kittens need to be fed carefully, as they must not only satisfy their hunger and absorb all the vitamins in their kitten food but must also stay hydrated. Basically, Kittens are different in many respects when compared to adult cats – that’s a fact. After all, they’ve come into the world not too long ago, and they’re still developing. Because of that, it’s important to ensure proper nutrition.
Certain fats and proteins are a must if you want the cat’s organs and tissues to develop in a healthy manner until they reach adulthood. For that reason, you must make sure you pick the best kitten food. In order to contribute to your cat’s optimal growth, in this guide I have gathered some high-quality products for you.
Let’s see what some good foods for kittens are, and what you need to know about kitten nutrition. Here are my kitten food reviews;
|Royal Canin Kitten Dry Cat Food||Price: $$
Weight: 15 pounds
Food Form: Dry Food Lifestage: Kitten
|View On Chewy|
|Blue Buffalo Wilderness Kitten Dry Cat Food||Price: $
Customer Rating: 4.8
Weight: 5 pounds
Food Form: Dry Food
|View On Chewy|
|Purina Pro Plan Focus Kitten Favorites Variety Pack Canned Cat Food||Price: $
Customer Rating: 4.4
Weight: 0.1875 pound
Food Form: Wet Food
|View On Chewy|
|Hill’s Science Diet Kitten Dry Cat Food||Price: $$
Customer Rating: 4.8
Weight: 15.5 pounds
Food Form: Dry Food
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|Nutro Wholesome Essentials Kitten Dry Cat Food||Price: $
Customer Rating: 4.9
Weight: 6.5 pounds
Food Form: Dry Food
|View On Chewy|
Best Kitten Food Reviews (Updated List)
1. Royal Canin Kitten Dry Cat Food
Royal Canin is one of the best kitten food brands, as a lot of customers have been pleased with the effect their products had on their furry friends. This one, in particular, is dry food and one that’s amazing for your pet’s muscles and overall health.
With a mix of proteins, minerals, and vitamins, this formula will effectively assist in the development of a small cat, which is why it’s such a great investment. While your kitty is very young, its muscles, teeth and internal organs are going through a stage of growth – and since you’re its parent now, you need to help with this process.
By feeding it this mix of ingredients, you will make sure your kitty will develop into a strong cat full of energy. At the same time, you will strengthen its immunity. Besides, the kibbles are easy to chew, just perfect for your pet’s teeth and smallmouth. So, if you’re looking for a healthy choice, Royal Canin has the product you need.
However, note that this kitten food contains some meat by-products, and these can cause some allergic reactions in some cases.
- For kittens from 4 months to 12 months old.
- Antioxidants to support the developing immune system.
- Digestive health.
- Small, easy-to-chew kibble.
2. Blue Buffalo Wilderness Kitten Dry Cat Food
Like it or not, felines are natural-born hunters. Their wild side is going to develop, and all you can do is assist in the growth. You can easily do this through this pack of Blue Buffalo dry food, which is sure to give your cat the strength it needs.
One of the main benefits you will find in this product is the lack of allergens. That’s right, this bag doesn’t contain any wheat, gluten, by-products or grains, so there’s one less thing to worry about regarding the kitten’s health. Conversely, it contains a good number of vitamins and minerals, which aim to improve your kitty’s immunity system and make it eager to jump around the house and explore every corner.
The product is made with real chicken, so there’s a huge chance that your feline’s little mouth will water whenever you’ll open the bag. In addition, the mix of ingredients will help not only with the cat’s growth but also with maintaining healthy digestion and a great mood. Proper nutrition and a healthy diet are a requirement, and this formula has both. It’s definitely one of the best dry kitten food recipes you’ll find on the market.
On the bad side, some reviewers said that their kittens got diarrhea after eating this product. This does not mean that it will also happen to your kitten but if it does, please contact your vet.
- Chicken recipe.
- High protein.
- Grain-free, gluten-free.
- No wheat, soy or poultry by-products.
