How long can a newborn kitten go without eating? Due to the weak immune system, metabolism, and quick dehydration issues, a newborn kitten can survive only 5-7 hours without eating.
Newborn kitten mother milk every 2-3 hours to maintain the digestive system. If the kitten starves for an hour, the metabolic system collapses quickly and the body can’t cope with the temperature. Within a few hours, these issues can lead to the risk of death. So, maintaining a proper feeding pattern is necessary to give kittens enough nutrients for good growth.
Want to know more about kitten feeding patterns? Scroll through for a proper feeding guide to keep kittens safe and healthy.
How Long Can A Newborn Kitten Go Without Eating
A newborn kitten has a poor digestive system and can’t digest lots of food at once. As a result, they require continuous feeding every 2-3 hours until two weeks of age to survive. Besides, the body can’t cope with the temperature, which increases the risk of fatal issues like dehydration and hypothermia.
On top of that, the weak immune system can’t deal with starvation for more than 3 to 4 hours. If the newborn kitten starves for a few hours, the metabolism system starts to collapse, which can lead to the risk of death. Hence, always feed the newborn kitten every 2-3 hours to ensure proper nutrients for better growth.
Does A Newborn Kitten Require Feeding At Night?
Yes, according to AnimalFate, a newborn kitten requires feeding at night for 1-2 weeks.
Newborn kittens require continuous feeding every 2-3 hours to survive and maintain proper growth. Because of the craving, kittens wake up during sleep and ask for food. If the mother cat isn’t around, you must feed the kitten in the middle of the night.
Once the kitten becomes hungry, the metabolism starts to collapse quickly. As a result, kittens can’t sleep properly, which increases the health risk. Even starvation for hours at night can lead to death. Though it is painful to wake up during sleep, feed the newborn kittens at night to keep them healthy.
How Can I Feed A Newborn Kitten?
For feeding the newborn kitten, try the bottle-fed method using the kitten milk replacer formula. First, prepare the formula at a slightly high temperature to keep the food warm for kittens. But avoid overheating and check the warmth by placing 2-3 drops on the wrist.
Then, wash the bottle before pouring the kittens’ food formula. WebMD suggests cleaning hands and accessories properly to prevent the spread of gems. Next, use a towel to hold the kitten and lay it on the stomach. After that, gently hold the bottle and push it a little so that the nipple can ensure milk flow.
But don’t force the kitten once they feel uncomfortable while feeding. If you force or push for feeding, it may cause choking. If you face any issues, it is wise to seek help from the vet quickly.
How Much Should I Feed My Kitten?
The feeding patterns and amount varies depending on the age, weight, and breed. Let’s dig into these factors in detail.
Newborn kittens require a small quantity of food but continuous feeding every 2-3 hours. For the first 2 to 3 weeks, kittens only consume liquid food and can’t handle solid food. At the age of 3 or 4 weeks, you can start giving solid food to the kittens.
Moreover, it is better to feed both wet and dry food for quick growth. Once the kitten becomes four weeks old, feed it every 5 to 6 hours, but adequate to meet the hunger and energy demands.
If the kitten is healthy, don’t worry about the feeding pattern. In fact, the regular feeding pattern can keep the healthy one active. However, weak kitten requires intensive care and proper feeding to prevent health risk. It is better to feed weak kittens every 1-2 hours to ensure healthy growth.
Few cat breed requires more food to meet the requirement of high metabolism. If you find a kitten of the sphynx breed, it requires an average of 2-3 meals more than other breeds.
What To Do If You Find a Kitten Alone
Kittens get lost while momma cat is going out to find food. Let’s take a few steps to care for a lost kitten.
Look For Momma Cat
If you find a lost kitten, wait for the momma cat or try to locate her. But keep the kitten in a safe place and wait for the mother. If she roams nearby, the momma cat will return for the kitten.
Feed The Kitten
If the momma cat doesn’t return for 1-2 hours, take the responsibility to provide food. Try to manage the kitten milk replacer formula from a nearby store and prepare it properly. If you face any issues while feeding, it is wise to seek help from the vet quickly.
Keep Kitten Warm
The kitten’s body can’t cope with the temperature, which increases the risk of dehydration and hypothermia. As per 21cats, use a heating pad or warm towel to keep the kitten warm. Besides, use a warm cloth to clean them properly to avoid bacterial infections.
A newborn kitten can get sick quickly and worsen within a few hours. After providing food and shelter, monitor the response towards food and other activities. Even watch or track the kittens until they become an adult. If you inspect any changes or weaknesses, call the vet for proper care for the kittens.
Newborn kitten can survive only 5-7 hours without eating because of the weak immune system and quick dehydration. For the first 1-2 weeks, newborn kitten requires feeding even at night.
If you find a lost kitten, feed the kitten milk replacer formula by bottle-fed method. It is better to give only liquid food for 2 to 3 weeks and try solid food after 4 weeks. So, maintain the proper feeding pattern of kittens to ensure healthy growth!