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Feline Ages & Life Stages
Kittens 5 Weeks To 8 Weeks: 1 Month Old
(2-4 Years Old In Human Years)
!! Here Comes Trouble !!
If you haven’t already, now is the time to “Kitten Proof” your home to keep it safe from these exploring toddlers. Kittens should not be allowed to explore beneath furniture, because a human sitting on a kitten stuck in a spring can be deadly. They need to be kept away from underfoot where people can step on them, and anything that could be a choking or poison hazard should be put away. Kittens should also be introduced to a belled collar, that way you can know where they are. This is the optimal time to socialize kittens with humans, and other kitten-safe pets.
Five Weeks Old: Introduce kittens to a high quality, soft kitten food, like Hill’s Prescription Diet Feline P/D in the canned form. They’ll be very messy eaters and need help to clean them up. Litter box habits are improving, but still need work, and use non-clumping cat litter in case overzealous kittens decide to play and eat the cat litter.
Six Weeks Old: It is time for a Veterinarian visit so that kittens can receive their first vaccinations and de-wormings. Kittens are starting to wean, and want to play all day! This is the best time to teach “play time manners” by introducing toys for the kittens to play with. Never allow a kitten to bite or scratch at your hands or feet! Introduce a scratching post, and put the kitten’s feet against the post, teaching it to scratch the post instead of you or furniture.
Seven Weeks Old: Introduce a brush to your kitten, and begin a grooming routine with them that involves brushing at least once a day. Brushing helps cats reduce their hairballs, and will keep your house cleaner. Keep socializing your kitten with frequent human contact.
Eight Weeks Old: If you haven’t gotten your kitten their first vaccinations, now is the time because the immunity passed on from mother to kitten through nursing is ending. Continue to reinforce with your kitten that playing is for toys, not hands or feet, and spend quality time with your kitten brushing them.
Feline Wellness: To prevent more litters, spaying mom now would be the best time. She will be spending less and less time with the kittens as her milk dries up, and they will be less likely to bother her incision site when they are completely weaned from her. Kittens will receive vaccination for Feline Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus, and Panleukopenia (FRVCP), as well as de-wormed because some intestinal parasites are passed from mother to kitten, as well as kittens eating poop at this stage.
Medical Concerns: Kittens this age are the most prone to injury from falls, being stepped on, getting trapped, poisonings, and eating objects, so make sure your house is kitten proof. Intestinal parasites such as roundworms and tapeworms can be given to people by kittens, so practice proper hygiene when cleaning litter boxes, and always wash your hands after handling your kitten. Kittens this age that are found as feral or abandoned kittens may also be very ill with the above mentioned feline diseases, and any kitten with puss and goop discharge from their eyes and/or nose need immediate medical attention.
If your cat needs medical attention, call 631-693-2400 right away!
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I want to thank Dr. Winkler and his staff. They are the most compassionate animal care center ever. And when we recently had to put our kitty down, no where else will you receive the compassion they show. God bless them for their kindness and caring hearts.