Before separating a kitten from its mother, we must consider some details that are of the utmost importance for the correct physical and psychological development of the feline. Separating it quickly can lead to the appearance of behavioral problems and even serious nutritional deficiencies.
Although there is no exact date, usually a kitten is separated from its mother around the 8 or 12 weeks of life, an age that can vary according to the specific case.
In this article we will explain why it is so important to respect this time, we will help you identify the appropriate moment and we will explain how to carry it out. Keep reading and discover when you can separate the kittens from their mother:
Why should not we separate a kitten prematurely?
To really understand why it is not good to separate a kitten from its mother quickly, it is essential to review some basic aspects of a cat’s growth:
Breastfeeding, essential for proper development
Right after the birth of the litter, during the first two or three days, the mother will breastfeed them with the first milk that she produces, Colostrum. It is essential that any puppy receive it because, in addition to nourishing them abundantly, colostrum provides immunoglobulins, immune defenses that will protect you from any infection.
After this time, the cat will feed them with breast milk, a source rich in nutrients and that will also offer them some immunity to minimize the risk of infections. In addition, it also provides them with hormones, enzymes and other substances essential for its growth.
All kittens should feed on the milk produced by their progenitor, except in very specific cases, such as rejection, death or a disease of the mother that prevents them from taking care of them, only in these cases we should feed a kitten puppy, consulting always with the vet.
The importance of kitty socialization
From the second week of life and up to approximately two months, the kitten is mature enough to start exploring its environment and start their first social relationships. The kitten is in full “sensitive period of socialization“
During this stage, the cat learn to relate with members of his species, dogs, human beings, with the environment and, in short, with any external stimulus that will be frequent in his adult life. A well socialized cat will be sociable, friendly and will feel safe in its future environment, will be able to relate to all kinds of living beings and will not develop future behavior problems, such as aggressiveness, excessive shyness or others.
Tips to separate the cat from its mother
From the 4 weeks, and progressively, we should encourage our kitten to start weaning. For this we offer small portions of soft and soft food, such as wet food that comes prepared in pieces of meat or fish and pâté. You can find cans for puppies in the market.
During this stage they still depend on their mother, and it will not be until the 8 weeks of life when they will begin to feed regularly with this type of food.
When the cat is two months old, we will start offering you several daily rations of food, combining the wet food and the dry food. To ensure that they can eat it, we can soak the feed in fish broth without salt, which will provide them with flavor, extra nutrition and allow them to eat it without difficulty.
Finally, around the 12 weeks, the mother can continue to nurse the puppies, but it is the appropriate time for them to start eating on their own, destending them completely. At this time we will be sure that our cat will not suffer any nutritional deficiencies.
At this time and for ensure a good adaptation To your future home, it would be advisable to teach the kittens how to use the sandbox, as well as to teach them how to use the scraper. Everything you can learn, including games and various activities, will be positive for your mental stimulation and future fitness.
The separation of the kitten and its mother
Although they are weaned, we can not separate the kittens from their mother in a radical way since she could suffer a mastitis, an infection of the breasts due to the accumulation of milk. We must carry out the separation progressively, that is, separating the kittens from it one by one.
In principle, if we have waited until the 12 weeks of life, the progenitor will instinctively know that their puppies are independent and that they can survive, so it will be strange to suffer an episode of sadness. However, if we separate them before time, we can face a severe depression of the cat, which will look for the puppies at home in a desperate way. In these cases it will be highly recommended to wash the “nest” of the cat, as well as all utensils, blankets and cushions that can house their smell.
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