- Rich in antioxidants, omega 3 and taurine.
3. Purina Pro Plan Focus Kitten Favorites Variety Pack Canned Cat Food
Although this doesn’t mean you should overlook giving your kitten water, wet cat food is essential as it contributes to the pet’s hydration. What better way to ensure you will be able to provide your cat with a balanced diet if not by purchasing a variety pack? With Purina Pro Plan, you have the opportunity to give your developing cat specialized nutrition that will ensure healthy growth.
This product was specially created for cats that are up to one year old, including ingredients that are helping with the development process. First of all, it’s important to note that real meat or fish are used as the prime ingredients for this formula’s creation. The other ingredients in the mix are essential minerals, nutrients, and vitamins that are meant to strengthen your feline’s immunity and let its internal organs grow healthy.
Since the pack contains 3 different recipes, your kitten will never get bored of eating the same food and plus will get all nutrients from meat to fish. Besides, your cat’s vision will be boosted with the help of this food. The fact that it contains taurine is a great benefit because it will improve the eyesight and make the heart healthier.
Nonetheless, it contains processed compounds, which is not the healthiest option out there, and some kitties might end up getting diarrhea.
- 1 can of a chicken & liver recipe, 1 can of ocean whitefish & tuna recipe, 1 can of salmon & ocean fish recipe.
- Healthy development of the immune system.
- Taurine for healthy eyesight.
- It can be used as a kibble topper.
- Made with real poultry and fish.
4. Hill’s Science Diet Kitten Dry Cat Food
Besides the obvious desire to help with your kitty’s growth and ensure its health, you also want to make sure the food you buy is tasty. As such, you can settle for this Hill’s Science Diet recipe, which could successfully fulfill these tasks.
If you buy this pack of food, you’ll be happy to know it contains savory chicken, while featuring special vitamins that are favorable for your feline’s eyesight and health. It’s perfect for cats that are up to one year old, and with its taste, it’s sure to make your kitty lick its mouth after eating it.
Dry food can contribute to proper nutrition if mixed with enough wet food and water to maintain the hydration, so ensure you take this into account.
One small disadvantage might be the size of the pieces, which could be too big for the tiny mouth of a kitten.
- Chicken recipe.
- For kittens and pregnant or nursing cats.
- Natural DHA from fish oil for healthy brain and eye development.
- Packed with antioxidants and vitamins for a healthy immune system.
- No artificial colors, flavors or preservatives.
- Hight quality protein and minerals for lean muscles, strong bones, and teeth.
5. Nutro Wholesome Essentials Kitten Dry Cat Food
Why settle for cheap and low-quality food when you have this product? After all, you want your kitty to grow healthy and happy, and an important contributor to this is the food you give it.
As a kitten is developing and growing into an adult, it needs certain vitamins that will assist the process and make it more effective. This formula combines many ingredients that make this possible. For instance, it contains taurine, which is very good at helping with a feline’s vision. Additionally, it has calcium in order to help the kitten develop strong bones by the time it reaches adulthood. Even more, the fatty acids and antioxidants found inside the mix are beneficial for the development and growth and for the well-functioning of the immunity.
This dry food formula doesn’t contain anything artificial so it might be a great option for you.
Nevertheless, some of the negative reviews mentioned that the food was hard to chew for their little felines.
- Farm-raised chicken recipe.
- Calcium for strong bones and joints.
- Antioxidants for a healthy immune system.
- Taurine for eye health.
- No GMOs and no artificial flavors, colors or preservatives.
6. Merrick Purrfect Bistro Grain-Free Healthy Kitten Recipe Dry Cat Food
Let’s be honest, now: nobody likes watching their pet get sick or have allergic reactions to substances. One of the things that you might fear is giving your kitty the wrong food. There are many low-quality formulas out there, but this Merrick Purrfect Bistro bag of dry food is not one of them. In fact, it might be one of the best dry kitten food that your feline is going to try.
