How far along is my cat?

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13raynerl

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Fab thank you guys - she is fine in herself, eating, sleeping, nursing and going to the toilet fine so I assume she just likes it in there!
 
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13raynerl

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Hi guys,

I have 3 nearly 5 week old kittens that I am in the process of trying to wean and litter train with no such luck. 1 of the kittens is eating normal food which is fantastic but the other 2 aren’t interested. They all also haven’t gone to the toilet in the litter once - they scrape around for a minute and then just walk off. Is this normal and does anyone have any advice on how to wean the other 2 kittens and get them to go to the toilet in the litter.
 

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:wave3: I am sure that you will get the advice that you are after but until then, I would like to offer you encouragement. The longer that kittens nurse, the less likely they are to do "woolsucking" as adults. Even after they transition to gruel, I like to offer the bottle although I have to be especially careful because they bite the nipple. Since littermates can be conceived at different times, there can be a variation in development stages not to mention precociousness.
For box training, it sometimes helps to put a small amount of used litter (from your adult cat) in a corner of the kittens' potty box. I also take their paws and help them scoop a spot then sit them on the spot - sometimes they will use the toilet then. Also, from the get-go, I establish a routine of "potty- then eat- then potty with cleaning". It is during the after meal potty that I show them how to use the box. A quick wipe with a warm, moist pad of unscented toilet tissue or large cotton oval (for cosemetics) afterwards helps train them to be a meticulous grooming adult cat.
Thank you so much for giving those little ones a chance at a great life! My little crew is a few weeks younger than yours so I will be following your thread with eagerness. My kittens are sleeping well through the night but during 4-5 am bottle feedings on a chilly mountain morning, weaning seems light years away!
By the way, I know all of us TCSers would love to see pictures! My kids (actually, animal control's kids, but I consider myself auntie/grandma) are getting fully opened eyes! 20230416_123154.jpg
 
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13raynerl

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thank you so much! I have heard it’s not necessarily a bad thing for them to feed from mum for longer but it’s so frustrating when you just want them to learn! I’ve been trying to get into a routine better with them so maybe I’ll give that more of a push to help them. They’re getting the scratching of the litter, just not that they actually need to wee in the hole they made haha. Your kitten is gorgeous, reminds me of one of mine actually! Pictures below - I’ll make sure to keep updating but keep the advice coming if you have any 😊
 

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Sarthur2

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Not quite five weeks old is too young to wean. They will transition to soft wet pates in the next 2-3 weeks and still nurse mom. Also make dry kitten kibble available. They will learn to eat this too.

Continue putting them in a kitten-sized litter box several times a day, particularly before and after meals. Mom is probably still cleaning them, but will stop when they begin eating solids and have solid poops.

Here is a helpful video:


1 13raynerl
 
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13raynerl

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Thank you very much!
Also wondering if someone can help. Mum cat currently has diarrhoea (not AWFUL but runny). She’s eating and drinking fine, going to the toilet fine and seems perfectly normal, just the loose stool. Is this normal? One of her kittens is now eating some wet food so not sure if it’s just her eating the kittens stool that isn’t just milk that may be affecting her?
 

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What is mom eating? How long has her stool been runny? Has her diet changed recently?

Try mixing the powder from a probiotic capsule into her wet food once a day.

If things don’t clear up from the probiotics, she may need a round of metronidazole. It treats gut parasites as well as gut bacterial infections.
 

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Five weeks is awfully young for either weaning or litter box training. I've found with both kittens nursing from mom and bottle feeding foster kittens that most of them were not fully weaned until 7 or 8 weeks.

For litter box training I put a shallow pan with non-clumping litter next to the big cats' regular litter box. It was so cute when one kitten watched mom do her business in the big box, then baby hopped into her little pan and did her own business.
 
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13raynerl

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What is mom eating? How long has her stool been runny? Has her diet changed recently?

Try mixing the powder from a probiotic capsule into her wet food once a day.

If things don’t clear up from the probiotics, she may need a round of metronidazole. It treats gut parasites as well as gut bacterial infections.
She’s eating both dry and wet food, it’s only been around 2 days and her diet has stayed the same but she has eaten a bit of the kittens food we put out which is different to hers. She went this morning and seems normal so maybe it was a one off!
Also, it’s interesting you all say it’s very early to wean and litter train at 5 weeks as everything I read online says 3-4 weeks to start. However, I’m going to take what you all say on board and just let nature take its course - they will soon learn from momma! Thanks :)
 

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Kittens need to have their baby teeth to begin weaning. These are cut around 4 weeks.
 
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13raynerl

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Yes their baby teeth are through, have been for about a week now 😊
 
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13raynerl

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Hi all,

so we have had a huge nightmare - our mother cat has managed to escape the house and is in heat. Her kittens are currently 6 weeks old and she is out mating. Will she come back to the kittens or are they too old for her to care?
 

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They aren't too old. You'll likely need to bottle feed.
My mum had this happen with a foster and she came back a few weeks later. She was spayed right away upon return to prevent a new litter. She was unable to reunite with her kittens.
 

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Hi. She may or may not come back and do any more with the kittens. It would be nice if she did, as these kittens still need some 'cat training/lesson in manners'. If she does come back, you can see how she reacts to the kittens and go from there. If she seems disinterested or antagonistic to them, block her access to them.

I presume they are already eating some kitten food? Hopefully, yes. You can supplement it with KMR. You might want to take a look at the feeding section of this site. Kitten Care - Home — Kitten Lady
 
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13raynerl

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Thank you guys - they are eating and litter trained so they will survive with little issues but of course this can create problems in their future. She’s been out a couple of hours now so fingers crossed she comes back. I have an appointment Tuesday to get her spayed too so this is a nightmare!
 
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13raynerl

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Also if she does become pregnant - will they essentially “abort” the babies when spaying? This won’t prevent her being able to get spayed will it?
 

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Also if she does become pregnant - will they essentially “abort” the babies when spaying? This won’t prevent her being able to get spayed will it?
If she just got pregnant, many vets will spay when the pregnancy is that early on; and yes, it essentially aborts the fetuses. Some vets won't spay if a cat is pregnant, so you will need to call and talk to your vet about the options and potential outcomes.
 
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