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too weak to suck

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
Someone dumped three newborn kittens with me Sunday night. At that time two were drinking the bottle just fine and one wasn't. That one died yesterday (after 24 hours with me).

Last night one was sucking fine and the other was not. Now they are both too weak to suck.

I have heard of tube feeding. How do I do this, and what do I need? My vet doesn't know.
post #2 of 14
Oh gosh -- I don't know, either, but I'd call another vet fast! Or a shelter or rescue organization! I can't believe no one else has responded to this yet -- I'll PM someone...
post #3 of 14
Okay, I've sent a PM to three of the moderators here, and they'll know what to do. I hope you come back online soon... and I'm sending good thoughts for the kittens. Meanwhile, if nothing else, you could use an eyedropper or syringe to give them a little formula... and be sure to keep them very warm. That's all I know to do, I'm afraid!
post #4 of 14
Originally Posted by CarolPetunia View Post
Okay, I've sent a PM to three of the moderators here, and they'll know what to do.
Thank you!

Bless you, new friend, for caring for these precious little ones!
post #5 of 14
There is a very good website here :


which may have the information your vet SHOULD have but doesn't. Call around in your area to see if anyone (vet-wise or rescue, shelter or other animal related organization) has any experience with neonatal kittens.

As much as it pains me to say this, I am probably already too late to help you, but you can try to rub a little Karo (plain light corn syrup) on their gums to help stimulate the suckling action. Have the bottle ready and you can also rub a small drop directly onto the nipple to get things going.

I sincerely wish you the best of luck with this ... although I know the odds are very much stacked against these two.
post #6 of 14
Kathylou? I'm thinking of the kittens and hoping for a miracle. Please update us when you can...
post #7 of 14
Any news on the kittens? I'm keeping my fingers crossed. Bless you for trying to help them.
post #8 of 14
Are they warm enough? Kittens won't suck if they are too cold; and they generally can't keep up their body temperature on their own. Check out that kitten rescue site and make some rice heaters or get some other source of gentle warmth, to get them up to proper kitten body temperature. Maybe that will help them.

Try the karo syrup. Also see if they will lick at a bit of formula dripped into their mouths; sometimes that works.

Abandoned kittens are really fragile a lot of the time; don't beat yourself up if they don't survive, because you can't do any more than you are doing.

Good luck with the little ones. I hope they pull through...
post #9 of 14
Thread Starter 
I am sorry to say that they did not make it. I called all over town and drove to a few places, but the tubes were just not available.

They died real fast, and they were peaceful. We sat and held them, so they were warm and as happy as possible.

I know they don't all make it. This was the first time for me that any didn't.

Next time, if there IS a next time, I'll remember to try the Karo syrup. Thanks.

My daughter reminded me that in a case like this, I also have a responsibility not to expose my own cats to possible disease.
post #10 of 14
Oh my How sad.
All i can say is how sorry i am,and that you did a great job taking them in and trying your best.I've been checking back all day for an update and my thoughts have been with you.
post #11 of 14
I am sorry for your loss. Thank you for being a good enough person to even try.
post #12 of 14
Bless you for trying. Those dear little ones are in God's hands now and you were there to help ease their passing. You did everything you could under the circumstances. Hugs.
post #13 of 14
It's so painful to lose little ones in your care, I'm so sorry. You were their angel.
post #14 of 14
I know that thousands and thousands of kittens die every day... but somehow knowing about these three in particular makes their loss even more painful. You were so good to try to help them. Thank you for giving them some love in their short lives.
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