First things first, this bag lacks anything that could be detrimental for your baby cat’s health, such as artificial flavors and colors, grains or preservatives. In other words, your kitty will be able to enjoy a healthy meal without worrying about any adverse reactions.
Secondly, it has an overwhelming number of benefits that are hard to get if you settle for the first dry cat food you see on the shelf. In this bag, you will find a mix of healthy products, comprised of vitamins, antioxidants, minerals, and nutrients that enhance a small cat’s health and assist in its growth. Many of these compounds will ensure you have a cat with amazing sight, clean, healthy and shiny skin and coat, strong bones, and strong immunity. The only little disadvantage it might have is the possibility of causing diarrhea in some kittens.
- Chicken recipe.
- DHA for eye and brain development.
- Omega 6 and Omega 3 fatty acids for nourishing skin and fur.
- Antioxidants for a healthy immune system.
- Yuca shidigera for easy digestion.
- Free of by-product meals, wheat, corn, soy, artificial colors, flavors or preservatives.
7. Wellness CORE Grain-Free Kitten Formula Dry Cat Food
Rich in proteins and vitamins, Wellness Core Kitten Formula could be the dry food you’ve been waiting for if you want your kitty to develop in a healthy way. Containing a lot of nutrients, you can rest assured that this food will positively impact your cat’s growth.
One of the biggest benefits of this magical package is the fact that it isn’t mixed with any grains, fillers, wheat or artificial stuff. It’s pretty much what you need if you don’t want to settle for an unhealthy diet for your cat.
Furthermore, the formula has a great number of vitamins and minerals which are beneficial not only for the cat’s muscles but also for its immunity. Besides, the taurine found in the same composition will increase the feline’s visual abilities, helping it become a strong adult cat.
The main ingredients used to create this product are turkey and chicken, so no need to worry that the recipe has an unpleasant taste. Your kitten should be able to enjoy every bite.
- Turkey & chicken recipe.
- 65% of high-quality proteins.
- DHA from salmon oil to support eye and brain development.
- Vitamins, minerals, and prebiotics for a healthy immune system.
- No meat by-products, fillers, artificial flavors or preservatives.
8. Iams ProActive Health Kitten Dry Cat Food
High-quality kitten food should be able to bring a lot of benefits to the table. It needs to deliver amazing nutritional value, as well as health benefits. Well, the product that is able to give you both is the Iams ProActive dry food.
The fact that it contains a great number of healthy ingredients has a good influence on the cat’s muscles and immune system. Additionally, the kibbles are made in such a way that they can prevent any potential gum disease, which is a huge benefit considering the importance of a cat’s oral cavity.
You shouldn’t refrain from buying this Iams product if you want your kitten to be healthy and fed properly.
- Chicken recipe.
- For kittens and pregnant or nursing cats.
- Omega 3 DHA for healthy brain development.
- Taurine for eye health.
- Prebiotics and beet pulp for digestive health.
- Vitamin E for a strong immune system.
- Calcium for strong bones.
- Small kibble for easy pickup.
9. Instinct by Nature’s Variety Kitten Grain-Free Natural Wet Canned Cat Food
Offering your kitten some mouth-watering food is an essential part of being a cat owner, especially if you want to see it happy. This canned cat food has the power to make that happen. Made with high animal protein and mixed with real salmon, chicken and beef liver, you don’t have to worry about the food being gross for your little feline.
Even more than that, this recipe is one of the best kitten wet food types because it’s grain-free. This means that you won’t have to worry about your kitten getting a sick tummy. It also lacks potato, soy, corn, by-products, artificial ingredients or wheat. Overall, it’s a great way to ensure your cat doesn’t develop an allergic reaction or even an illness.
The nutrients and vitamins found within this wet cat food should be enough to spur the kitty’s growth and development and make your pet thrive. It will have just the proper energy and strength to play and live its youth the way it desires.
One important aspect of cats is their ability to see in the dark. In other words, they have superior visual abilities, and you can help them reach their peak with this canned food. Basically, this formula contains natural DHA sources, which can help develop the eyesight and form a healthy brain.
