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Suckling kittens

March 7th, 2008, 05:59 PM
Hi, i was just wondering if any of you had this situation... my 9 month old kitten Tonali, who i rescued at approx 3 weeks old still likes to suckle on my ear on a daily basis, Tonali is female, and likes to suckle my ears, specifically my right one and this is the preferred one, she cant seem to get a good grip of the left one. Funny fact, i dont have pierced ears. Tonali suckles only me. Suckling period of time is usually 12 to 15 minutes, tho she sometimes have very short episodes of under 4 minutes. Suckling always involves purring and kneading . I accepted and welcomed it as token of love and trust from the little being i rescued. Tonali and I have our 'suckling position': me laying on my back with no pillow, her laying on her left side, kneading and purring along as she suckles, she also alternates this position with the one where she lays flat on her belly, both legs spread around my abdomen. I always place my left hand on her rear and the right hand on her head/shoulderblades. At first, this was such that i held the whole kitten warm, now she has grown...Tonali is well adjusted, tho smaller in size as she should be according to growth charts. Tonali was fed milk replacement formula until 3 months old, as well as high grade kitten food, which she will keep eating until at least 1 year of age. Tonali is well adapted and shows no signs of behaviour problems. Tonali is a picky eater and will not have canned food or cat treats of any kind, nor does she eat sardines or tuna. I also am an advocate of feeding only dry food for teeth/gum health.
Just wondering how common this is and if anyone has any feedback ...

March 7th, 2008, 06:33 PM
Hi there--

Im not an expert but Im thinking that the ear sucking is pretty normal. Its a comfort thing for your kitty and she may continue doing it for a long time.

On a side note though after joining this forum Ive learned that the opposite is true with feeding dry food. I too still feed my cats dry food (Welness Core) but they get 2 cans of soft a day (variety mostly Welness also) because in fact canned food is better for them because they have no drive for thirst, if that makes sense. Dry food for the most part also is very processed too and may not be the best choice to be feed as the main sorce. I like you always though dry was better for their teeth but that is untrue also. As someone said to me here "your dentist doesnt tell you to eat cookies and pretzels to keep your teeth in good shape" same applies to cats.

Have fun with your little muffin, they are kittens for such a short period of time!!!


Amy P
March 7th, 2008, 06:37 PM
I rescued kittens a while back whose mother had been hit by a car and they all did the same thing to me...except they preferred my eyelids for some reason, they actually left little itty bitty hickies on my eyelids!!! :rolleyes::laughing::laughing:....My sister in laws cat who is about 10 still suckles her "baby bear" they got for her when they first rescued her, she still lays on it's belly kneading and purring and suckling the bear...I think this is their way of letting you know the are content. I think your baby fuzzy buns is just telling you how much she loves you! :lovestruck: Any pics to show? :D

March 7th, 2008, 10:00 PM
My mothers cat did this with me for about the first year, she would suckle my cheek or my stuffed puppy's ears at night. I had to stop sleeping with my puppy... but at 22 I guess it was time! :rolleyes:

March 7th, 2008, 10:50 PM
i would love to post pics of Tonali, but i am still trying to figure out how... not that computer savvy yet!!!

Deda Brada
March 8th, 2008, 12:48 AM
As someone said to me here "your dentist doesnt tell you to eat cookies and pretzels to keep your teeth in good shape" same applies to cats.

I think your dentist is much happier when you don't have good teeth!

If you really want your cat has healthy teeth, then feed raw meat, because it can't paste to her teeth. There's a question could she live that way, without many important supplements needed for her general health. Then, we've got to compromise, like we do in every aspect of our lives.

March 9th, 2008, 11:17 AM
I agree with Deda, raw is best, but is hard to change kitties eating habits, second best is high quality canned.

As for the sucking, it is a calming action that cats who have been taken from their mommas at too early of an age continue to do. My Snowball did this until he was about 5 years old, he was barely 6 wks old when we got him from the HS.

March 9th, 2008, 12:43 PM
i would love to post pics of Tonali, but i am still trying to figure out how... not that computer savvy yet!!!

Click on "Reply" and type in your message. Scroll down to "Additional Options" and click on "Manage Attachments" then follow instructions to upload from your computer. :)

Looking forward to your pics. :goodvibes:

May 11th, 2008, 09:46 PM
Hi everyone,
Just letting you know that i have posted picture slideshow of my cat Cookie/kitten Tonali on utube. You can see them at "cstmontreal" on said website.
Happy viewing!

PS: The grey tabby kitten is Bitsy, a kitten my son rescued when she was 2 days old, in Guatemala, where we lived, doing humanitarian work.


May 12th, 2008, 10:59 AM
Just like humans, animals have their funny habits. My half-siamese waits until I am sitting up and watching T.V. she comes up and always sits on my right shoulder. She also sleeps on my pillow during the day and follows me around when she is not sleeping. We are "attached at the hip" and I have a nick-name for her "pest". She only does this with me. My foster cat sits on the sofa and makes a strange tent with the drape, wrapping it around him. It really is hilarious! Another cat that I had many years ago used to wiggle her bum and then run and attack feet. As for food I only feed them what the vet recommends. My tortie is on a diet and gets Hill's Prescription diet W/D, half -siamese is a very picky eater and only likes Hill's Nature's best and I also give them Hill's dental care. My foster likes everything.