kitten questions feeding/weight, etc

Ladyrosee

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I foster for a shelter and got kittens on the 16th of this month (said april 11th they were a week old) eyes opened fully a couple days before I picked them up. I weigh in grams, as most people do? The previous foster who took them at a week old said grams too. She gave me the weight chart with notes showing they gained daily. I add to it daily and theyre increasing daily by at least 10g. The runt is about 50g smaller but most are about 350g and like I said increasing daily.
They told me at the shelter appt today: "since the kittens first arrived at the shelter comparing weights then to now they actually lost weight ... and we weigh in lbs/oz NOT grams"

I have no idea what theyre talking about and I'm concerned what they're thinking. They're acting like I'm starving them and i feed every few hours and they split a 40ml bottle for the 3 of them. If I try to feed them sooner they won't latch and don't act hungry.

Am I crazy? Am I starving them? I'm so tired and they acted like I dont feed them at all when they said they lost weight from a week ago in ounces. they also told me to force feed and I've heard nothing but "NEVER FORCE FEED A KITTEN". Kittenlady says gain 10g a day, has a feeding chart with the frequency and amount. I follow it and they're gaining on my scale and the shelter one that was provided

The shelter people said "feed 3 to 6 ml every 2 HOURS.. if they don't want it then force it into them"
Something about that feels very wrong. They eat, and they chug every 3 hours. But 2 hours they turn their head away
 
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Sarthur2

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You are correct and whomever you spoke with at the shelter is incorrect. Always weigh in grams when this young; NEVER force feed except in extreme cases; AND, all 3 kittens weigh more than the minimum for their age. Also, gaining 6-10 grams per day (or more) is enough.

The kittens are 2 weeks old and should weigh 8 ounces. They ALL weigh more than 8 ounces, and 2 of them weigh closer to 12 ounces, which is the target weight for 3-week-olds. I always use grams and then convert the grams to ounces if need be.

You are feeding plenty, they are gaining nicely, and every 3 hours is about right for their current weight.

Hang in there! You are doing just fine with these kittens! We’re here for you. :lovecat2:
 
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Ladyrosee

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You are correct and whomever you spoke with at the shelter is incorrect. Always weigh in grams when this young; NEVER force feed except in extreme cases; AND, all 3 kittens weigh more than the minimum for their age. Also, gaining 6-10 grams per day (or more) is enough.

The kittens are 2 weeks old and should weigh 8 ounces. They ALL weigh more than 8 ounces, and 2 of them weigh closer to 12 ounces, which is the target weight for 3-week-olds. I always use grams and then convert the grams to ounces if need be.

You are feeding plenty, they are gaining nicely, and every 3 hours is about right for their current weight.

Hang in there! You are doing just fine with these kittens! We’re here for you. :lovecat2:
Thank you. can I send you a picture of them and let me know what you think? I honestly feel like theyre aged wrong too... and what's worse is they saw an actual vet today. I used to work for a cat only clinic and the owner (worked with only cats for 30 years) had an appointment for a 2 week old kitten and he asked ME "what do they eat.. dont you just give them wet food? Meat? They dont use bottles.." I was like are you kidding me? That is a baby and they drink from a bottle until they're about 4 to 5 weeks and you start weaning with a mix of formula and wet food. It makes me wonder if most vets dont know anything about kitten health before 8 weeks.

Back to the shelter topic, they seriously made me feel like a failure. I got out the scale they gave me and I weighed on that scale and the kitchen scale I got from amazon and both matched. They gain every day as you can see on the chart. How the heck did they tell me they lost weight since a week ago? Ugh
 
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Ladyrosee

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Definitely 2 weeks right?. If they truly were a week old on the 11th then their birthday would be april 4th. it just makes it hard for me to even trust how old they said they were. I'm so exhausted so I'm second guessing everything now and actually believing I'm starving them even though their weight is going up on MY recordings every 24 hours

I'm just so worried by their next appointment in 2 weeks that theyll say something else stupid and take them away from me for "neglect"
 

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Sarthur2

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The error is on the shelter side, not yours!

Are the kittens toddling out of the nest yet? That happens at about 3 weeks old. Their weights indicate they are between 2 and 3 weeks old. You clearly know what you’re doing; however, I’ve found that vets in general are poorly qualified with tiny kittens. That’s why we’re here. Do not second-guess yourself. Maybe communicate with the shelter only when necessary for now. The kittens sound perfectly healthy for being about 15 days old.
 
