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Soft versus hard foods...

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
Hi folks,

I'm fostering a mama and her wee three. They were all malnourished when I got them and the place that had them only had them a couple days--but it appears as though they're doing a lot better. My question is several folds...

I got a lot of soft AND hard food and mama/kittens eat both. I give them Hill's Diet A/D and Royal Canin Feline Nutrition growth 34.

Would it be ok to continue to feed both (plus I give the kittens KMR (because it was thought due to malnutrition mom wasn't able to produce enough milk, two kitties had already died and I'm sure that's the cause but I never saw them so I don't know) milk replacer several times a day (about three).

What worries me is how that darn soft food LOOKS after a couple hours of sitting out, is it ok for the cats to eat it that way? I leave the hard food full and out ALL the time so they always have something but I'm thinking it's time to merge and maybe even cut out the milk soon--they're 5-6 wks of age but under sized...I just feed them like crazy and they tend to nibble/sip at ALL three kinds of foods.

Any thoughts? A vet had once told me to give them reg hard kitten food and add some milk replacer OR water to soften it a bit.

Elyse


post #2 of 5
I wouldn't leave the canned food out for more than two hours, less if it is getting hard. Since the kittens are just nibbling a little, here and there, maybe you could put out less canned, more often. I wouldn't be in a hurry to cut out the KMR, if they all had been malnourished. It probably is helpful to the mother if the kittens aren't nursing on her as much but getting more filled up on food and KMR, so she can rebuild her strength quicker. I would continue with the canned and the dry food for life.

Isn't the Science Diet a/d one of the prescription formulas? Your vet felt they need that? There isn't a problem with giving cats two different brands of foods in general, as long as they are the right formulation for the age and need of the cats. Feeding different flavors and brands helps to keep cats from becoming overly finicky and dependent upon just one brand. I don't know that you would need the prescription diet though, if you feed them all a good quality kitten/nursing mother formula of any premium brand. You'd need to talk to the vet about that if he/she prescribed it for some particular reason.

Good luck with your kitties.
post #3 of 5
Royal Canin has a new product out just recently called Baby Cat that is specifically for baby kittens and lactating queens. You might want to secure a bag of it.

I would only leave the wet food out for a half an hour at the very least. You can help it keep a little fresher by adding some water to it, but leaving it out causes it to dry out quickly and lose it's taste fairly fast. Your better bet would be to make up a batch of kitten glop and let mom and babies eat that. You can leave that stuff out for them almost 24 hours with no ill effects. I will search for the recipe and post it here for you. Thank you for fostering this family.


Here is the recipe:

1 envelope Knox unflavored gelatin
1 12 oz can goat's milk
3 tablespoons plain yogurt
3 teaspoons clear karo syrup
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 egg (optional)

Boil water, mix in gelatin. Add other ingredients and mix with beater or blender. Serve warm or chilled.

Can be frozen in ice cube trays and defrosted as needed



My crew loved it nuked in the microwave for just a few seconds. Serving chilled food to cats never works for me, they either like it room temperature or hot.
post #4 of 5
Thread Starter 
Are quite welcome. The kittens seem to prefer to crunchy food by the way and also some KMR...they don't typically touch the soft A/D stuff. And the mom got that because she was emaciated and I guess they felt that was their best bet for her. She actually also has a vitamin supplement I'm to give her daily.


Elyse



post #5 of 5
Elyse, we took in our kitty (abandoned litter) when she was about 5-6 weeks old. I've been giving her Nutro Max Kitten dry and canned and KMR. I leave the dry food all day for her nibble at, but the formula and the canned foods are best taken away after about 1/2 hour so they don't spoil. The canned food says to feed it at room temp and I ususally warm up the formula just a touch (must be the mother in me )

I give the formula and the canned food in the AM and PM now that she has hit 8 weeks, but when she was smaller I tried to give them about 3-4 times a day in small amounts.

The vet says Tabby appears to be healthy and thriving and she gained about a 1/2 lb. in a 2 week period.
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