitals and anal region until the kitten urinates or poops. Also, don’t overstimulate as it can cause irritation. Furthermore, keep a check on lingering dirt and chafing. As your kittens grow up, you can start their litter training.
Handling A Newborn Kitten
If your kitten is under two weeks of age, you should ideally use gloves for proper handling. Also, avoid touching the kittens if they are with their mother, as they can get quite protective. In addition, kittens are prone to disease and infection.
Thus, picking them up or doing unnecessary handling can harm them. You can introduce them to human touch once they are older than two weeks.
Socializing Your Kittens
When it comes to the growth and development of your kittens, socializing them with other animals as well as family members is incredibly important. Also, if you have other pets like dogs, you will have to carry out appropriate interspecies interaction. For the proper behavioral and social development of your kittens, you will require the following:
- Litter box training
- Toy introduction
- Frequent cuddling and petting
- Exploring paper bags, boxes, etc.
- Rewarding positive behavior with treats
- Redirection from negative behaviors like scratching or biting
- Introduction to other animals and humans
- Weekly grooming, combing, and proper handling
- Nail trimming
As fun as the process of raising kittens is, you will have to fully invest yourself in doing a proper job. Also, it is incredibly important that you take into account the time commitment and make sure there is no negligence in the development of your kittens.
If you intend to put your kittens up for adoption, you will have to make sure there are people-friendly and sociable by that time. Kittens are likely to socialize with their littermates and moms if they have them around.
Hopefully, this article gave you some insight into the essentials of newborn kitten care. Using this advice as well as professional veterinary assistance, your kitten will develop into a loving, strong, and sociable cat.