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Ladyrosee

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The error is on the shelter side, not yours!

Are the kittens toddling out of the nest yet? That happens at about 3 weeks old. Their weights indicate they are between 2 and 3 weeks old. You clearly know what you’re doing; however, I’ve found that vets in general are poorly qualified with tiny kittens. That’s why we’re here. Do not second-guess yourself. Maybe communicate with the shelter only when necessary for now. The kittens sound perfectly healthy for being about 15 days old.
These are my first bottle babies aside from some random puppies. The kittens latch best between 3 to 4 hours. but they tell me I must feed exactly 2 hours and 3 to 6 mls a feeding. No way. I try to feed them at 2 hours and they just turn their head away the whole time.

Theh do! They're in an 18 gal tote.. or maybe a little bigger. They go to each end back and forth all day crawling around. They love to be on their stomach and look at me and make biscuits and purr. They're very active. The runt is so tiny though her head is so small. I guess her eyes opened a few days later than the others. But she still is gaining.
I have two snuggle safe disks one on each end and theyre usually in a different spot every time I check on them and are nibbling on each other rolling around

Pooping is something I havent mastered. I took broccoli in (one on the left of the chart) in today because his stomach was huge and hard and i thought he was constipated he wasnt going for me the 3 days I had him. They got him to go right away on his back. This part is hard for me :( the runt hasnt gone in a couple of days now. I'm going to give her a little swipe of pumpkin
 

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You’re doing a beautiful job! Keep it up. The kittens are getting plenty. They are adorable. Thank you for fostering. 😊
 
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Ladyrosee

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You’re doing a beautiful job! Keep it up. The kittens are getting plenty. They are adorable. Thank you for fostering. 😊
I hope so.. do you have any advice for poops? One pooped today because they claimed he did at the vet. The others havent since yesterday.. well one had a tiny tiny bit today.
 
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Ladyrosee

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I basically just feed them while they do their long latch and they let go and I burp them and cycle through the kittens and potty them. Then I try again and most of the time they just turn their head away
 

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Add 2-3 drops of olive oil to their milk before feedings. It helps to soften things up and keep it moving.
 
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Ladyrosee

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You’re doing a beautiful job! Keep it up. The kittens are getting plenty. They are adorable. Thank you for fostering. 😊
Thank you. They sucked down half a 2 oz bottle for a snack just now. They're so playful right now and the other is in his tub thrashing around on his back sticking his paws in his mouth and grooming himself 😂😭
20210419_192242.jpg
 

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I foster for a shelter. I am currently fostering a mm and her five 10-day old kittens. All have been gaining 10-20g each day, except this weekend when two hit a standstill. I picked up supplies from the shelter today to possible bottle feed but Fettuccine gained 13g today & Cavatappi gained 6g today. I think F’s gain was good and I’ll monitor him. What is your thought on Cavatappi? Is 6g too low a gain? I don’t mind bottle feeding, but they have mom.
 
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Ladyrosee

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I foster for a shelter. I am currently fostering a mm and her five 10-day old kittens. All have been gaining 10-20g each day, except this weekend when two hit a standstill. I picked up supplies from the shelter today to possible bottle feed but Fettuccine gained 13g today & Cavatappi gained 6g today. I think F’s gain was good and I’ll monitor him. What is your thought on Cavatappi? Is 6g too low a gain? I don’t mind bottle feeding, but they have mom.
I feel like as long as they're gaining. Or maintaining. One of mine gained about 40g in 24 hours and today he hasnt gained any weight. I've heard if they gain a lot they kind of sit there for a bit
 

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I foster for a shelter and got kittens on the 16th of this month (said april 11th they were a week old) eyes opened fully a couple days before I picked them up. I weigh in grams, as most people do? The previous foster who took them at a week old said grams too. She gave me the weight chart with notes showing they gained daily. I add to it daily and theyre increasing daily by at least 10g. The runt is about 50g smaller but most are about 350g and like I said increasing daily.
They told me at the shelter appt today: "since the kittens first arrived at the shelter comparing weights then to now they actually lost weight ... and we weigh in lbs/oz NOT grams"

I have no idea what theyre talking about and I'm concerned what they're thinking. They're acting like I'm starving them and i feed every few hours and they split a 40ml bottle for the 3 of them. If I try to feed them sooner they won't latch and don't act hungry.

