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VERY skinny and I'm scared

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 
Ok..I've been noticing this one kitten is really skinny compared to the rest. The rest are really aggressive and five for a tit. But this one can't get by!! Is there a bottle I can get a kitten and mixture stuff so I can bottle feed it before it dies?
post #2 of 28
Try putting some karo syrup or sugar water on the little one's gums. Sugar is instant energy... it may help the kitten get the motivation to nurse.

If the kitten won't nurse from mom, the other kittens are pushing it away, or the mom has rejected it, call your vet about KMR (kitten milk replacement). Your vet should be able to provide information on where to find it and how to feed (via kitten-sized bottle). You can supplement what it's getting from its mom that way.

If you can encourage the little one to nurse from its mom, that is naturally the best. But if the kitten is skinny... bad sign... ask a vet. You might weigh all the kittens and give the vet their weights and ages.
post #3 of 28
I would suggest calling the vets office for KMR or kitten formula, and try supplementing. I have had better luck with a syringe (no needle!), and just drip the formula into the kitties mouth. Another thing that can help is taking the bigger, more aggressive kitties away for a few minutes to give the little guy a chance to nurse.

It may be something wrong with the kitten, unfortunately. But if it just needs a little extra to start....I had one little guy in my last litter, and supplemented him with formula twice daily. He grew up just fine! My current litter had one kitten fall behind, she has already caught up and no longer looks or feels skinny.

Best of luck with your kittens!
post #4 of 28
oh i really hope the lil one pulls through. Big huggs to you and your baby, and seding you warm thoughts.
post #5 of 28
What age are the kittens? Does the kitten show any signs of diarrhea?

I would also recommend putting Karo syrup on the gums for a jumpstart, and also you could try placing him on a teat while the others are sleeping, so that he is still getting the nutrients from Momma's milk. The other times supplement him, and weigh him daily, he should be gaining about 10 grams a day.
Is the kitten dehydrated? You can check by pulling up the skin on the scruff of the neck and see if it goes back or stays pulled up a lilttle. If he is dehydrated, you will need to either give him some pedialyte diluted with 50% water or if he is very weak, he will need sub-q fluids from your vet.
Around 3-4 weeks old is a good time to begin deworming. The store bought brands, I don't believe are very effective or safe. I recommend Strongid, you can take in a stool sample to your vet.
Good luck, we hope he begins feeling better soon.
post #6 of 28
Thread Starter 
It is 2 days old. The other ones are so big compared to this little one. I stayed up till 2 worrying about her. My mom warmed up some whole milk and got a syringe since we did not have a bottle and fade her some. (No signs of diharea) I told my mom about it and told her to call the vet and see if they had kitten bottles or something like that. She hasn't got a hold of them yet.
post #7 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Beckiboo
I would suggest calling the vets office for KMR or kitten formula, and try supplementing. I have had better luck with a syringe (no needle!), and just drip the formula into the kitties mouth. Another thing that can help is taking the bigger, more aggressive kitties away for a few minutes to give the little guy a chance to nurse.

It may be something wrong with the kitten, unfortunately. But if it just needs a little extra to start....I had one little guy in my last litter, and supplemented him with formula twice daily. He grew up just fine! My current litter had one kitten fall behind, she has already caught up and no longer looks or feels skinny.

Best of luck with your kittens!
I've tried this, me and mom pulled every kitten away because they are all aggressive and wont let this one feed, Tysen is getting fat cuz hes so aggressive at feeding. Once we pulled them all away the cat has no time to feed...then we tried putting them in a seperate box and running away with it but the mom gets to anxious because she hears the screams of the kittens and I think we should go to the vet but mom's not hear. We need to go ASAP though.
post #8 of 28
Thread Starter 
But I just then knew that some cats have diffuclty digesting cow's milk so ...I'm so sad right now.
post #9 of 28
huggs, start supplimenting the lil one. I hope he pulls through.
post #10 of 28
Thread Starter 
The kitten got a bit fatter with the whole cows milk and the mother is not rejecting it btw. Just the fat cats are fiesty and the mom treats em' all the same
post #11 of 28
Feeding with a syringe sometimes works better than a bottle anyhow. At 2 days old, I don't know what the vet could do, except give fluids. I think keeping him with the litter, but pulling him out for kitten formula is the best choice. Call your local pet stores, and see if any carry kitten formula. Then you can ask your Mom to pick some up on the way home.

