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Bottle Feeding Abandoned Kitty

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
Yesterday I acquired a kitty who, apparently, was a cast off from a litter. It does have an eye infection but Vet prescribed Terramycin and is not to worried about it.

The kitten(Henceforth refered to as Blue) refuses the bottle. I have had cats for years and years but am a steadfast spayer so this is my first experience with a baby. Blue is about 1.5-2weeks old. Ive tried a syringe without much luck although I think its because the syringe is on high power mode and its more like a power washer!

I would really like this little tyke to survive but I'm feeling really terrible as a provider of food! I've read alot of the suggestions and, although they make them sound relatively easy, Blue isnt reading them and would rather do things his way.

Anyone with any suggestions on bottle feeding would be more than welcome!

Also, the little bugger has fleas and TONS of flea dirt in his coat. If kept warm and dry afterwards can I bathe?

I'm open to any and all!
post #2 of 15
See if the local pharmacy will let you have a 1 cc syringe - also used for allergy shots or insulin. One cc is 1/5 of a teaspoon or 16 drops. Explain what you need it for and they might let you have it.

Get a flea comb or a lice nit comb. the ones with the metal tines, not al plastic, work best. You will need to wash all of the lines and treat the areas where the kitten has been.

Good luck with the baby.
post #3 of 15
Another suggestion is a small medicine dropper, available at any drug store. You know, with the squeezie-bulb thing on top. Try rubbing a few drops of milk on his lips and see if he will lick it off, tho' he is really really young.

Other people here might have suggestions for force-feeding if necessary. I don't have any experience with that.
post #4 of 15
the only other thing i can suggest is if he really dosnt respond to feeding, ask a vet as a last resort to tube the little one and he will be able to show you how this is done.
Good luck and i hope he lives a healthy life, Your a sweetie for takeing care of this little one.
post #5 of 15
This site has a wealth of information for dealing with orphaned kittens:


Good Luck!
post #6 of 15
I used an eye dropper with a foster kitten who was just over a week old. He hadn't eaten in a full day when I ran to the pharmacy at 11 at night and got ready-to-use Enfalac and he started to eat. His eyes just had opened but it had an eye infection and was unable to find a boob to eat because it couldn't smell, and the SPCA vet thought it might lose it's eye but we were given salve and drops to put in to see if it would help.

The baby sucked on the eye dropper so easily. The kitten was then able to gain weight, get better and the vet said we did such a great job on Punkin Pie and the eye was fine. I sure got attached to the little guy because I fed him every 3 hours.

I would definitely try the eye dropper witht the rubber bulb.
post #7 of 15
I think I read somewhere on these forums that you could try rubbing a little bit of Karo syrup on the gums. (Good luck!)
post #8 of 15
Thread Starter 
Thanks so much for all your suggestions!!

Today has been a better day I think. She seems to be latching on to the bottle periodically. I think I have found the perfect combination of nipple size, shape and hole size. Also switched out to the pre-made KMR which seems to do better with the nipple. Also my husband cut a little hole in one of our washclothes and she seems to like having the nipple popping out of that.

I gave her a little warm water bath which seems to have drowned quite a number of the fleas. The rest I've been combing out with the suggested metal flea comb.

The Terramycin seems to be helping her eye nicely.

So all is well for now. Except that I'm feeling a little old for the lack of sleep!
post #9 of 15
I'm glad that it is starting to work better. I hope that Blue will do well. I'm also bottle feeding 2 babies that someone left on my porch in a box when they were only a couple of days old.
post #10 of 15
Oh congratulations on your little one! and good luck with raising him. I'm glad to hear things are working out for you now. You guys will be bonded for life!
post #11 of 15
Can't offer anything but moral support -- but wanted to let you know you aren't the only one who can't manage to bottle feed a kitten!

Ms Friskers, for the first 24 hours post-birth, was fairly inattentive to her litter, to the point where I started worrying about them getting enough food, so I went and got KMR and a bottle and was trying to get them a couple extra feedings a day to help them out... yeesh. All I can say is it's a good thing that she calmed down or whatever she needed to do, and has been nursing them non-stop since day 2 because I was absolutely hopeless at getting them to nurse off the bottle.

Now momma is just getting the KMR in a little dish, which she LOVES!
post #12 of 15
How is your little one today?
post #13 of 15
ohhh your such a great person for taking in this helpless kitten!!! believe me i kno the feeling of lack of sleep, i had to bottle feed my Monster. but to be honest, the feeling of knowing you saved this kittens life is very rewarding. you will get attached to this kitten. do you kno if its a boy or girl?

i had a hard time getting my baby to use the bottle so i switched to a syringe, which worked alot better. kittens this young are really sussepable to disease so make sure you soak the bottle & nipple/syringe in boiling water to kill germs after feeding time. & you should already kno you have to stimulate the privates to make baby potty. also you kinda have to try to burp the kitty too. when i had Monster for a week or so, i would hold him over a small litter box while i stimulated him, & when he would start to go i would put him down in the litter so he would get the idea of what the litter was for, he caught on pretty quickly & soon he was using it on his own. he also caught on to eating solids quickly too... it is such a rewarding experience, & if god forbid you find another kitten that young you will know what to do.
post #14 of 15
Thread Starter 
I am happy to report that I found a surrogate Momma cat who has taken in the little Blue! Her new brothers and sisters are about 4 or 5 days older but she is fitting in just great!!

Actually, after the introduction of Blue to the new Momma, the Momma licked her up and then Blue latched on and *I* cried like a baby!!

I now have just received a new foster cat from the shelter. Her name is Little Girl and she is VERY pregnant. I'll foster her through the birth and up until the kittens are of an adoptable age.

I could get attached to this fostering thing!
post #15 of 15
I am glad you found a momma cat to take this little one. No matter how well we do with the bottle babies, we still can't take care of them as well as a momma cat can.
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