Taking care of a kitten is like caring for a human baby. They need extra care, as they can’t take their food for their own. Kitten age and size are the primary factors that affect how much food does a kitten need.
Future development depends on how much we are feeding them according to their age. Whether the food contains all the ingredients that are needed for the balanced growth of the kitten or not. As a new kitten owner may be questioned in mind “How much food does a kitten need?” It’s a complicated job to feed a kitten as many cautions are needed to be taken.
Should have proper knowledge about the food that should be feed to your kitten. As an experienced owner of few kittens, I can give some advice to a new owner of a kitten. It is a matter of happiness that, you getting these pieces of information easily.
Feeding Your Kitten in Stages (Age-wise Food Chart)
Find out your kitty’s age. The different time period has different requirements. Get a chart for it. A weekly basis kitten food chart is given below.
Kitten Food Chart
|Kitten Age||Kitten Feeding Guidelines|
|0-4 weeks||If possible, breast milk from mommy cat is best for kittens. Mix kitten milk and dry kitten food in 3:1 ratio for the first week.|
|4-8 weeks||The following week, mix kitten milk and dry food in 2:1 ratio. Gradually liquid content is reduced. At the last stage give them ¼ to 1/3 cup of food in each serving.|
|2 to 3 months||Feed them 1/3 to ¾ cup per serving for at least four times per day. Actually, they need more food at this stage of development. But their stomach is still growing and can’t have much food they need. So, feed them time to time but not in excess at the same time.|
|3 to 6 months||In case of dry food, feed them 1/3 to 1 cup of kitten food per serving 3 times per day. For wet canned food, give 2/3 of a 3-ounce canned food for every pound of its body weight on daily basis.|
|6 to 12 months||Feed ½ to 3-ounce of canned kitten food for every pound of body weight per day.|
What Nutrients Do Kittens Need In Their Cat Food?
The first year of every mammal is very important as they grow very Swift in this time period. Kittens grow nearly double in a few weeks after their birth. That’s why they need a lot of energy for their development. They can’t get enough energy from just one serving per day.
Adult cats need their meal twice in a day. But kittens need three to four times in a day. So, it is a very important responsibility for their owners to feed them time to time. Kittens need more minerals, proteins, vitamins, amino acids to build up their tissue especially muscles and nervous systems.
Try this: How Much Food Does a Cat Need Daily?
The main function of protein is to build up the structure of their body. Kittens need more protein and the amount is about 30% about from normal cats. Some owners give their kittens the same food as cats but this is not recommended. They both have different requirements to follow. So, it is wise to choose the best food for your kitten.
Should a Kitten Take Wet or Dry Food?
It is difficult for kittens to break down hard kibbles with their little teeth. A little amount of water contains in kibbles. So, it is hard to swallow it. Their hydration needs are not fulfilled with it. If no alternative is found, make kibbles hydrated or feed it water after meal.
Canned wet food works better in this situation. They also have nutrients in dense and taste better. But they are expensive. Some owners combine them to lower the cost which is helpful too. This also balances nutrition requirements. Feed the kitten four times a day if wet canned food is served. But in case of combined food, feed them twice.
Do Different Cat Breeds Need Different Food?
There are many varieties of cats breed. The different breed has different requirements. It’s difficult to determine the right requirement of food for them. A vet can help in this. Consult with your vet for the best suggestion or you can take it to an animal hospital.
They can also check the vital condition and whether it is sick or not.
What Varieties of Food Kitty Needs?
Cats are picky eaters. Make them used to have varieties of food taste. They should practice this an earlier age. Otherwise, they won’t do it at an older age. If they get the same food over and over, then they will only get one flavor and a particular type of nutrition.
It is better to feed varieties of food by turns. Don’t mix old and new food in a bowl. Give them on different plates. They will eat old one along with new. After some time stop giving it the old one. Do it often. Not always. Rapid change in food may lead to stomach upset. Kitten may starve by this.
How Often To Feed Kittens
Kittens need time to time feeding. But when they get older they generally eat two times per day. Feeding frequently will help those that have smaller stomachs. This helps kittens to grow faster.
Kittens that play a lot, get hungry easily as they lose energy fast. Frequent eating is the best solution for this.
Amount of Treat They Should Have
Kittens get happy when they get treated. So, you should give it some treat if it does some good. But what should be the amount? It is good to give it treat not more than ten percent of its calorie needs.
What Food Should I Avoid Feeding My Kitten?
- Raw meat and liver contain harmful bacteria and parasites. Cooked or grilled meat is better.
- Raw eggs have Salmonella that decreases the ability to absorb vitamin B which leads to skin and hair coat problems.
- Raw fish sometimes causes loss of appetite.
- Raw milk has many harmful bacteria in it. They can cause diarrhea as some cat may not have the enzymes that break down milk into simple food.
- Garlic, onion, chocolate, grapes are toxic to some kittens and cats.
Learn more: Harmful Foods For Cats
Final Verdicts on Feeding Newborn Kittens
Knowing how much food does a kitten need to ensure physical development. It is very important to grow as a healthy cat. Newborn kittens can get all of their nutrition from their mother. This will continue until they gradually transition to eat solid foods.
From four weeks, newborn kittens can eat solid foods. By focusing on good nutrition for a newborn cat, it will become a healthy and strong cat.
Dr. John Morris, DVM is a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine who has seven years of experience in feline medicine, dermatology, and behavior. He also enjoys volunteering at a local NGO that supports literacy programs for children and adults. In his free time, he enjoys fostering kittens, traveling, vegan cooking, hiking, and biking. Learn more about Justin here.