If you settle for this product, get your nose ready, because reviewers mentioned it has a strong smell.
- Chicken, salmon & beef liver recipe.
- Free of grain, potato, corn, wheat, soy, by-product meal, artificial colors or preservatives.
- DHA for healthy brain and eye development.
10. Purina Fancy Feast Kitten Canned Wet Cat Food
Being one of the best kitten food brands, Purina doesn’t hesitate to step up their game and come up with products of the highest quality. As kittens can’t eat the same food adult cats do, they came up with this wet canned food that will contribute to a kitty’s proper nutrition.
Kittens have small mouths, but this food won’t be an issue in that regard, as it’s easy to take bites of and chew due to its pate texture. Furthermore, it’s made with tender turkey, ensuring it has a pleasant taste that your small feline will come to love.
When Purina came up with this formula, they didn’t forget about one very important aspect – growth and development. With this in mind, they added a variety of proteins, vitamins, and minerals to make sure the growth is natural, and your kitty will become a healthy and strong adult.
Serve this wet cat food to your beloved four-legged friend, and you will be able to keep it healthy.
Through all the positive reviews, there were some negative ones saying the product caused bloating.
- Tender turkey recipe.
- Made with real milk.
- Smooth pate texture.
- Complete and balanced nutrition for kittens.
Kitten Food Buying Guide
One of the most essential things that contribute to a healthy growing kitten is its diet. Coming as no surprise, the food you choose has a great influence on the overall development of the junior feline. You love and cherish your kitty, after all, which means that you want to offer it the best food there is.
Therefore, here is a little guide that should help you choose foods of the highest quality:
What Ingredients Should Be Present in Kitten Food?
Especially during the cat’s first year of life, food should be chosen very carefully by taking a close look at the list of ingredients. Basically, kittens need more vitamins and minerals to help them grow strong and healthy, but they also require something that doesn’t affect their fragile organs.
As such, here are some ingredients that the kitten food of your choice must contain;
- Nutrients from Mother Cat’s Milk
The richness in nutrients is what makes mother milk so important, and it’s why kittens should stick to milk for the first month of their life. However, in certain situations when the kitten has been abandoned, you need to ensure these nutrients through other ways.
Fortunately, many manufacturers have studied the mother cat milk closely in other to find out what makes it so special. Afterward, the healthy compounds in the mother cat milk were added to kitten food, to ensure the little feline’s proper alimentation.
Some of these ingredients are taurine (which is very important as it helps boost the vision), as well as DHA and ARA that help with brain and eye development.
From early on, cats should have a diet that includes high-quality meat, for proper nutrition. Many products for kittens contain protein in the form of real chicken, fish, beef or other meats.
After all, cats are carnivores, so it’s recommended to introduce them to this diet from the time they’re very young. In addition, the protein will help the kitten have strong immunity and build muscles, an important aspect for a growing kitten.
- Digestive System Helpers
When the kitten is small, its digestive system is more sensitive, so it may react differently to particular foods or not digest them properly. Due to this, you must be on the search for foods featuring digestive system helpers.
One of these fibers is FOS, which is effective in getting rid of unhealthy substances and improving the overall performance of the digestive system. Dried beet pulp is also a good fiber source as it provides vitamins and minerals.
Even when they grow and their digestive system fully develops, fibers are still mandatory in a cat’s diet for digestive health. That is why there are many high fiber cat food choices available.
- Natural Preservatives
As small cats are more sensitive to the ingredients in the food, it’s important to make sure these ingredients are natural. Preservatives are meant to make the food last longer in different temperatures. While artificial ones do a better job, they could be detrimental to the feline’s health. So, you should settle for natural preservatives for kittens.
What Ingredients Should Be Avoided in Kitten Food?
