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Scrawny (but Healthy) Foster Kittens

Sara KangSara Kang Member Posts: 403
edited 6 June, 2009 in Food & Nutrition
Hi Catsters, Meowmy fostered her first baby kitten litter recently, and they are still so small. She needs them to beef up so she can get them fixed and adopted! hehe The foster coordinator said they might just be small kittens. They turn 8 weeks this week, and yet, they are the size of 6 week old kittens. Just so you know, they were taken from their feral momma at about 3.5 weeks old, and took immediately to canned food. I'm supplementing them w/an L-lysine paste, but is there anything I can do other than giving more canned food? I already feed them 3 times a day, and give them dry food for late night munchies. They eat really well, but they are just so skinny. You can feel their bones and ribs, and they've been dewormed w/Nemex. They had really bad diarrhea for several weeks, and were vaccinated last week. She can't give Drontal until they're over 1.5 pounds, and they're not quite there yet. Any thoughts on how to get them to gain some weight?


  • Cecilia CretaroloCecilia Cretarolo PortlandMember Posts: 267
    edited 26 May, 2009
    Can you feed them raw at all? Giving them raw poultry and pork will give them more nutrients that they can use compared to any commercial food. Even if it's only half of the whole diet, it should help a lot. Just be sure to include lots of fatty meats such as dark poultry with the skin on and pork shoulder. If you want to make it more than half of their diet, you'll have to include raw chicken and game hen bones (with meat attached) as 10% of the raw meals and secreting organs such as liver and kidneys for another 10%. Since they're so young, they should have no problems with you switching their diet around a bit.
  • BROOKE LOWRYBROOKE LOWRY TampaMember Posts: 6,037
    edited 26 May, 2009
    Tabitha, I love Hermes\' suggestion. I\'d also like to suggest that you eliminate the dry food. Unless you do not have or are not running the AC, you should be able to put out a small amount of wet food for them to eat overnight if you so choose. Nutrical is another thing that might do them some good. It\'s a high calorie paste that is quite palatable.
  • Sara KangSara Kang Member Posts: 403
    edited 6 June, 2009
    Raw is not an option for my furbies, much less my fosters. I found out today that it is Giardia. One of the kittens I adopted tested positive for it, so now they'll be getting Flagyl. The vet told us to feed less wet, but i won't do that as they need to fatten up to get fixed before adoption. We're close but no cigar... This diarrhea problem has been non-stop since I had these fosters! Arg!
  • Cecilia CretaroloCecilia Cretarolo PortlandMember Posts: 267
    edited 6 June, 2009
    I have to admit I find the vet's advice strange. Feeding more wet food will be better in the long run since it will help with preventing dehydration. Ask the vet if there's a valid medical reason for you to feed kibble only. There shouldn't be one and you should be able to spot hogwash when you hear it. Putting the vet on the spot might be embarrassing for both parties but will let him/her know that you won't take advice without a reasonable explanation. Since you do know what the problem is now, you should be able to keep their diet the same and see results from the medication soon. Hermes had horrible diarrhea for the first month that I had him before I switched him to raw so I know how you feel. Just keep on reminding yourself that it will be over soon.
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