Timings on feedings


TCS Member
Hi Dusty! Thanks for coming in and helping out with our questions!

I have raised 2 orphan litters from 3 weeks and 10 days old. I have also found kittens at around 4-5 weeks old that I had to prompt to eat with a few days bottle feeding. All have thrived and I did not lose any of them.

I have read a lot of contradictory information on how often you need to feed pre-weaned kittens. When very young, I have heard anywhere between 1 hour and 4 hours, and understand that the the length of time between feedings gets longer as they get older. For the younger litter, I started them at 4 hour intervals, and gradually worked them up to 8 hours right before full weaning.

What is your advice on a feeding schedule with orphans?

Thanks in advance for your response.


TCS Member
Young Cat
Most of the time, I let the kitten tell me when dinnertime has arrived. He'll generally let you know when he's hungry by crying just like a human baby would do. How much you feed may vary from kitten to kitten. It also depends on his condition. If he's thin I feed more frequently than I would if he's a butterball. However you can usually find a good rule of is right on the container label. The KMR label recommends:

7 days and under- 6 times a day
8-14 days-4 times a day
15-21 days and older-three times a day

As he gets older he can hold more at a time and decrease the number of feedings per day. Most kittens will spit the nipple out when they're full. If you think he's eating too much or not enough, look at the label on you formula container.

Also, make sure to warm the bottle to body temperature.