Taking the fragility of your kitten into consideration, it’s normal to avoid certain ingredients that might upset its stomach or cause allergies. Here’s what you should exclude from the kitten’s diet:
- Primary Vegetable Protein Sources
Although it doesn’t mean that vegetables will be life-threatening for your kitty, it’s important to remember that cats are not vegetarians. While veggies do no evil, they won’t be able to provide the same amount of proteins as a diet based on meat. They might be a cheaper alternative, but don’t rely on them if you want your kitten to have a proper alimentation.
Gluten is generally added to cat food in order to increase the protein amount. Basically, this is created by washing wheat flour dough with water, which makes the starch dissolve. The result is an elastic compound that can taste like meat when flavored properly and that’s why it is added to some foods.
Gluten might work for vegetarians but, as mentioned above, cats aren’t fond of such a diet. They need real meat. Kittens must take their proteins from valid sources, and gluten won’t do the trick. Even worse, it might actually cause allergic reactions, and you surely don’t want that for your little furry friend.
Most hypoallergenic cat food options are gluten-free for that reason.
- Foods That Are Hard to Digest
During the first months of life, your kitten is underdeveloped, which means that its internal organs are not at their full capacity. Food needs to be easy to digest, which is why, in the first stages of life, wet food is mainly preferred over dry food. If the food is hard to digest, your kitten will have a hard time if you’re trying to get it used to the litter box. The last thing you want is to upset your four-legged friend’s tiny stomach.
Even adult cats can get upset stomachs and develop chronic vomiting. In that case, they should be fed cat food for sensitive stomach and vomiting.
- Unknown By-Products
Let’s be honest, you wouldn’t want to eat a meal with unknown ingredients. While actual by-products may not be so bad as they just contain animal body parts, unknown by-products could contain more than that. If these are included in the product you intend to buy, then don’t get it. All these by-products could be toxic for a fragile kitten.
What to Consider When Buying Kitten Food?
Finding the best cat food for kittens is not as easy as you’d want it to be. Different types and brands of food can all have different impacts on your cat, and it’s important to understand them unless you want to feed your kitty low-quality food.
Particular aspects need to be taken into consideration before you go shopping for top-notch kitten food. Here is what you should look for:
Wet & Canned Kitten Food:
When you purchase wet or canned food for your tiny feline, one of the things you’d want to pay attention to is the taste. Generally, you are going to notice that the food contains a wide variety of flavors, such as lamb, fish, pork, and chicken. Although this might sound good, you should understand that many foods contain artificial flavoring, something you should stay away from. It’s unhealthy and could cause serious health conditions for your kitten.
In addition, there are companies that add salt to the food, hoping that the taste will improve, and it will be easier to handle for the felines. This might work for adult cats (although it’s not desirable), but kittens are different and probably won’t appreciate it the same way.
- Level of Moisture
The purpose of wet food is to ensure a balanced diet and maintain your cat’s hydration. It’s not a bad thing, but too much of anything can be detrimental.
When you buy a 3 oz can of kitten food, you will see it usually has like 80% moisture. So, while up to 2.4 of the ounces are moisture, the other 0.6 ounces are the only amount left that will supposedly give your kitten the fat and protein it requires.
For this reason, many manufacturers are recommending giving your kitten four cans daily if wet food is all you’re giving it. If you are combining it with dry food instead, then two cans are the recommended amount.
You should always be prepared with enough money if you want your kitten to have the best conditions. Quality food is not the cheapest so you will have to spend quite some cash. This is also one of the reasons why a lot of cat owners stick to dry food instead of a wet one, as the latter is pricier.
The price also has a word to say when it comes to the proteins included. More expensive wet kitten food will generally contain more protein and fewer carbohydrates, which is just right.
- The Texture of the Food
Quality wet kitten food usually comes in multiple textures. For instance, it can be flaked, cubed, shredded or pate. The latter is the most commonly found as wet food, as it’s a great help for small cats. When they’re still young, kittens aren’t the most skilled at chewing. Pate food is very easy to chew and helps them adjust to solid food, which is why it’s such a great alternative.
Once your kitten starts growing and developing, you can switch to the other textures, which are very helpful in letting your cat learn how to chew.
