4-week old kitten won't latch on to bottle, help!

princess7807

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I have a 4-week old foster that I picked up from the shelter this morning. They told me he had some trouble latching at times but said it should be okay. Well.. I got him to latch once or twice, but other than that I haven't had much luck. I've been syringe feeding him but I'm struggling to feed the proper amount because after a while he starts spitting it out. He's lost some weight (a few grams) as well. He seems to be acting fine otherwise; very active, walking around, peeing and pooping normally. Should I be concerned?? Is it possible that he's just nervous about being in a new environment and will start eating more once he gets comfortable here? This is my first bottle baby, so any and all advice would be appreciated!
 

Sarthur2

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A four-week-old kitten needs feeding every 4 hours. If he’s spitting it out then he’s had his fill. He’ll hopefully be fine once he acclimates to you and his new environment.

Are you feeding the same formula he was on at the shelter? Have you tried using Miracle Nipples?
 

StefanZ

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If he gets enough or not, you see it if he adds nicely every day, or not.

IF he do adds every day, he has almost too much, and its OK he spits out what he doesnt need more. But if he doesnt add; you do have problems... And must try to change something...
 
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princess7807

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How often are you syringe feeding? perhaps a ltttle but often would work??
Every 3-4 hours. I tried doing smaller amounts more often but he didn't seem interested in the food at all, whereas he usually seems interested but just can't or won't latch.
 
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princess7807

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A four-week-old kitten needs feeding every 4 hours. If he’s spitting it out then he’s had his fill. He’ll hopefully be fine once he acclimates to you and his new environment.

Are you feeding the same formula he was on at the shelter? Have you tried using Miracle Nipples?
Yes I'm using the formula provided by the shelter. He definitely responds better to the miracle nipple, but still won't latch. At this point all he does it try to chew on the nipples, so I'm wondering if I should start weaning? I noticed today that his premolars have started emerging as well.
 
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princess7807

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If he gets enough or not, you see it if he adds nicely every day, or not.

IF he do adds every day, he has almost too much, and its OK he spits out what he doesnt need more. But if he doesnt add; you do have problems... And must try to change something...
His weight remained stable for a day or so (not losing, not gaining), but today he's lost a bit of weight. I called the animal shelter for advice and they haven't called me back yet so I'm getting kind of nervous.
 

StefanZ

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Yes I'm using the formula provided by the shelter. He definitely responds better to the miracle nipple, but still won't latch. At this point all he does it try to chew on the nipples, so I'm wondering if I should start weaning? I noticed today that his premolars have started emerging as well.
You can try and change the food, ie begin with weaning. As long as he eats, its fine... Healthwise, he wont be harmed by eating other food than kmr or goats milk, as long its something suitable...

Btw, you could try with goats milk; he perhaps prefers that taste... This either instead of kmr, or as supplement to other food.
 

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Use the syringe with no nipple to feed. The kitten is teething and uncomfortable and chews the nipple because it feels good. Dip a corner of a soft cloth in the formula and give him the corner to suckle on.

Try Gerber turkey or chicken meat baby food on your finger to see if he will lick it. You can smear some on his gums to get him to taste it. He should be ready to wean soon.
 
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princess7807

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Use the syringe with no nipple to feed. The kitten is teething and uncomfortable and chews the nipple because it feels good. Dip a corner of a soft cloth in the formula and give him the corner to suckle on.

Try Gerber turkey or chicken meat baby food on your finger to see if he will lick it. You can smear some on his gums to get him to taste it. He should be ready to wean soon.
I haven't had much luck with the syringe with no nipple, but I finally got him to latch!! I honestly don't know why or how it happened, but he's been latching regularly. It's still a struggle to get him to eat a full meal though. I'm offering wet food or baby food regularly, though he just seems confused by it, even when I put some on his gums or tongue. Supplementing with nutri-cal at the moment so he can start gaining weight, but hopefully he'll be ready for wet food soon.
 
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