Author: Dr. Juon Abbass, DVM M.Phil
Nutrition plays an important role in the overall well-being of a kitten. Many owners prefer keeping a bowl filled with dry kitten food available the entire day In front of a new kitten. However, it is good to get a proper feeding schedule for a kitten as it helps in maintaining the health of your kitten. Owners ask about how many times a kitten should eat. And some related questions.
In this article, we will discuss the feeding frequency in kittens under the light of general field experience.
Note: A well-designed feeding schedule is key to manage the weight of the kitten. Also feeding schedule must be designed according to the age of the kitten.
How Many Times A Day Should A Kitten Eat?
Generally talking, in beginning, a kitten should be fed thrice in a day. Usually, experts suggest the feeding of a kitten in the morning, afternoon, and evening. Now, it is up to the owner to choose a particular time during the morning, afternoon, and evening according to his/her work schedule/routine.
*This feeding pattern is ideal for kittens under the age of six months.
Distribution of meals throughout the day
For a healthy diet, every kitten owner should take into account that the kitten’s meals are divided over the day.
Evenly distribute the calories in the morning, afternoon, and evening. This partition of calories will help in the weight management of your kitten and introduce good feeding habits in him. You can talk to a pet nutritionist in this regard. Automated feeders/drinkers can also be considered.
Note: The type and quality of kitten’s food are important factors to be considered. Try to choose a high-quality, vet-recommended kitten’s diet. The supreme quality foods require less serving size and give essential nutrients to your growing kitten. This is important to stay in touch with an experienced pet nutritionist and go according to his/her guidelines.
Frequently Asked Questions About How Many Times A Day Should A Kitten Eat?
Can I over-feed my kitten?
Many owners provide free-food access to kittens. However, this is not so bad but it may create stomach issues (diarrhea in kittens when just weaning) and weight gain in kittens. Remember, this strategy works well in a few early weeks of a newborn kitten.
When to scale down the feeding frequency of the kitten?
From the age of three months to six months, you must feed your kitten three times a day. But as your kitten reaches above six, reduce the feeding frequency to twice a day.
Why my kitten is always craving food?
Kittens are fast growers. Their metabolism is faster and they quickly burn the energy. So, they always feel hungry.
How should I offer dry and wet food to my kitten?
This is a critical thing that you must know. Try to give dry and wet food in well-defined proportions (As per the recommendation) of the vet. Don’t give wet food alone as it doesn’t contain a greater amount of nutrients.
Note: Kittens under the age of six weeks should get the mother’s milk ad-libitum. If the mother is unable to do so, then you can feed the kitten with the help of a bottle.
GENERAL GUIDELINES: How Many Times A Day Should A Kitten Eat?
|Five- twelve weeks||Four times/day|
|Twelve –six months||Three times/day|
|Six months above||Two times/day|
|Above one year(adult)||One or two times/day|
Note: This is a general guideline; you can seek further information from your vet.
Lawler, D.F., 2008. Neonatal and pediatric care of the puppy and kitten. Theriogenology, 70(3), pp.384-392.
Camara, A., Verbrugghe, A., Cargo-Froom, C., Hogan, K., DeVries, T.J., Sanchez, A., Robinson, L.E. and Shoveller, A.K., 2020. The daytime feeding frequency affects appetite-regulating hormones, amino acids, physical activity, and respiratory quotient, but not energy expenditure, in adult cats fed regimens for 21 days. Plos one, 15(9), p.e0238522.
Peterson, M.E., 2011. Care of the Orphaned Puppy and Kitten. In Small Animal Pediatrics (pp. 67-72). WB Saunders.
Birkbeck, R., Donaldson, R. and Chan, D.L., 2020. Nutritional management of a kitten with thermal burns and septicaemia. Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery Open Reports, 6(1), p.2055116920930486.