If you want to prepare the kitten weaning, first determine when you can wean the cat. Think that this process, of natural form, begins when they have 4 weeks of life, that is to say 1 month, and finishes between the 8 and 10 weeks, moment in which the cat will be weaned of the whole.
Are you interested in knowing all the details about when cats are weaned and how to do it? In a Pet O Club we invite you to continue reading this article, because in it we reveal the details so that you find it easier to achieve it, both you and the little cats and their mother.
At what time cats are weaned – discover the best age
At what age do the kittens begin to wean? This is the first question that must be resolved when we take charge of a litter or an orphan kitten. If the children are with their mother, it is likely that we will see how this process begins naturally, without us having to intervene, because we will see that the little ones begin to taste the food of their mother’s plate or dish and ask us Try our own food, with meows and even climbing on the table. However, if they are orphans, we will only see this behavior in some cases when they begin to show interest in what we eat.
Thus, the weaning of cats begins at 4 weeks of age, never before, although it may take a few more days to start. It is not something that happens suddenly, but it is a process that can last a certain time until they stop taking breast milk, or special powdered milk for orphaned cats, and they only eat solid food, either homemade food or, I think or grainy.
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When we care for orphaned or found kittens in the street, we often have doubts about their age and, perhaps, the task of weaning them may be a little more complicated. To begin with, it will be necessary for us to know how old the children are.
How can you know the age of a cat
Knowing the age of small children can sometimes be easy, but getting the exact weeks right can be more complicated. To facilitate the task, the best thing is for a veterinarian to help us find out. However, there are certain aspects that we can easily detect at home to know the age of a feline, such as teeth, whether they have left or not, their weight and size and the reactions they may have to certain situations.
How long does it take a cat to wean itself
As we have noted before, small cats start weaning at 4 weeks, but the whole process can last until 8 or 10 weeks. Thus, cats can take between 1 month and 1 month and a half to wean themselves completely.
Therefore, during this month or a little more, we must be very attentive to your diet, as this will be combined between the milk of the cat or milk powder for cats and the solid food that we begin to give. It is best that you discuss with the veterinarian everything necessary, before starting to do tests on your own, to ensure a good transition and that the kitten is healthy.
Remember, also, that during this period of time it is vital that you feed your cat well after the birth, because this way she will be able to produce well the milk that the little ones need.
How to wean a cat
Now that you know at what age they start and how long it may take, you may ask yourself “how to wean my cat?”. To begin, not only do you have to look at the age of the animal, but it is also necessary to look at its behavior to recognize whether it is ready or not. Thus, the signs that will indicate that your kitten is ready to wean are the following:
- The teeth begin to appear in your gums.
- She does not have enough with breast milk, she does not stay satiated and she asks for more food, meowing and looking for food, for example, on the cat’s plate, in the kitchen or at the table.
- Bite the nipples of the cat, the bottle, your fingers while playing or other objects.
To properly wean the cat, it is necessary that, if the mother is, let it be a natural process. That is, allow the mother to continue feeding him as many times as he wants, but also offer him some soft and soft food, never start with the cat food. For example, you can give it a little chicken or turkey on the grill, without salt or sauces added.
Little by little, you will see that every time she is more interested in solid food than in her mother’s milk, until a day will come that she will no longer breastfeed and that the cat will no longer produce milk.
How to wean orphaned cats
In the case of the orphaned kittens that we bottle-feed, the process is very similar. The difference is that we will have to mark the periods, the milk intake and the moments in which we give them solid food. The most advisable thing is that we talk to the veterinarian about the best way to carry out the process, always according to the health status of the children.
What happens if a cat is weaned prematurely
Premature weaning can cause various problems in kittens. This situation can occur for various reasons, but the most common is usually because the mother is not present from the beginning, but we must try to give them formula milk until they reach the minimum weeks for weaning, or because there has been a rush to separate the small ones of the mother, as it happens in some cases in which the adopters or buyers are in a hurry to have the small one, something that can be a great error for the health, the socialization and the learning of the small one.
Among the main problems of premature weaning, we highlight the following:
- Nutrient deficit, which can produce pica syndrome (eating objects such as plastics, walls or fabrics).
- Low defenses.
- Easier to fall ill.
- Problems learning to eat on your own.
- Little socialization
- Fear and distrust.
- Lack of control of the game, the bite, scratches, etc.
- Little toilet habit.
- Problems to use the sandbox for your needs.
Thus, problems do not only occur in physical health, but separating kittens from their mother soon will cause them not to learn most of the normal aspects of a cat, such as preening, relating, eating, hunting, playing, etc. It is easy for the little cat to grow up imitating the way of doing things of other animals that live with him, like a dog for example, or of the humans who care for him. Therefore, if during the learning stage his mother has not been able to teach him that he is a cat, he will not do the usual things of this species, but will imitate those he has seen up close.
When can a kitten be separated from its mother
As we have seen, separating a cat from the cat before time can bring serious consequences for the little one, as well as some problems for those who live with it.
To avoid these problems, it is recommended to wait at least 12 weeks of age, so it is not advisable to separate a kitten from its mother before 3 months of age. During this period the little one will learn almost everything he needs to know to develop in a healthy and balanced way as an adult cat.
This article is merely informative, in a Pet O Club we do not have the power to prescribe any veterinary treatment or make any kind of diagnosis. We invite you to take your pet to the veterinarian in case of any type of condition or discomfort.