Newborn kittens are fragile and usually need adequate care to survive. These tips will help you as a caregiver for kittens.
Provide heat and bedding for Neonatal kittens
Kittens are easily predisposed to cold and it could be life-threatening due to their inability to control their body temperature until they are about 3 weeks old. They should be provided with a soft bedding/nest with a heating pad which should be completely wrapped up with a towel. Alternatively, a heat source can be provided in a corner of the room but the heat must be monitored.
Feeding Newborn Kittens
The queen will feed the kittens naturally except there is an underlying disease. In a situation where the queen is dead or ill, kittens should be hand raised and bottle-fed. Kitten milk replacer can be used and it is readily available in most pet stores. Feeding kittens with goat or cow milk usually causes diarrhoea. If milk would be used at all, evaporated milk is suitable.
Feeding frequency for newborn kittens:
1-10 days old should be fed every 2 hours around the clock.
11 days to 2 weeks should be fed 3-4 hours
2 weeks to 4 weeks every 5-6 hours
4 weeks and older every 2-3 hours
Kittens that are 4 weeks old or younger need stimulation to pass out poo and urine. If the queen is around, she would stimulate them herself but if the kittens are not raised by the queen, warm tissue or soft cloth material should be used to rub the anal area after feeding to help them excrete.
Signs like-colored discharge from the nose, eyes, difficulty breathing, diarrhea, presence of fleas, reduced appetite, or general inactivity suggests that the kittens are ill and medical attention should be sought immediately.