Oh, talking about newborn kitties, they’re just so adorable! From the moment they are born until they mature, the mere sight of them can easily put a smile in our faces. Then again, it is worth knowing that aside from our personal interests, kittens also have a set of needs to satisfy in order to grow into healthy, satisfied cats.
So, to give you a better idea about kittens, let’s explore some surprising facts about them.
1. On average, normal kittens weigh at least 3 ounces at birth.
When kittens are born, they weigh 3 or 4 ounces. As days pass, they immediately gain weight, approximately 4 ounces a week. That means, by the time they are a month old, they should be around 1 pound. They will continue gaining 1 pounder per month until they reach 6 months.
2. They are at risk for flea anemia.
Fleas are among the most common problems in dogs, but did you know they can be life-threatening to kitties? That is true. And because flea medications are unsafe for young kittens less than 2 months old, experts suggest bathing kitties with fleas using a mild dishwashing soap.
3. They become fully weaned at 8 weeks.
Like humans, mother cats slowly wean their babies off them. They do not push them away. Instead, they suggest politely that they should move on and not be dependent on them. But it is vital that during the first 2 months of a kitty’s life, she has to stay with her mother and her other siblings to better her socialization skills. If you take her away at a very young age, she might have a hard time dealing with other creatures.
4. After a month, they start to become playful.
In the first 10 days, kitties should be able to stand up on their own. 11 days after, they should be able to walk. By the time they reach 4 weeks, they start to flaunt their playful side. Sometimes, they play too rough with their other siblings, others stay cool.
5. A kitty’s baby teeth emerges after 3 weeks.
According to experts, the teeth of kittens start to emerge at 3 weeks. After 14 weeks, they begin to lose them, but grow their central incisors. Once they reach half a year, they already have adult teeth.
6. They cannot regulate body temperature.
During the first month of kittens, they still require a heat source like heating pads in a comfortable cat bed. Ideally, they need to be in a room with a temperature of 90 degrees Fahrenheit and 55 to 65 percent air humidity. They should also have enough space to stay away from the heat source as they normally crawl away to prevent burning themselves.
7. They carry with them an immune-boosting colostrum.
In the first 2 days of kitties, they receive colostrum from their mother, which contains life-saving antibodies that protect them from diseases. Without it, they become susceptible to various infections. After that, the umbilical cord will just drop off.
8. They are required to eat every two to three hours.
Although they do it naturally, baby kitties need to eat every 2-3 hours. But there are special cases where kittens have to be bottle fed. If that is the case, make sure to position them with their stomachs down to mimic a natural nursing position. After a month, you can feed them with solid food.
When kittens do not receive enough food, they may experience low blood sugar, threatening their lives. Also, hypoglycemia might become a big concern.
9. They cannot run to the bathroom by themselves.
This might sound strange, but kitties should be assisted and guided to go to the bathroom. By nature, it is the duty of the mother cat to lick the rear part of the kitty every after it releases its waste. So, you don’t have to worry. But if the mother is not around, that would be another case. You have to provide warmth to the area by wiping it with a warm, moist cloth or cotton ball.
10. They are born blind and deaf.
As with other baby animals, kittens are born blind and deaf. They begin to see light after 7 days and hear sounds after 10 days. Also, it is interesting to know that all kitties are born with blue eyes. The true color of their iris only shows after 2 months.
Aside from the fact that they purr so loud, there’s just so many things we should know about kittens. Perhaps you have already heard that a group of kitties is called kindle, but that’s only a small part. Again, everything about them is just so interesting that we might spend days talking about each one of them. So, if you enjoyed this post or if you have any questions about cats in general, please comment below!