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Orphans suckling on each other

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
Hi there,
I decided to start a new thread because I didn't want this question to get buried in my old thread.
The kittens that my sister and I have been raising started suckling on each others genitals the other day. Except for being grossed out by this, I was told by a friend not to worry, so I let it go. I just did a quick search online though, and I'm reading some sites telling me to seperate them by dividers in a box because the suckling can lead to sores. So far we haven't gotten any sores but they're starting to get their teeth breaking through, and I'm concerned. Should I be seperating them? I'd assume that being together would be best for them, but I want to make sure. Also, if I need to seperate them, how does one go about making such a box for 5 kittens? When could I put them back together?
post #2 of 14
My orphan kits did it.They did eventually suck until they became red in some areas.I just kept an eye on them and cleaned the area with warm water and shampoo on a wash coth.That kind of detured them from sucking for a bit.
If you notice sores, they say to get a large tote and divide it by placing cardboard in between the kits in the tote.You can keep them warm by putting a rice sock in with each of them also.
post #3 of 14
Thread Starter 
yeah? and no tissue damage? these sites make it sound the point where I'm wondering about dividing the 5 into 3 carriers and then dealing with the building or not building in the morning.
post #4 of 14
I think they make it look worse than it is, for the simple fact that sometimes things go wrong and they are worse.Mine had no problems what so ever from the suckling.For some reason, they prefer the males though.........for obvious reasons.
The main key is to keep them warm!! Being so little, they can get chilled and die from it.
Good luck and I am sending prayers your way that they all do GREAT!!!
WIth them being so little, you could probably place them into shoe boxes near one another.
Do you have a dog crate?You could put them all in shoe boxes in the dog crate and put a blanket over it..........leaving some airflow though.............and that would keep them warm too.
I put mine in our garden tub.But, as I said ours were 2-3 weeks old when my dog found them.
post #5 of 14
Thread Starter 
no dog crate and they're active enough at this point that they'd probably get out of shoeboxes. We're figuring they're about 2.5 weeks old, since they opened their eyes last week. Baby teeth are starting to come in, which is I guess my biggest worry. You'd think surely they'd just kick each other in the head, but no. They seem to prefer one of the females actually, who is the most passive and just rolls over and lets them suckle. I guess the key is to just keep an eye on them until further notice (or very strong opinions issued from the board). Thanks for helping me calm down, having never done this before I'm a little stressed about proper care.
post #6 of 14
Anytime!!! This board has been a life saver for me.When I found my orphans, I had NEVER dealt with babies so tiny.We still don't know where they came from either.Just stay as calm as you can, and if it's worrying you,give your Vet a call.
I'd just keep an eye on them for now though.
Mine were 6 1/2 weeks old and still sucking on one another and to be honest,it made me sick to my stomach.But, I learned it is normal and not a worry for the most part.
Good luck!!!
post #7 of 14
I have to disagree. My foster agency lost an entire litter due to suckling on each caused real damage that could not be corrected surgically. We always divide them up, either each in a separate home, or at least separate rubermaid totes. They only get to play and cuddle together when being watched. The urge to nurse is so strong, you can't blame the kitties, but it is really bad for both the kitten sucking (yuck) and the one being suckled.
post #8 of 14
Thread Starter 
I'll call my vet tomorrow, but does anyone else have an opinion?
post #9 of 14
Originally Posted by Sylorna View Post
I'll call my vet tomorrow, but does anyone else have an opinion?
I would seperate them and provide them with a stuffed animal to suckle on.

post #10 of 14
I have to agree to seperate. I had a litter that suckeled and one of them caused a sore on the other and at that age, with no mothers milk, their immune systems may not be that good.
post #11 of 14
Thread Starter 
Well, it's done...they're seperated. I made up a connected caging for them, where they each have 1 square foot and then put cardboard around the edges because they could still stick their heads through. Each square has it's own rice filled sock all warmed up, which they're cuddling with.
Can't go near the cage though, they can hear each other and are screaming for each other. Positively heartbreaking. I hope they get used to this soon, or stop suckiling.
post #12 of 14
I'm sorry that my info wasn't correct.
Hopefully they will get past the suckling stage soon and can be reunited
post #13 of 14
Thread Starter 
No worries, we can only offer help from our own experiences and knowledge. I was really hoping that we wouldn't have to seperate them too. I suppose we've got it worked out for the best, and at the very least two of them are able to stay together. They really like their rice socks!
post #14 of 14
Yes, the rice socks are a life saver to young kits!!
Good luck and keep us posted.
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