Calories are a crucial part of a kitten’s alimentation because as the little feline is active, it consumes a lot of energy and it automatically needs more calories. On average, canned food has somewhere around 125 calories per 3 ounces.
So, if you settle for a wet or canned food diet, you can give it as much as it will eat until it is like 4 months old. You should feed it 3-4 times daily, considering how active your kitten normally is. Once it reaches six months, you can change the diet a little bit. 2/3 of a 3-oz. can per every pound of body weight is okay to be given daily. Afterward, you can give it about half a 3-oz. can per pound daily.
Even some adult cats which are underweight are known to be fed kitten food for its high calories as an alternative to cat food for weight gain.
Dry Kitten Food:
Taste is a very important thing to take into consideration. After all, just like you, a kitten wants to enjoy its food and not eat something that makes it gag at every bite. Well, dry food is easy to find and can come in a wide range of flavors.
Considering the carnivore nature of felines, you should look for dry food that has real meat as the main ingredient. This is a great way to ensure your cat doesn’t avoid its bowl of dry food.
Once again, you should refrain from purchasing kitten food that relies on artificial flavoring. It might give it a good taste, but you shouldn’t trade the kitten’s healthy state for it.
- Kibble Texture
Dry food comes in the form of kibbles. However, did you know that kibbles come in a variety of textures as well? Some can also be softer compared to other kibbles, but these are not always the best option unless your kitten suffers from dental issues.
Cats are natural-born hunters, and their teeth are a very important part of that – that’s why dental health should be taken into consideration. You need to help kittens maintain the whiteness and strength of the teeth.
There are many crunchy kibbles that are effective in reducing tartar, which is one of the reasons why they are so great in the first place, as compared to softer kibbles.
In general, dry food is cheaper than wet food. Nevertheless, the price also differs depending on the quality and brand of the food. Having said that, you need to prepare a budget if you want to buy the best and most reputable brand.
Even so, that doesn’t mean you can’t buy dry food rich in nutrients for a better price. Just keep in mind that you shouldn’t settle for the cheapest food you see on the shelf, as you have a good chance of purchasing something full of artificial ingredients. This would be detrimental to your kitten’s health.
If you want to find high-quality food, you can’t overlook the list of ingredients. Given the continuous development and growth of your little feline, you’ll want to assist the process with some helpful nutrients.
This is why it’s so important to take a look at the ingredients before you spend money on dry cat food. First of all, this food shouldn’t contain any artificial flavoring, coloring, and preservatives. It should be free of any grains or by-products. Some think that cats should not eat grains even when they grow up. Thus, there are many grain-free cat food brands on the market.
Conversely, the food should contain a lot of vitamins, such as vitamins E and C, which are good for the immune system. Even more, taurine should be found inside the dry kitten food because it helps to improve the eyesight, a precious thing for any kitty.
Moreover, make sure the main ingredient used to create the kibbles is natural meat, as it’s an important protein source.
Ingredients are a very important aspect to consider if you want to find the best dry kitten food.
While you might be looking to eat food that doesn’t have a high number of calories, your kitten is different. Just like children, kitties are generally more active, meaning that they will consume more energy as a result. Because of this, the food you provide your little pet should contain a lot of calories, which will serve as fuel.
On average, dry food contains like 300 calories per cup. Although it’s hard to know the exact amount you should be giving your kitten unless you visit your vet, there are typical guidelines suggesting the amount.
As such, a little cat should pretty much consume about ¼ to 1/3 cup at each feeding, up to around 8 weeks of age. Afterward, until it reaches 6 months, you can give it 1/3 to ¾ cups at each feeding.
Kitten Food or Cat Food?
At first glance, you might ask yourself what’s so different between cat food and kitten food. Yes, they might be from the same species, but food for adult cats doesn’t contain the same amount of nutrients as kitten food.
Considering they’re just like children who are still undergoing development, it’s only normal that they need extra nutrients to help them with the process. In other words, kittens might need twice or even more the number of certain vitamins and nutrients compared to adult cats.
