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How to Wean A Kitten

May 13th, 2005, 08:54 PM
Can anyone advise how to wean a kitten? My friend is having difficulty getting Iggy to wean off of Baby. She keeps babying him, she is not showing him how to use the litter box as well.
I have never had a kiten at 6 weeks, unsure how to get them to eat soft food.
Any advice appreciated.

May 13th, 2005, 09:04 PM
Weaning is a difficult time for a kitten. And Baby has probably become used to well, nursing and being "babied" and may be a little reluctant to give it up at first.

The first step is to place a little warmed formula into a small bowl or a saucer, or better yet, a jar lid. For some reason kittens do really well with the jar lid, perhaps it is just easier to manage. Wash the jar lid in hot, soapy water and rinse thoroughly. Dip your finger into the formula and get the kitten to lick it off your finger. Do this a few times, each time lowering your finger until it's at the level of the formula. The idea is to teach her to lap the formula from the bowl. Don't be discouraged if she doesn't catch on the first time. It sometimes takes a few times for a kitten to learn to eat from a bowl.

Once she is lapping formula from the bowl, you can gradually mix in a little wet kitten food. Do this by mashing a little canned food, add formula and mix thoroughly until you have a milkshake-like consistency. Gradually decrease the amount of formula and increase the amount of kitten food over a few days until he is eating just kitten food. You can also continue to give kitten glop in solid form, instead of liquid. Feed her small amounts about 5 times a day.

Continue offering formula in a bottle after she has first learned to lap from the bowl. Once you are confident that she is getting enough food by herself, withdraw the bottle feedings. During the weaning process, she may dip his paws or walk in his food. Although messy, this is a natural part of weaning and her way of exploring this new food. You can lay newspaper under and around her bowl to make cleaning up easier. This is another reason a jar lid comes in handy. She can't really walk in to the whole thing and rarely do the lids tip over.

Don't forget to have fresh water in a bowl alongside the food for her to drink. If he is eating but not drinking water, you can gently give her 5cc of water with a feeding syringe, a few times a day until she begins drinking by herself. Give this water slowly. Do not force it down her throat quickly!!

Good luck!~

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