Feeding a kitten
A cat under a year old is a growing kitten. The first year of life is a delicate period of growth for a kitten, as it lays the foundation for a healthy adult life. If you are considering getting a kitten, you should familiarise yourself with cat care and your kitten's needs well in advance. A kitten needs a lot of attention and time to develop into a balanced and healthy pet.
What food for a kitten?
Feeding plays an important role in a kitten's health. Mother cat’s milk is the primary food for kittens until 5–6 weeks of age, although kittens start to taste solid food around 3 weeks of age. The mother weans the kittens gradually, and kittens are ready for adoption at 14 weeks of age.
Cats are obligate carnivores whose body does not make much use of carbohydrates. For a growing kitten, a meaty diet with specifically animal-based proteins is very important. A growing cat also needs fat and a balanced calcium and phosphorus ratio. The cat's body requires certain essential amino acids, such as taurine and arginine, which it only gets from meat. Complete dog foods are not suitable for cats, as they have lower animal-based protein content than foods designed for cats. The cat's thirst drive is naturally weak, because in nature the cat would get water mostly from the prey animals it eats. Find out how you can support your cat's hydration.
The carefully formulated nutritional content of the PrimaCat Kitten dry food helps to secure the growth of the kitten's muscles and bones and supports the kitten's immune system. Wheat-free and corn-free PrimaCat Kitten dry food is also ideal for mother cats to give them an extra boost during the heavy gestation and lactation period.
Tips for feeding your kitten
Kitten feeding should be based on high-quality complete cat foods to ensure your cat gets enough energy and nutrients for growth.
We recommend a high-quality wet food for the kitten's main food, which meets the cat's natural nutritional needs. PrimaCat Classic Turkey in Gravy for Kittens contains omega-3 fatty acids that support the development of the kitten's nervous system and vision, and provides an excellent foundation for healthy growth and development.
If you want to give your kitten kibble, half of the kitten's daily food can be PrimaCat Kitten dry food and the other half PrimaCat Classic wet food so the kitten gets enough hydration. As long as at least half of the kitten's food is cat food designed especially for kittens, the other half can also consist of Classic wet food for adult cats. However, with a kitten that will grow bigger than an average house cat as an adult, you should focus on feeding foods that are designed for kittens.
From time to time, you can also offer your kitten supplementary foods such as PrimaCat Soup and Fillets or raw food.
Keep food freely available for your kitten or provide frequent small meals. A kitten should eat several small meals a day. Read more about the cat's natural diet.
Check the cat food packaging to make sure the food you are giving does not contain hidden sugar. Added sugar can be detrimental to a cat's health and getting used to a sugary cat food can make it difficult to switch to a healthier alternative later.
Get your kitten used to different foods
You should introduce different foods to the kitten. Feeding a cat as an adult can be easier if the cat has already learnt to eat both dry and wet food as a kitten, and foods of different textures and tastes. A cat's pickiness is often caused by the cat getting used to a certain type of food. Moreover, cats are typically very suspicious of new foods. Getting a picky cat used to a new food as an adult can be difficult, but it is not impossible. Read our tips on how to feed a picky cat.
Always make changes to your kitten's diet gradually, as a sudden change in the diet can easily cause digestive problems.
How much does a kitten eat?
The best way to find the right amount of food for your cat is to experiment. Feeding charts on cat food packages give guidelines to plan the appropriate amount of food. Keep an eye on your cat's body condition so the cat won’t gain too much weight. Find out more about feeding a cat.
Kittens are usually very active and play a lot. Adult cats often become less active on their own, which is why it is important to provide a variety of stimuli, especially for adult indoor cats.
How long does a cat eat kitten food?
Kittens continue to grow until they are about 1 year old. Although a cat might look like a full-grown adult before it is a year old, a kitten needs to be fed proper food for kittens until it reaches adulthood. You can gradually replace the food of a one-year-old cat with adult cat food. A cat that grows bigger than an average house cat may need kitten food for even longer. See our instructions how to change your cat's food.
PrimaCat cat foods have been developed to meet the natural nutritional needs of cats. You can find our products conveniently at your grocery shop.