Furthermore, the energy need for a kitten is not the same as that of an adult cat. A growing kitten’s energy requirement is higher than an adult cat. Also, the digestive system of a kitten is not fully developed and thus it cannot digest the same food as a fully grown cat.
For these reasons, kittens cannot eat adult cat food. You need to give them food specially made for kittens until they are old enough to live off adult cat food.
Wet Food or Dry Food?
Considering that its teeth are not yet fully developed, and chewing is a hard task, wet food will be the only alternative you have for at least the first months of the kitten’s life. Adult teeth will start appearing around the age of three months, so you must refrain from only giving dry food until they are older.
Even so, you must make sure you experiment with multiple types of textures until you find the best cat food for kittens to serve them. This will help ensure you don’t end up with a picky feline.
In addition, both wet food and dry food should be included to maintain a healthy and balanced diet while your kitty is still small.
How to Feed a Newborn Kitten?
If your kitten has been rejected by its mother, rescued or can’t drink milk from its mother due to any particular reason, you will have to feed it yourself. Unless you find a nursing feline to look after it, it’s your job to take care of the kitten and to ensure its safety and nutrition.
That being said, here is how to start feeding the little cat;
- Buy Milk
When they’re small, cats need the proper type of milk in order to get enough nutrition and to maintain their well-being. This means that you can’t feed kittens cow milk, for instance. If you do it, it might have negative impacts on the little one, and you’re surely not looking forward to that.
Fortunately, nowadays, you can find a cat milk replacement. You can find it at the vet’s office or in local pet stores, but online shops have it too. Coming in either a liquid or powder form, its preparation process is not different from the one used when making infant formula. All you have to do is use the instructions on the package, and you’ll successfully prepare the milk. If you do not have access to kitten formula, you can find some recipes on how to make an emergency kitten formula on the internet.
- Use Proper Equipment
Your kitten is like an infant, which means it won’t be able to take care of itself until it’s older. This includes alimentation too. This is why, if you end up in the possession of a newborn kitten, you should have your utensils ready in order to feed it.
As milk is the only acceptable thing until the baby cat is at least 1 month of age, you will need a Catac bottle and teat set. The bottle has a long and narrow teat with an open end, which can fit inside the tiny mouth of the feline. It’s a way to make it feel like it’s being fed by its mother.
Keep in mind that the open end allows you to place a finger on it in case the milk flow is too strong, so you’re not endangering your pet.
In case you do not have a bottle in hand, you can feed the kitten with a syringe until you get a bottle.
- Make a Schedule
When you consider kitten care, one of the first questions that come to mind is how often should you feed a kitten. If there’s one thing that you should keep in mind, it’s the fact that while the kitten is still small, it will have to be fed more frequently. Basically, their stomach is small and can only take a smaller amount of food. This means the kitten will eliminate the food more quickly as well. As a result, the kitten will get hungry much easier and that’s why someone needs to be there at all times in case hunger strikes.
Therefore, ensure that you have the possibility to feed your kitten whenever you should until it’s old enough to eat solids.
- Feed the Kitten Properly
When it’s time to feed your kitten, it’s essential to sit comfortably in a chair and have a towel on your lap. The cat needs to sit just like it would if its mother would feed it – with its head pointing forward while resting on its stomach and keeping its feet down.
Your pet might not realize what you’re trying to do at first, which is why it’s important to get a drip of milk at the end of the teat or syringe. Cats have a very strong sense of smell, so the kitty will surely smell the delicious treat awaiting it.
If you’re using a syringe instead of a teat, you should gently push the plunger so some amount of milk is released into its mouth. Be gentle, you don’t want to drown the little cat after all, do you?
In addition, keep in mind that you should never hold the kitten on its back like a human baby – it might be dangerous.
- Introduce Solids
Once your kitten reaches the age of one month, you can start to slowly introduce solid foods in its diet. That doesn’t mean you should completely put the milk away, but rather use a combination of dry food and milk, as already mentioned.
