The ideal weight of a kitten
A slightly plump kitten is very cute, but extra weight is not always ideal for your pet’s health. Owners should pay attention to the correct average kitten weight to make sure that their pet develops into a healthy adult cat. Here you can find information about the ideal weight of a kitten according to their age and a handy kitten weight chart.
Newborn kitten weight
Average kitten weight at birth is about 90g, but it can range from 80g-110g. Large cat breeds like the Norwegian Forest Cat are obviously a bit bigger and heavier at birth than small cats like a Siamese.
During the first four weeks after birth the kitten drinks mother’s milk. During this time you obviously don’t have to worry about how much to feed a kitten so that they can maintain a healthy kitten weight. The kitten decides when they’ve had enough.
You might have to intervene if you notice that one of the kittens is lagging behind the others. This kitten might be weaker and losing the battle against their stronger brothers or sisters or they could have some other problem that prevents them from suckling effectively.
Once the kittens’ first teeth appear it’s time to start introducing them to solid food. This could be as soon as four weeks after birth, but some kittens take up to six weeks before they are ready for solids.
Kitten weight at 9 weeks of age
During the first few weeks after birth kittens grow very fast. Every morning it seems as though they had a growth spurt overnight. As a benchmark you can assume that a kitten will gain about 100 grams weekly. The average weight of a kitten at 9 weeks will therefore be about 900 grams.
In general, male kittens will be slightly heavier than females, weighing about 1Kg at 9 weeks of age. You can use the following kitten weight chart to monitor your kitten’s weight gain every four weeks.
|Week||Weigh in grammes|
|2||190 - 320|
|3||290 - 420|
|4||390 - 520|
|8||790 - 920|
|12||1200 - 1300|
Keep a record of your kitten's weight. Weighing them once every four weeks is enough, but you could weigh them every week if you wanted to.
What if a kitten’s weight is not according to schedule
Obviously it would be difficult to create a kitten weight chart which takes every breed and gender into account. You don’t have to panic right away if your kitten’s weight does not follow the schedule provided in the above chart exactly.
There are a few physical observations that could also tell you whether your kitten’s weight is healthy:
- Your kitten's ribs are not visible, but you can feel them easily
- If you look at your kitten from above, you can clearly see a waist
- Your kitten has very little fat around their belly
You need to intervene if your kitten is gaining too much weight, but also if you notice that they are not gaining or even losing weight. This could be a sign of an underlying health problem and a visit to your vet might be a good idea.
Maintaining a healthy kitten weight
For pet owner’s it is much easier to control a dog’s weight than that of their cat. You can take a dog for a longer walk but getting a cat to move more is a challenge. You could encourage more movement by playing an active game with them, like waving a toy cat wand, but if your cat doesn’t feel like playing they will just sit and look at you.
What you can do is to make sure that they are getting the right food. Yarrah's organic Grain-Free cat food is suitable for kittens from as young as 6 weeks. It contains organic chicken, MSC herring, tapioca and peas and has an extra high protein and fat content. This way your kitten gets the nutrition they need to support bone and muscle growth but without too many calories which could lead to weight gain.