I have had trouble getting a weaker kitten to nurse, also. Sometimes taking one or two fat ones away to encourage the little one might help...but supplementing with a little formula lets you know for sure how much they are getting.
post #12 of 28
Thread Starter 
Do vets carry these? Well I live a few miles from petsmart I guess I should check.
post #13 of 28
Yes, vets have them, as does PetSmart. And there's a recipe for kitten glop on the boards, and it's just stuff you get at the store like gelatin and evaporated milk. But I don't think Cow's milk is all that good for them. Even Whiskas catmilk would be better than that. (BTW, my kitties loved Whiskas catmilk, but I don't think a lot of people on the board recommend it. But it's better than nothing.)
post #14 of 28
Thread Starter 
Good news I called petsmart and asked if they have formual and they have formula and bottles. I'm just scared for my kitten right now because hopefully the cows milk didn't have a really bad effect on the little one because I read it's bad for people to substitue a cats milk to cows milk. But my mom and I are going to stop by petsmart today and get a bottle and formula.
post #15 of 28
I had to formula feed one of the kittens out winters last litter. i found that the syringe works not the bottle until they are older. I only paid like 2.00 for some formula and my vet gave me a bottle and syringe for free. I hope this helps. also you can pick up some formula at a lot of depertment stores also. good luck. keep us updated on the little one.

Lisa
post #16 of 28
Thread Starter 
We bot a bottle that feeds small animals from dogs to squireels and kittens. We read the directions ..use a hot needle and let it cool and poke a hole on the latex, we poke holes and it still wouldn't give milk, the plastic syringe works way better We are using KMR and it is working great. I fed him/her at 3 so I guess I will feed the llittle on at 6 or 7
post #17 of 28
Do not feed it cow's milk. It's not just diarreah, they can't digest it well and might make them feel worse. At the end of this post I've given you a recipe for something you can give him that's better for him.

To help the kitten get used to nursing, try to rub it's nose back and forth over a nipple, that's what the kittens do to find it and that natural movement might help him catch on. Just putting him there might not be enough. They need to feel it with their nose and mouth, and I think the tiny drop of milk that might get on their lips or nose helps stimulate their appetite also.

In the meantime, do try the KMR also. You can even find a brand of kitten milk replacement at Walmart, most of them carry it in the pet supply dept. Call some of your local pharmacies (the large ones like CVS), might even find that in their pet dept (although not as likely).

Make up this mixture and give this to the kitten until you get the KMR. It is suggested you don't use the homemade version for more than 1 day so get the other as soon as you can:

INGREDIENTS:
* 12 oz can evaporated milk
* 1/2 cup water
* 1 egg yolk
* 1 tsp kayro syrup
* 1-2 drops of vitamins
(This has a very short shelf life)
If you don't have the vitamins, at least make up the rest and get the kmr as soon as possible. There are more complicated kitten glop recipes, but most people have these ingredients around the house. It's what I use to get one of my kittens nursing, and it worked, and she started to nurse, and was perfectly fine after that once she got the hang of it.

I also just learned two new things while searching for the kitten glop recipe. One, is that goats milk is a better emergency food than cow's milk (again, until you can get kmr) and also learned that sometimes a dose of antibiotics from the vet can get a kitten who won't eat to start eating. It seems it can often be caused by a digestive track infection.

If you do feed him, don't forget to burp him!
post #18 of 28
Thread Starter 
Sorry you had to type all this up lol We are using KMR, it's working alright
post #19 of 28
I'm glad it's working, but try a few times a day to get him back to nursing normally from his mother. That is best and the mother's milk has antibodies the kmr does not have.

It should be used as a supplement if you have a healthy, nursing mother, just until you can get the kitten to start nursing from Mom full time and you can stop the KMR.

If you feed it competely with KMR it will never be hungry enough to try and nurse from Mom.

Mom's milk and nursing is better for the kitten not only physically, but emotionally too.
post #20 of 28
Thread Starter 
I don't think it can find the nipple...it passes it and just drops. It's very frustrating. Even when I take all the other 5 kittens out the little one does the same. When do kittens eyes open? When the little one's eyes open then I know it will probably be able to go without the KMR. But right now I am gonna have to keep the little one on the KMR till he/she's eyes open. Or else it will starve to death.
post #21 of 28
Eyes open... eh, about 7-10 days, latest two weeks. Their eyesight isn't perfect right away, though.

Once your kitten has got chubby enough, try delaying a feeding by half an hour or so, then taking the others so it's motivated to nurse...

Maybe the kitten has trouble sucking? Does its mouth and tongue look normal? No milk bubbling out of the nose when it drinks, right? (That would be sign of cleft palate... )
post #22 of 28
I think the ideal is for baby to nurse from Momma...however, I believe that by giving KMR by syringe you have changed this kittens chance for survival from 0%, to a good chance. Know that you are doing a wonderful thing.

If you pull baby from Momma to give it KMR every three hours, then put him back, I think there is still a chance he will learn to nurse, and be strong enough to nurse with the other babies. And even if you have to keep giving formula, at least he will be warm with the other babies, and Momma will keep him clean.

You may be surprised at how strong he becomes once he is fed a few times, he may be able to fight for a nipple with the other babies.

Sometimes kittens without a Mom will suck on each other, because the urge to nurse is so strong. I hope your baby does this, and is able to nurse soon. I would still keep weighing him, and giving some KMR feedings until you are sure he is getting enough!

