How to Bottle Feeding Kittens

When a kitten is taken away from its mother cat or when you find an orphaned kitten of a very young age, then more times than not, it cannot simply lap up kitten formula or cat milk from a bowl. Bottle feeding kittens is an option to consider in order for them to eat and get the proper nutrition they need to grow into healthy adult cats. Here are some tips and guidelines you need to follow for a safer and easier bottle-feeding experience.

Note that bottle-feeding kittens take up a lot of time, so if you have a small kitten at home, you cannot leave it home alone when you go out to work or school. Always make sure that you can leave the kitten with someone else, for very young kittens need to be bottle-fed for 10-20 minutes numerous times in a single day.

So, before actually giving your kitten the bottle, remember to first sterilize both the kitten’s bottle and the bottle’s nipple. This can be done by boiling the supplies in water for around five minutes. Let this cool down completely before use.

Now it comes to making the kitten’s formula. Remember that a cat’s milk is always the best thing to give to young kittens. If you cannot obtain this from a local animal shelter or pet store, however, then kitten replacement formula is always the next best choice. Never give your kitten cow’s milk. Mix the formula according to the pack’s specifications and heat this mixture up. After heating, check the temperature of the liquid by squirting a few drops onto your wrist to make sure it is warm enough but not too hot.

Remember never to overfeed or underfeed your kitten. Most kittens need around 32cc of kitten formula or milk every day. You should divide this into 9-12 feedings, which is more or less every 2 hours.

Hold the bottle upside down. Note that the kitten formula should not trickle out of the nipple freely. The milk should only start coming out once a little pressure is applied.

Sit down comfortably and take your kitten into your lap with its belly facing down. This is the position the kitten would be taking up if it were nursing from its mother. Now, hold the bottle’s nipple close to the kitten. Press down on the bottle gently to allow a tiny trickle of formula to exit the nipple, to encourage the kitten. Your pet should take to this very easily.

If your kitten seems to have trouble, then try gently inserting the nipple into its mouth. If difficulties persist, then maybe you should try feeding your kitten through the means of a catheter instead. This is a tube that you insert into your kitten’s mouth until it reaches its stomach. Now you can inject kitten formula right into the tube to feed your pet.

It is a good idea to try burping your kitten after every meal. You can do this in two ways. First, simply hold the kitten with one hand under its abdomen while your other hand starts gently patting its back. This works in most cases and your kitten will burp after a few attempts. If this doesn’t work, then the second method should be applied. Here, you mimic what the mother cat would do when trying to burp its baby, which is licking its anus with her rough tongue. You can simulate this by using a warm, damp washcloth (preferably a little rough) and gently massaging your kitten’s genital regions.

There you have it. You now know how to bottle feed your kitten.