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Do I need a heating pad for kittens?

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

The stray we took in is getting close to having her kittens and I'm wondering if I should add a heating pad under half of the nesting box? I only ask because she's in the basement as she can't be vaccinated until after the kittens. It's not cold down there but the concrete floor is chilly in my opinion. We have her in two of those big barred dog crates connected so she's got the thin plastic flooring and a storage bin with a door cut out for her nesting box with about 2" of blanket at the moment. Would a heating pad be a good idea?

post #2 of 6

I dont think it is necessary, if the isolating to the floor is decently good.

 

But it cant hurt you are prepared, so do get such a one.  You can always use it at some other occasion, if you dont use it now.

 

Why Im a little reluctant? Because too warmth is almost as dangerous as too cold.

SHE will probably want to have it warmth and cozy, most cats like it. So she will surely lie herself in the extra warm place.  But small kittens cant controll their body temp, and perhaps cant crawle out, if it is too warm.

 

Good luck!

post #3 of 6

  If the floor is cold  down there,  I think it is a good idea.      If it is on only part of the nest  as you mention ,  they can crawl away if they get too warm.  even newborn kittens can pull themselves along a bit. 

 

If it is a human heating pad make sure it is turned on the lowest setting,  wrap it in a towel well  and then I stuff inside a pillowcase or something like that.  because just the towel alone might come unwrapped.    

 

BTW when the kittens start moving around enough so that they can get out of the storage container,   you may need to put something else around the sides inside the dog cage, depending on what kind of bars it is and how close together,   because they might stick their head through the bars   and either get out that way and get into something,    or get stuck  and hurt themselves.  

post #4 of 6
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by maewkaew View Post

  If the floor is cold  down there,  I think it is a good idea.      If it is on only part of the nest  as you mention ,  they can crawl away if they get too warm.  even newborn kittens can pull themselves along a bit. 

 

If it is a human heating pad make sure it is turned on the lowest setting,  wrap it in a towel well  and then I stuff inside a pillowcase or something like that.  because just the towel alone might come unwrapped.    

 

BTW when the kittens start moving around enough so that they can get out of the storage container,   you may need to put something else around the sides inside the dog cage, depending on what kind of bars it is and how close together,   because they might stick their head through the bars   and either get out that way and get into something,    or get stuck  and hurt themselves.  


I got one that has 6 settings and placed it under the nesting box. It can't be reached by the cat or kittens as it is under the box itself, there is a thin blanket layer in the box. I've been testing it out today and it is just warm to the touch through the blanket. The cord is run through the back of the kennel far away from the water bowl.

 

As far as the bars on the kennel they appear to be about an 1 1/2ish". I did make baby bumpers to go around the inside of the kennels. My parents actually used a tent for the stray and kittens they took in a few years ago and said it worked out perfect. They still have that tent so I might move them once they start getting curious.

post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 

It wasn't getting warm enough under the nesting box so I had to switch it around. I took maewkaew's advice, wrapped it in a towel and put it into a pillowcase. I actually cut a hole in the pillowcase large enough for the cord and sewed the rest of it closed so there is no chance of unwrapping it. So it has two layers of towel, a pillowcase and a blanket on top of it. I felt it after half an hour and it was warm in the middle towards the back of the nesting box so there is plenty of room to move away from it need be.

 

I've never experienced the birth of kittens before the youngest I've had were five weeks old. I'm a little stressed lol, I know that most of the time things go smoothly it's just nerve racking waiting to see if they are healthy and that the momma is healthy and takes care of them. Thanks for the advice guys :)

 

You just watch, she'll probably have them next to the box and not in it.

post #6 of 6
That might be a good thing, though. Birthing kittens can be very messy. I'd have a back up box ready in case she has them in the box. My cat had 6 kittens, and went through 2 boxes in labor, and had to get into a third box once everything was done with. Otherwise they would have been sitting in a half inch of fluid.
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