First Aid for Cats: Caring for a Newborn Kitten


Newborn kittens are fragile and need special attention, especially if you're raising them on your own. Kittens will need to be fed as soon as they open their eyes and begin nursing — usually within 24 hours of birth. The mother cat will know what to do for her newborns, but if she is not around or is unable to care for them properly (this might happen if she was injured during birth), then it's up to you!

The basics

If you find a stray kitten, the first thing to do is contact your local animal shelter or rescue organization. They will be able to give you advice on how to care for the kitten and where to take it, if necessary.

If you have decided that it's safe for you and your family to keep a stray kitten (and we hope that this is true!), then what follows are some tips on caring for newborns.

Caring For A Newborn Kitten: The Basics

  • Prepare your home before bringing home a new addition by thoroughly cleaning all surfaces where the cat may lay down or eat from--including pet beds! Also, make sure there are no dangerous objects lying around like electrical cords or small toys with small parts; these could pose choking hazards if ingested by accident.
  • Be sure there are enough litter boxes available; one per cat plus one extra.

How to bottle-feed a kitten

  • Warm the formula to room temperature by placing the bottle in warm water for 5 minutes.
  • Shake the bottle gently to mix it thoroughly, then remove it from the heat and allow it to cool completely before you give it to your kitten.
  • Hold your newborn kitten securely but gently, with its head resting on a towel placed under it (a folded blanket or pillow also works well). Place an eyedropper inside its mouth, or use a baby bottle nipple that fits securely in its mouth, then squeeze some milk into its mouth until it starts swallowing reflexively; this usually takes only about 1/4 teaspoon at first! Do not force more than this into them at one time; if they are struggling too much with breathing after drinking their first few swallows of formula or milk mixture then stop feeding immediately - try again later when they have calmed down somewhat after being fed once already successfully without any difficulties whatsoever being experienced during either procedure.

What if the kitten is not nursing?

If the kitten does not nurse, you may have to feed it with a bottle. Gently try to get the kitten to nurse from your finger by mimicking how its mother would do this. If that doesn't work, try feeding with a tube (available at pet stores).

If you can't get the kitten to nurse or if it doesn't respond well after trying several times over several days, call a veterinarian for advice.

You'll also need to clean out its bedding every day because newborns tend not only to urinate frequently but also pass meconium (the intestinal contents) shortly after birth--both of which smell terrible!

How to prepare for kittens in the house

  • Make sure your kitten has a litter box.
  • Make sure you have enough food and water bowls.
  • Make sure you have a scratching post.
  • You'll also want some small litter scoops so that when they're done with their business in the box (or if they accidentally get some of their poop on themselves), it's easy for us humans to clean up after them without having to touch anything gross ourselves...

Other ways of feeding a sick or injured kitten

Other ways of feeding a sick or injured kitten include:

  • Feeding the kitten a special kitten food. This is usually recommended for kittens that are at least 2 weeks old and have been weaned from their mother's milk.
  • Feeding the kitten a special kitten milk replacer. This must be given by syringe and should only be used if your veterinarian says it's okay, as it can be difficult to digest and may cause diarrhea if not mixed properly with water before feeding it to your cat.
  • Feeding the kitten a special formula made especially for kittens who cannot take solid foods yet due to illness or injury (this includes cats that were born prematurely). These formulas come in liquid form which you can feed through an eyedropper into your cat's mouth; they might also come as powders or gels that dissolve quickly when mixed with water--either way works fine!

Dealing with diarrhea in a new newborn kitten

Diarrhea is a common occurrence in kittens. It can be caused by a number of things, including parasites and viruses. If your kitten has diarrhea, you should call the vet right away.

Diarrhea occurs when there is too much fluid passing through the intestines and into the stool. When this happens, it becomes harder for your kitten's body to absorb nutrients from food because they can't be absorbed properly into its bloodstream if they're mixed with liquid instead of being solid matter like normal stool would be (which is why cats are carnivores). If this continues for too long or gets worse over time due to improper care from owners who don't know how important it is not only for young animals but also adults alike--especially those who may already have health issues such as diabetes mellitus IIB: type 1 diabetes mellitus --then we could see potentially fatal consequences such as dehydration leading up towards death itself!

How to clean up after your kitten has had diarrhea

  • Change the litter box daily.
  • Clean around the area where your kitten has been using a disinfectant designed for use on cat feces and urine.
  • Make sure to wash your hands after cleaning up the mess, as it can contain harmful bacteria that can cause infections in humans if they come into contact with them.
  • Bleach and ammonia should not be used when cleaning up after diarrhea as these chemicals may be dangerous for cats to ingest or breathe in when cleaning up their waste products (bleach is corrosive). They also don't actually kill germs very well anyway! Instead, try using diluted hydrogen peroxide or baking soda mixed with water instead--both work well at getting rid of odors too!

Kittens should be handled gently, but you need to learn how to care for your new addition.

You need to learn how to care for your new addition.

The first thing you should do is clean up after your kitten has had diarrhea. If you notice that their litter box is messy, put on gloves and scoop out the feces with a plastic bag or paper towel. Then, use warm water and soap (or another pet-safe cleaning solution) to wipe down all surfaces where they may have vomited or urinated as well as their bedding (like blankets). If this doesn't work, try using hydrogen peroxide instead--but be careful not to get it into their eyes!


You can't just leave a newborn kitten alone in the house and expect it to take care of itself. You need to learn how to feed it, clean up after it, and keep an eye out for signs of illness or injury. If you have any questions or concerns about caring for your new addition, don't hesitate to call your veterinarian!


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