Am I crazy? Am I starving them? I'm so tired and they acted like I dont feed them at all when they said they lost weight from a week ago in ounces. they also told me to force feed and I've heard nothing but "NEVER FORCE FEED A KITTEN". Kittenlady says gain 10g a day, has a feeding chart with the frequency and amount. I follow it and they're gaining on my scale and the shelter one that was provided

The shelter people said "feed 3 to 6 ml every 2 HOURS.. if they don't want it then force it into them"
Something about that feels very wrong. They eat, and they chug every 3 hours. But 2 hours they turn their head away
You are doing everything right. What you measure in doenst matter much, but its easiest to do it in grammes, because you immediately see what you got. That is why we recommend grammes.

BUT if they are used to measure in ounces, they arent used to grammes. So my guess is, they got something mixed up, and honestly think kittens weight with you is lower now then their starting weight. So they panicked, very understably.

And IF so, of course its Red Alert, and you must press into them more at all costs... that is why they are pushing you this bad and a little unpleasantly too.

Good you do have exact protocol on what you are doing (and see them add properly). Good is also you consult us, to be entirely safe you are doing good. You are acting as in the Handbook of proper kitten care!

If necessary, you can always refer your shelter manager to us; it was no sheer fantasies from you; you had got consultation and advices and got approval here...

Ps. Yeah, with healthy kittens very often its enough to feed every 3 hours. So I understand they are happy with feeding every 3 hours.
Its one of the reasons why its so good to weigh them every day: if they seems contend, and add 10+ grammes a day, its nice and well...
But if they arent interested in food, and not gain, ie they are really letargic, its not good and you must supplement with glucose sugar and forcefeed ...


The usual dosage of goats milk or KMR is 8ml / 1 ounce a day. Or say 9ml / 30grammes a day. (1Oz = a shade lesser than 30g)
More if they want, but shouldnt be much less.

So a kitten of 300 grammes should get about 90 ml a day... Feeding every 3 hours, 90/8 about 11-12 ml at a time. You write 40ml on 3 kittens, so it is quite exactly so. :)

A smaller kitten of 120 grammes about 35-36 ml a day.
 
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Ladyrosee

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You are doing everything right. What you measure in doenst matter much, but its easiest to do it in grammes, because you immediately see what you got. That is why we recommend grammes.

BUT if they are used to measure in ounces, they arent used to grammes. So my guess is, they got something mixed up, and honestly think kittens weight with you is lower now then their starting weight. So they panicked, very understably.

And IF so, of course its Red Alert, and you must press into them more at all costs... that is why they are pushing you this bad and a little unpleasantly too.

Good you do have exact protocol on what you are doing (and see them add properly). Good is also you consult us, to be entirely safe you are doing good. You are acting as in the Handbook of proper kitten care!

If necessary, you can always refer your shelter manager to us; it was no sheer fantasies from you; you had got consultation and advices and got approval here...

Ps. Yeah, with healthy kittens very often its enough to feed every 3 hours. So I understand they are happy with feeding every 3 hours.
Its one of the reasons why its so good to weigh them every day: if they seems contend, and add 10+ grammes a day, its nice and well...
But if they arent interested in food, and not gain, ie they are really letargic, its not good and you must supplement with glucose sugar and forcefeed ...


The usual dosage of goats milk or KMR is 8ml / 1 ounce a day. Or say 9ml / 30grammes a day. (1Oz = a shade lesser than 30g)
More if they want, but shouldnt be much less.

So a kitten of 300 grammes should get about 90 ml a day... Feeding every 3 hours, 90/8 about 11-12 ml at a time. You write 40ml on 3 kittens, so it is quite exactly so. :)

A smaller kitten of 120 grammes about 35-36 ml a day.
Thank you for that. Some feedings one may be pickier. Last feeding the runt was she just wanted to cuddle on me and roll around on her belly and br silly but that usually means the next feeding I feed her first and she will eat a lot more to even it out. Theres usually one picky one if I dont wait 3 to 4 hours. feeding them every 2 hours they really dont want anything. They always act alert, purring, even playful at just 2 weeks old and they bat at me and play with my hair a little and roll around with each other. Sometimes one will be fussy when I check on them rutting around for food so I'll make them a quick small bottle for a snack while the others dont care for one.

