Not only will we address our viewer’s question, ‘What do 4 week old kittens eat?’, but we review several kitten food products that you can buy in preparation for your kittens arrival to your home.
A critical time for kittens
Taking care of 4-week-old kittens can be an overwhelming job. It’s around the age where a kitten should just be beginning the weaning process from its mother. It is the most important time to be providing foods that boost growth and development.
So, what do you need to know about getting messy in the kitchen and looking after your young cats?
It’s important to get specific when feeding your kittens by following criteria that will ensure they grow strong and healthy.
When should you feed them?
The older your kittens get, the space between feeding them gets longer. Kittens less than 4 weeks tend to need feeding every few hours and 4-week-old kittens should be fed around every six hours.
However, it’s crucial that once you’ve picked a feeding routine, you should stick to it to avoid unnecessary stress on your pet.
What do 4-week-old kittens eat?
4-week-old kittens can be fed a ‘gruel mixture’, cat food to help in the process of weaning and easing them into eating solid foods safely. Gruel is made up of kitten replacement formula (used to replace its mother’s milk), warm water and high quality wet or dry kitten food, stirred to oatmeal consistency. Our recommended kitten foods can be found below.
Gruel is the best option as you can slowly create a thicker and thicker mixture over the following weeks, until your kitten has transitioned to plain food.
If your cat doesn’t take to the diet immediately, don’t stress! Just include the milk addition to make sure they’re getting enough calories. Most milk replacements contain 1 calorie per millilitre and 4-week-old kittens generally need about 8 calories per ounce of body weight.
There are a few important things to note before you jump straight into the kitchen!
Milk replacements should never be sourced from cow’s milk, it doesn’t have the nutrients your kitten needs and can cause gastrointestinal upset.
Teaching 4-week-old kittens how to eat thicker foods might be a bit new to you too, but here are some tips:
After washing your hands, stick a bit of gruel on the tip of your finger and place it in the kitten’s mouth. Slowly let it follow your finger back to the bowl of gruel until it starts to eat by itself.
Make sure your gruel is made with good quality products specifically made for kittens. It should be labelled on the packet you buy, or to save you some time, we’ve listed our favourites here.
Our recommended foods for 4-week-old kittens
4.7 Star rating
Purina One Cat Food is a popular cat food brand, because of its more affordable prices and stated high protein content. The Purina One Healthy Kitten Formula Dry Cat Food’s number one ingredient is real chicken and can be bought in bags ranging from 3.5lb to 16lb.
4.8 Star Rating
Blue Buffalo is a well-establish cat food brand, acknowledged especially for its lack of artificial flavours, preservatives and by-products of chicken and poultry. The Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Grain Free Natural Kitten Dry Cat Food, Chicken can come in 2lb and 5lb bags, along with a bag bundle option.
4.6 Star Rating
Wellness Complete Health Kitten Canned Wet Cat Food, Chicken Pate is a meat-based wet food option that comes in packs of 24 cans, either 3 ounces or 5.5 ounces.
4.5 Star Rating
Purina Pro Plan variety pack includes 24 cans of high protein wet kitten food offering nutritionally balanced meals with a choice of three recipes.
What do 4 week old kittens eat? Final Thoughts.
Being prepared is key to your new kitten getting the nutrients it needs. Having the correct kitten food ready to go before kitty arrives to live with you is important and will allow for a smooth weaning process.
Observe as your kitten adjusts to its new diet. If it develops gastro problems or is resistant to eating the kitten food, then take a step back. Moving from kitten milk formula (or mother cat milk) to a dry or wet kitten food is a gradual process and shouldn’t be rushed.
A Final Word
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