Good food is very important for the health and development of your kitten, but what can a kitten eat and drink, and what should be avoided? Here are our tips!
From mother’s milk to solid food
For the first weeks of their lives, the diet of kittens consists of mother’s milk only. Mother’s milk will do for the first 3 to 4 weeks. After that, you may begin adding canned food to their diet. Starting at around 6 or 7 weeks, most kittens can switch over to solid food completely and no longer need to drink from their mother. Around 8 or 9 weeks the kittens are ready to leave the nest (although later is better) and move to their new owner. Your kitten was probably a few months old when you purchased it.
What can a kitten eat?
Of course, you want to provide the best possible home for your kitten which includes a healthy diet. A 6-week-old kitten can be fed both dry food (kibble) and wet food (canned). Their small teeth may still struggle with kibble, so it is a good idea to soak the kibble in lukewarm water at first. Yarrah Grain-Free cat food is very well-suited for kittens. The kibble is rich in protein and fat which is important for the kitten’s growth and health.
Protein and fat: important nutrients in a kitten’s diet
Kittens grow fastest during the first stage of their life. Proteins and fat are essential nutrients for stimulating that growth. Do make sure you give them the correct proportion of proteins and fat, we recommend 32% protein and 13% fat. Proteins ensure healthy growth while fat gives the kitten the energy it needs to get enough exercise. Apart from giving them enough protein and fat, it is important to make sure the food does not contain any chemical preservatives and artificial scents, pigments and flavourings. This reduces the risk of allergies and other health issues. All Yarrah food is 100% organic, which means it contains no chemical preservatives or artificial scents, pigments and flavourings.
Water and wet food
Cats are naturally poor drinkers, but just like any other animal and humans alike, cats need water to survive. On average, cats need 50 ml water per kg of body weight. This amounts to 25 ml for a 500-gram kitten. Since water makes up a larger portion of a kitten’s body than that of an adult cat, it is extra important to make sure they drink enough. You can help make sure your kitten gets enough water by feeding it wet food. Almost all cats consider it a real treat and since it contains a lot of moisture, the cat will be ingesting some of the necessary water without knowing it. Yarrah wet food is suitable for all ages, from kittens to senior cats. Apart from serving it wet food, make sure your cat has access to one or several bowls of fresh water. This will allow you cat to have a drink when it feels like it. It is best to keep the water at room temperature. Is your kitten suddenly drinking much more or less water than before? Contact a vet.
How many daily meals
Cats are known for eating many small meals throughout the day. On average, a kitten will eat around 5 to 6 times a day. They only eat a little bit at a time because their stomachs are small. You can leave kibble out for the entire day; they will stay crunchy and fresh. Wet food is best given only once a day or spread across two daily meals to make sure it doesn’t get dirty and doesn’t spoil. Check the feeding schedule on our products for the recommended daily amount of food. Our food calculator will help you figure out the right daily amount of dry and wet food for your cat.
Switching to a different type of food
When picking up your kitten, always ask what type of food the kitten has been getting so you know what food the kitten is used to. If you want to switch to different food, it is best to gradually introduce the new food by mixing it into the current food throughout the first seven days. Slowly reduce the amount of the current food and increase the amount of new food.