When are cats weaned? If you want to prepare kitten weaning, first determine when you can wean the cat. He thinks that this process, in a natural way, begins when they have 4 weeks of life, that is to say 1 month, and ends between 8 and 10 weeks, at which time the cat will be completely weaned.
Are you interested in knowing all the details about when cats are weaned and how to do it? At OneHOWTO we invite you to continue reading this article, because in it we reveal the details to make it easier for you, as well as for the little cats and their mother.
At what time are cats weaned – find out the best age
At what age do kittens begin to wean? This is the first question that must be resolved when we take care of a litter or an orphaned kitten. If the little ones are with their mother, it is most likely that we will see how this process begins naturally, without our having to intervene, because we will see that the little ones begin to taste a little of the food from their mother’s feeder or plate and they will ask us taste our own food, meowing and even climbing on the table. However, if they are orphans, we will only see this behavior in some cases when they begin to show interest in what we eat.
A) Yes, cat weaning starts at 4 weeks of life, never before, although it may take a few more days to start. It is not something that happens suddenly, but it is a process that can last for some time until they stop drinking breast milk, or special powdered milk for orphaned cats, and only eat solid food, either homemade food or, feed or granules.
When we care for orphaned kittens or kittens found on the street, we often have doubts about their age and, perhaps, the task of weaning them can be a little more complicated. To begin with, it will be necessary for us to know how old the little ones are.
How can you tell the age of a cat?
Knowing the age of the little ones can sometimes be easy, but getting the exact weeks right can be somewhat more complicated. To facilitate the task, it is best that a veterinarian help us find out. However, there are certain aspects that we can easily detect at home to know the age of a feline, such as its teeth, whether or not they have erupted, its weight and size, and the reactions it may have in certain situations.
In this other OneHOWTO article, we tell you how to know the age of my cat.
How long does it take for a cat to wean?
As we have pointed out before, small cats begin weaning at 4 weeks, but the entire process can last up to 4 weeks. 8 or 10 weeks. Thus, cats can take between 1 month and 1 month and a half to fully wean.
Therefore, during this month or a little more, we will have to be very attentive to her diet, since this will be combined between the cat’s milk or powdered milk for cats and the solid food that we start giving her. It is best that you comment with the vet on everything you need to know about it, before you start testing on your own, to ensure a smooth transition and a healthy kitten.
Also remember that during this period of time it is vital that you feed your cat well after giving birth, as this way she will be able to produce the milk that the little ones need.
How to wean a cat?
Now that you know at what age they start and how long it can take, you may be wondering “how to wean my cat?”. To start, you not only have to look at the age of the animal, but you also need to look at its behavior to recognize if it is ready or not. Thus, the signs that will tell you that your kitten is ready to be weaned are the following:
- Teeth begin to poke through his gums.
- It does not have enough with breast milk, it does not stay satiated and asks for more food, meowing and looking for food, for example, in the cat’s bowl, in the kitchen, or on the table.
- Bite hard on the cat’s nipples, the bottle, your fingers while playing, or other objects.
To wean the cat correctly, it is necessary that, if the mother is there, you let it be a natural process. In other words, allow the mother to continue feeding him as many times as she wants, but also offer him some soft and mushy food, never start with the cat food. For example, you can give him some grilled chicken or turkey, without added salt or sauces.
Little by little, you will see that she is more and more interested in solid food than in her mother’s milk until a day will come when she will no longer suckle and the cat will no longer produce milk.
How to wean orphan cats
In the case of orphaned kittens that we bottle feed, the process is very similar. The difference is that we will have to mark the periods, the milk intakes and the moments in which we give them solid food. The best thing to do is talk to the vet on the best way to carry out the process, always according to the state of health of the children.
What happens if a cat is weaned early?
Premature weaning can cause various problems in kittens. This situation can occur for various reasons, but the most common is usually because the mother is not present from the beginning, but we must try to give them formula milk until they reach the minimum weeks for weaning, or because there has been a rush to separate the little ones of the mother, as happens in some cases in which the adopters or buyers are in a hurry to have the little one, something that can be a big mistake for health, socialization, and learning of the little one
Between the main problems of premature weaning, we highlight the following:
- Nutrient deficiency, which can cause pica syndrome (eating objects such as plastic, walls or fabrics).
- Low defenses.
- Easier to fall ill.
- Trouble learning to eat on their own.
- Little socialization.
- Fear and mistrust.
- Lack of game control, biting, scratching, etc.
- Little grooming habit.
- Problems using the litter box for their needs.
Thus, the problems not only occur in physical health, but also separate the kittens from their mother soon It will cause them not to learn most of the normal aspects of a cat, such as grooming, interacting, eating, hunting, playing, etc. It is easy for the little feline to grow up imitating the way of doing things of other animals that live with him, such as a dog for example, or of the humans who take care of him. Therefore, if during the learning stage his mother has not been able to teach him that he is a cat, she will not do the usual things of this species, but will imitate what she has seen up close.
When can a kitten be separated from its mother?
As we have seen, separating a cat from the cat before time can have serious consequences for the little one, as well as some problems for those who live with him.
To avoid these problems, it is recommended to wait at least 12 weeks of life Therefore, it is not advisable to separate a kitten from its mother before it is 3 months old. During this period the little one will learn almost everything he needs to know to develop in a healthy and balanced way as an adult cat.
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