This thread just warms my heart and makes me proud to be a member of TheCatSite. Your love for the kitten, combined with our advice, and your Mom's willingness to get the supplies needed=a healthy kitten!
post #23 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Beckiboo
I think the ideal is for baby to nurse from Momma...however, I believe that by giving KMR by syringe you have changed this kittens chance for survival from 0%, to a good chance. Know that you are doing a wonderful thing.

If you pull baby from Momma to give it KMR every three hours, then put him back, I think there is still a chance he will learn to nurse, and be strong enough to nurse with the other babies. And even if you have to keep giving formula, at least he will be warm with the other babies, and Momma will keep him clean.

You may be surprised at how strong he becomes once he is fed a few times, he may be able to fight for a nipple with the other babies.

Sometimes kittens without a Mom will suck on each other, because the urge to nurse is so strong. I hope your baby does this, and is able to nurse soon. I would still keep weighing him, and giving some KMR feedings until you are sure he is getting enough!

This thread just warms my heart and makes me proud to be a member of TheCatSite. Your love for the kitten, combined with our advice, and your Mom's willingness to get the supplies needed=a healthy kitten!
Yeah we are doing everything we can and not leaving one cat behind. The babys were born on wednesday (at 1 in the morning) So I guess we have a few days to keep the little one on the KMR. We do feed every 3 hours and I am sacraficing my lunch money to feed this guy (mom hasnt got paid yet) Thnx for the kind words
post #24 of 28
You don't have to take it completely off the KMR, just try to get it to eat from Mom first, and then supplement it.

Cats and kittens are lazy. They sometimes need a bit of motivation. lol

Keep trying, and don't bother to take the other kittens out. Just lay down with them while they're nursing and keep placing the baby close to an open nipple, and gently slide it's head and mouth over the nipple.

If it doesn't takie it, try again. And if possible, do it over the same nipple. Eventually she'll get it. But the idea is to try it first before giving it the KMR so it's hungry while you do it.

Are you buying the cans of KMR already made up, or the powder? The powder is a lot cheaper and lasts a lot longer. You might find one can will do it. If you've already bought a bunch of the cans of pre-mixed, if they're unopened, I'm sure the store will take them back.

If you are near a wal-mart, they sell it also (the Hartz brand I think) and you might find it less expensive.

Even if it only gets a little of Mom's milk, that's better than nothing because there are antibodies in mother's milk that are not in the KMR that help them fight infection and keeps them healthier (the reason for mother's milk being better all around).

Good luck, and you're doing great!
post #25 of 28
Thread Starter 
Oh we used the pre-mix. We only bought one can and we have enough for about...2 or 3 more feedings. When we go to petsmart later tomorrow we will buy the powder one.
post #26 of 28
you might try putting a drop of KMR on momma cat's nipple and put the little one up to it

that works sometimes it really depends on the kitten

I just want to say I think you are doing a great thing!!!

keep us updated!!
post #27 of 28
Thread Starter 
Every feeding time I take out the little guy and he cries and I just sing over the cry so the mom won't come out while she is feeding the other 5. My mom caught me doing this and (singing and running with the kitten) It was hilarious but anyway I finally got to a point where I can hold the syringe and the cat so he/she is not struggling. He/She is doing pretty well. I see the little one gained some weight
post #28 of 28
You're running and singng loud with the kitten? You need to be more careful. This is not a good thing.

They are very delicate and if you trip or drop it you can cause a lot of damage. You're also scaring it and you're scaring the mother, and therefore all the rest of the kittens. You need them to be calm and secure if you want them all to thrive.

Please understand that stress can be just as big a problem for kittens and queens as any illness.

You need to be quiet, gentle and very careful. Also, how are you holding her when you are feeding her? Like a baby or on her stomach?

Once she's taking the bottle she shouldn't be crying. You have to be careful not to scare her. Scaring her can not only make the kitten skittish and stressed out, but it's the same for the mother. You don't want her ending up abandoning all her kittens because of this, and a cat abandoning kittens , or even killing them, because they feel they might be in danger is not all that uncommon. And what we consider danger and what they consider danger are very different things.

When you feed her you should do it right near the Mom, while you're sitting or laying on the floor, with the kitten on its stomach on a towel. And in sight of the mother. Or even better, give it the bottle right in the box while it's with the mother while the kitten is stomach down.

If you hold it like a baby it can choke.

The idea of putting some kmr on a nipple and moving her face to it is a great idea.

By now, if the kitten is taking a bottle, she should also be able to nurse from Mom. Please do not try to keep feeding her just because you enjoy it. You have to think of the kitten and queens welfare first. You really need to do everything you can to get her back to her mother and feeding from her normally at least for most of her nutrients, and weaning her off the bottle. Everything you can.

Would you do this with a newborn human baby? Would the mother let you?
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