I truly think they are doing well.. the pooping part is hard because they like KMR formula and I've heard no good things about it but it's what they got used to from the previous foster home. I have breeder's edge but they refused it most of the first day I tried, I got nervous so I gave them the KMR and they sucked it up. I need the runt to poop soon, it's been a couple of days :(
 

StefanZ

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I foster for a shelter. I am currently fostering a mm and her five 10-day old kittens. All have been gaining 10-20g each day, except this weekend when two hit a standstill. I picked up supplies from the shelter today to possible bottle feed but Fettuccine gained 13g today & Cavatappi gained 6g today. I think F’s gain was good and I’ll monitor him. What is your thought on Cavatappi? Is 6g too low a gain? I don’t mind bottle feeding, but they have mom.
Cavattappi stood still? 6mg is Ok for an occasionally day or two, but standing still and going up just 6g is too little. Have Yellow Alert on him, and plan on doing something. Monitor very closely.

Perhaps take away some of the biggies, let them sleep midday in a warm cozy place, so Cavattappi has alone quality time with momma?? You can also always add a little glucose sugar on his gum. In USA it will typically be white caro sugar as glucose sugar is difficult to find in USA.
Put a tiny droplet behind the lip on his gum; gives quick energhy and helps him to nurse properly.


Ps. Start your own tread, its easier to see your reports, and easier to answer them.
 

StefanZ

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Thank you for that. Some feedings one may be pickier. Last feeding the runt was she just wanted to cuddle on me and roll around on her belly and br silly but that usually means the next feeding I feed her first and she will eat a lot more to even it out. Theres usually one picky one if I dont wait 3 to 4 hours. feeding them every 2 hours they really dont want anything. They always act alert, purring, even playful at just 2 weeks old and they bat at me and play with my hair a little and roll around with each other. Sometimes one will be fussy when I check on them rutting around for food so I'll make them a quick small bottle for a snack while the others dont care for one.

I truly think they are doing well.. the pooping part is hard because they like KMR formula and I've heard no good things about it but it's what they got used to from the previous foster home. I have breeder's edge but they refused it most of the first day I tried, I got nervous so I gave them the KMR and they sucked it up. I need the runt to poop soon, it's been a couple of days :(
KMR in powder has good reputation and works well for most kittens. But the premade liquid KMR is more uneven, peculiarly. For some it works OK, for some less so, with constipation or runny poo...

If KMR doesnt work out, a good alternative is often goats milk. Preferably raw goats milk, but say, Meyenbergs powdered goats milk is OK to use.

A couple of days of not pooing isnt that unusual....But you want her to go and make her poo.

What had you done so far to get her to poo?
 
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Ladyrosee

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KMR in powder has good reputation and works well for most kittens. But the premade liquid KMR is more uneven, peculiarly. For some it works OK, for some less so, with constipation or runny poo...

If KMR doesnt work out, a good alternative is often goats milk. Preferably raw goats milk, but say, Meyenbergs powdered goats milk is OK to use.

A couple of days of not pooing isnt that unusual....But you want her to go and make her poo.

What had you done so far to get her to poo?
I put a couple drops of olive oil in the last bottle. I'm trying different motions of stimulating. I do little circles for peeing and I finally got one of them to poop after a day of no poop a few hours ago.. but this poop wasnt his normal soft formed yellow it looked like it might be older poop and was a bit harder and darker, not bloody but just brown. I thought of a mama cat how her tongue would lick it with pressure so I took baby wipes and was swiping and putting pressure on his anus directly in a licking motion and finally he got a tiny piece out and then cried a lot as he pushed more out. The one that I thought was constipated they said they got him to poop about 10 hours ago. So now the runt needs to. She was doing good with poops and had a few one day but now it's like theres nothing.

I just worry with feeding portions. I dont exactly know how much each gets in a day ML wise with formula (its powder too not canned prepared KMR) but they gain at LEAST 10 grams a day. I feel if I wasnt giving enough formulary they wouldnt gain weight, obvious right? But the shelter really really stressed me out and made me think everything I did and thought was wrong. I know you guys know better here. And all my reading and following rescuers on Facebook or instagram with their kittens thriving and instructions for them I've read and memorized them all.
 
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