You can do this by placing a small amount of solid food in its dish, and if it doesn’t seem very fond of it, you can add some tablespoons of milk to soften the food. Time will pass by, and you will be able to decrease the amount of milk, thus helping the cat switch to dry food.
How Much Do You Feed a Baby Kitten?
Cats might be a totally different species compared to us, but if you look carefully, baby cats are not different from human babies in certain aspects. When it comes to nutrition, it’s pretty much the same – they are both in need of special food that will make sure they will grow and develop just the right way.
If you’re the happy owner of a kitten, you’re the one in charge of its alimentation. Besides searching for the best cat food for kittens, you must also be aware of how many times it is right to feed them.
First of all, it’s important to understand that kittens develop the most over the course of their first year of life – that’s why nutrition is such an important aspect. If you want to know what schedule you need to follow, here is how you need to feed your kitten, depending on the age;
- First Month
As you probably know, kittens need to be fed milk from their mothers until they are able to eat more solid food. If the mother cat ignores the kitten and does not feed it enough milk due to various circumstances, you will need to use a bottle and feed the kitten yourself with a kitten milk replacer. It’s not so different compared to feeding an actual baby, is it?
If you need to feed the kitty yourself, make sure you give about 8ml of the liquid for like every ounce of the weight the little one has.
- One to Two Months
Now that a month has passed, your kitten should be able to eat something else besides milk. That doesn’t mean that you have to take the kitten milk replacer out of its diet altogether, but you could combine 3 parts of cat milk replacement with one part of dry kitten food. You should do this for the first week of the 2nd month of life.
Once you reach the second week, you can mix two parts of milk replacement with one part of dry food, and so on. The whole point of this thing is to reduce the amount of milk consumed by the kitty, and gradually make the transition towards dry food.
- Two to Three Months
When two months of the kitten’s life have passed, it’s ready to settle for other foods and not necessarily need milk anymore. However, regarding the amount, you should still be aware that the stomach is not fully developed. This means that it won’t be able to carry huge amounts of food.
After 8 weeks have passed, try to feed your cat at least four times daily. Make sure the amount you offer is about 1/3 to ¾ cup per feeding.
- Three to Six Months
Your kitty is much more grown than it used to be, so now it’s time to change things around a little bit. From three months to six months, you can feed your cat three times per day. The amount can be from 1/3 to 1 cup per feeding.
Concurrently, if wet food is what you have to serve, take the kitten’s weight into consideration and give 2/3 of a can for a kitten’s every pound.
- Six Months to Twelve Months
After half a year, another change can be implemented in the kitten’s alimentation. You need to know the weight of your cat, after which you can give it a half of a 3-ounce can of kitten food daily.
Can You Feed a Kitten Just Dry Food?
As much as you’d love to only feed your feline companion the best dry kitten food, it’s essential to understand the importance of proper nutrition. Usually, it’s not recommended to only feed your cat dry food.
Basically, when they’re very young, kittens don’t have their teeth fully developed. Consequently, chewing dry food will be a difficult task, and if that’s all you feed them, you aren’t exactly giving them a good time.
Furthermore, kittens need proper hydration and as mentioned before, dry kitten food does not have as much water in it as wet kitten food. Keep in mind that when they are very small, they are unable to care for themselves as an adult cat would. So, you’re the one in charge of the pet and you need to make sure the hydration level is maintained, so it doesn’t become dehydrated.
The Bottom Line
If you’re the one in charge of a small feline, you’re like its parent and you must make sure that it only gets the best kitten food. Feeding them high-quality food is essential for proper growth, as well as for maintaining their health. Finding the right food is not easy, but hopefully, my kitten food reviews have helped you in your attempts to find the best product.
Since your cat will grow and develop eventually, you might want to check my 10 best dry cat food reviews, as well.
Your kitten’s nutritional needs will change over time, you may also want to read my guide on the best cat food for older cats.