How to Care for Orphaned Kittens?


How to Care for Orphaned Kittens?

Sometimes, we might find a litter of newborn kittens left, wondering what to do and how to care for orphaned kittens. We may lose precious time thinking what we should or should not do. Namely, kittens develop quickly and the first few weeks are crucial. When kittens are left with their mother, the situation is far better. However, when kittens are left to themselves, our role is a role of surrogate mother. Our actions depend on the kitten’s age. Kittens who still have umbilical cord are not older than three days. Blind kittens are younger than ten days, while kittens who begin to groom themselves are between two and three weeks old. Kittens who learned to play are already a month old. According to feline experts, the first thing to check is the warmth of kittens. We need to check room temperature and warm up the chilled kitten. Feline experts advise us wrapping the kitten in a towel and hold him until the temperature becomes normal (between 95 and 99F). To learn more about how to care for orphaned kittens, the article “What to Do (and NOT Do) If You Find a Newborn Kitten” gives us the following suggestion.

How to Care for Orphaned Kittens?

Prepare for bottle-feeding and proper care before you take the kittens off the street.
If you feel you must take the kittens in, wrap the carrier or container you will transport them in in a towel for warmth, but make sure you leave air holes uncovered so the kittens won’t suffocate.
Check to see if the kittens are warm. This is more important than feeding. Never feed a cold kitten! If the kittens are cold, you will need to warm them up slowly. You can tell a kitten is cold if the pads of his feet and/or ears feel cool or cold. Put your finger in the kitten’s mouth. If it feels cold, then the kitten’s temperature is too low. This is life-threatening and must be dealt with immediately. Warm up the kitten slowly over 20 minutes by wrapping him in a towel or baby blanket, holding him close to your body, and continually rubbing him with your warm hands.
Determine the age of the kittens by comparing them to the photos and descriptions on the How Old Is That Kitten? Kitten Progression: At-a-Glance page on the Alley Cat Allies website, or the Boutique Kittens website (Note: we do not advocate breeding or buying kittens; these kitten development photos just happen to be particularly descriptive.).

When thinking about how to care for orphaned kittens, the most important thing is to avoid giving a cow’s milk. Not only that cow’s milk is not nourishing for young kittens, but it also might show as fatal. Namely, kittens who are fed with this milk may get parasites and diarrhea that can further lead to dehydration. For that reason, the best option is to feed young kittens with specially developed milk formula for kittens that we can buy in pet stores. In any case, to properly care for orphaned kittens we should think in terms warmth, nourishment, elimination, and emotional bonding.

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