How old do you think this pregnant stray is?

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Kareywood

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Also, her kittens, who were born 11 days ago, are steadily gaining weight each day but the smallest is 7.875 ounces and the biggest is 9.25 ounces. Is such a big range normal? Thanks!
 

StanAndAlf

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Hard to say, but I think under 10 months but more than 4 months.

I don't think that is too large of a difference between kittens, the first born is often quite a bit larger than the rest of the litter, and the runt is of course smaller. As long as they are healthy, feeding well and gaining weight.

Some photos would be nice... ;)
 

Sarthur2

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Oh my goodness, mom is still a kitten herself, poor thing. Thank you for taking her in. She is probably only 7-8 months old herself now; perhaps 5-6 months when she got pregnant.

How many kittens are there? Are they nursing well? Is mom eating tons of kitten wet and dry food? She needs it for nursing, plus she herself is still growing up.

Yes, kittens can be a couple ounces apart in weight. Males tend to be heftier than females, and also the kittens who claim the best nipples tend to eat the most and gain the fastest.

The kittens should weigh about 8 ounces at 14 days, so they are doing well. Then it’s 12 ounces at 3 weeks and about 16 ounces at 4 weeks.

Do you plan to keep mom or any kittens? Mom will need to be spayed when her kittens wean.
 
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Kareywood

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Thanks for replying!

Mom Nyxie is eating a lot of both dry and wet canned cat food. She had a litter of 4 kittens-when they were born, she didn’t seem to know what to do with them and one (now the smallest) was sprawled limply by itself away from mom and the others. I put them all in a box on a blanket and that seemed to jog Nyxie into action. She laid down beside them in the box and has been nursing them and licking them devotedly since then!

We’ve decided to keep the mom and one of the kittens (no idea how to choose!). A local cat rescue group will help us spay/neuter all of the kittens and adopt 3 of them out. We will of course get the mom and the baby we keep altered-this has been quite an experience! I’ve never seen a litter of newborn kittens/puppies/any animal before! Our pets have always been spayed or neutered...

I figured she was young but wasn’t sure how young. Our vet suggested maybe 9 months old about a month after the pic was taken. She was clean, friendly, no fleas or internal parasites but had ear mites; she is feline leukemia negative. We thought for sure someone would claim her when we posted about a lost kitten but no one did...
 

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Sarthur2

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She looks much younger than 9 months in the picture. Happy to hear all 4 kittens are doing well and that you plan to work with a shelter.

Wait to see how the kittens’ personalities develop, but I always suggest keeping the kitten that mom favors the most. I also believe kittens do better in pairs, but because mom is so young herself she’ll probably play with her kitten.

Although shelters like to take kittens at 8 weeks, it’s best if they stay with mom for 12 weeks.
 
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Kareywood

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They fortunately will not go to a shelter. They will be placed in foster homes by the rescue group until they are adopted! I thought she seemed younger than 8 months in the pic too-and she was wayyyyy more playful and mischievous than the 7 and a half month old kitten we adopted back in 2003 (who passed away in March of this year)
 

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They will be placed in foster homes by the rescue group until they are adopted!
Is it possible for them to stay with you (and their mom) until they're adopted? Basically, can you be the foster home? That would be better for their development. Kittens who stay with their mom longer are better adjusted in general.
 

cataholic07

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Does she have all her adult teeth? She looks quite young.7-8 months possibly. Very possible she got pregnant at 4 months old.
 
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Kareywood

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About a month after the first pic was taken, our vet said all of Nyxie’s adult teeth were in. So maybe she was 9 or 10 months old a month after the pic was taken.

we will keep the kittens until they are 8 weeks old at least. We can’t really keep them until they are adopted. I don’t know how long that will take and my cat who will be 15 years old next month was not pleased when Nyxie first arrived. They’ve largely made peace with each other ( Zax still hisses on rare occasions at Nyxie) but I don’t want him to get stressed about having 4 kittens here for several months.

Not to mention that the longer the kittens are here, the more I fall in love with them!
 
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Kareywood

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Mama cat is starting to spend more and more time away from her kitties. is that normal for a mama cat with 19 day old kittens? Should I not be letting her out to the rest of the house yet? She really wants to be with us really badly. Thanks!
 

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Nyxie is doing a fine job for being so young, just a baby herself 💖😍 it is normal for her to go about at this point. Just be uber-cautious that she doesn't go outside - her instincts to hunt & provide will be getting stronger as her babies get closer to weaning. Also,.she could go into heat, even while nursing. I am so glad your dog spearheaded a search & rescue - what an awesome pup! Is he a cattle dog?
 

Sarthur2

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It’s okay if she takes breaks. Moms need them! The kittens no longer need to nurse every hour. Just make sure she spends adequate time with her kittens.
 
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Kareywood

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Thanks, catsknowme and sarthur2!

Nyxie is strictly an indoor cat. We’ve never let our cats roam free. Sometimes we set up a big cat tent on our deck but it’s covered so they can’t get out. Or we will walk them on leash and harness (Which we plan on teaching Nyxie).

we are trying to make sure she spends plenty of time with the babies still. They are each gaining anywhere from .375 to 1.0 ounces per day so I guess everyone’s satisfied!

our dog is a smooth collie : )
he is very gentle around the kittens and mama!

9676022A-64D4-4117-85F8-1F2CC9280E72.jpeg
 

catsknowme

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:thud::loveeyes::loveeyes: What a handsome dog!! We had a collie mix when I was growing up because I love collies & she was a calming influence for our German Shepherds. He is going to love it having the kittens to look after. Our Rainbow Bridge Australian cattle dog loved keeping foster kittens from wandering off and he loved guarding our free-range laying hens as well.
 
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Kareywood

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Today our 4 kittens are 21 days old. Weights range from 12.875 to 15.375 ounces. Gap between biggest and smallest seems to be widening 😬 which worries me. Even worse, for the first time ( we’ve been weighing them daily since birth), the smallest kitten did not gain any weight at all in 24 hours (neither did the biggest kitten). Should I start supplementing with KMR? They are not crying and they seem no less active than usual. but should I take them to the vet tomorrow to get checked out? Thanks!
 

StanAndAlf

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If you are worried, a vet check can't hurt. As long as they are still active, not crying, eating fine and don't seem dehydrated, then I would say they are ok for now. With my kittens, the difference between the largest and the smallest was around 12 ounces at one stage, when they were 8 weeks old and both were happy and healthy. From my understanding, they do not have to put on weight everyday, as long as they increase by a few ounces a week. Others will have more to say, I'm sure. Super cute!
 
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Kareywood

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Thank you for responding, stanandalf! I Thought young kittens needed to gain .at least 375 ounces (10 grams) per day. I’ve never had a litter of kittens before and this is from a stray I took in. I just get nervous since I’ve also read that kittens are fragile and that usually about 15-20% of the kittens in a litter die before 8 weeks of age. After just 3 weeks, all 4 of these babies really matter to me...
 
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