It is mostly during spring that you will find that there is a rapid growth in the feline population. If you are among those who work with various "cat rescue" organizations or an animal lover who take care of cats, you will have noticed another trend. During the spring you will find abandoned kittens every now and then. As a cat lover we have a natural instinct of running to the rescue of a small kitten that seem abandoned.
But, the question is, is the kitten really abandoned?
Now, that is an important thing that you need to be sure of before you make the move. Chances are that the kitten just seems abandoned but it isn't truly. It is quite normal for the mother cat to leave the kitten alone for some time during the course of the day. We humans rarely let our babies out of sight, especially the newborn and very young ones. That is not the case with the cats. You need to keep this in mind and take the right steps after ensuring that the kitten is indeed in need of your care.
Before you become sure that a particular kitten is abandoned, there are a few things that you need to check. You need to follow the following steps once you spot a kitten that is probably abandoned. It will allow you ensure its safety as well as determine if the kitten is abandoned.
Step 1 - Do not act unless the kitten is in some immediate danger.
You need to know that there are times when the mother cat will be gone to collect food and the kitten will be on its own. The mother cat might even be keeping an eye on the kitten from a distance. Under any of these circumstances it is not advisable to man-handle the kitten. So, do not go ahead unless you find the kitten facing any immediate danger.
Step 2 - Keep an eye and observe the kitten for at least 12 to 18 hours before going ahead and taking charge of the situation.
If the kitten is a little grown up, then there are chances that the mother cat is simply gone for quite a long time but will return eventually. Cats know for how long the kitten will survive without the mother and it is the natural instinct that will bring the mother cat back. Clearly it is quite impossible to keep an eye for 12 to 18 hours at a stretch. So, you can sprinkle enough flour all around the kitten. The flour will have paw prints if the mother kitten comes back and you can remain in peace.
Step 3 - Do not panic is you find the kitten missing.
Check out the nearby areas if you are concerned, but chances are that the mother simply changed the location of the babies. It is quite normal for mother cats to do and it is good sign. It means that the kitten is being taken care of.
Step 4 - If the mother does not return even after prolonged wait, you can consider the kitten to be abandoned.
However, you will have to keep patience till then. Wait for a suitably long period just to be sure. Then go ahead and take care of the kitten. You might find the kitten to be highly agitated and distressed. Thus, it is important that you keep calm and give it comfort and a feeling of safety first.
How to take care of abandoned kitten?
Taking care of abandoned small kitten is no joke and if you decide to take care of the kitten then it is important that you follow the proper steps. You are the little one's mommy now and that is a huge responsibility.
If you are not ready to take on the job of taking care of the kitten full time, it is important that you find a foster home that will take in a small kitten. The smaller the kitten, harder it will be to find a foster home since the task is enormous and difficult.
Till the time you get a foster home for the abandoned kitten, or if you plan on raising the kitten on your own, a few important points will help you in the task of becoming the kitten's mom.
Small kittens generally can only have liquid diet. Check out proper kitten foods for different age groups. There are milk replacers available as well. Get the best kitten food as per the age of the kitten.
You will have to take the kitten to the vet regularly and have all the vaccination given. There is a complete growth chart of kittens available that will help you know if the kitten is growing up well. Remember, the growth of kitten is affected on being separated from the mother. Consult the vet and do not panic. Have a vaccination chart for the kitten ready.
Kittens love to play and needs to play too to be able to grow at a natural pace. Get good cat and kitten toys and give enough time and affection. You are filling in for the mother's absence. So, you will have to act like one. You can even make cat toys at home.
Taking care of a newborn or small kitten is a major task and responsibility. However, we also cannot seem to be able to resist the adorable, cuddly and cute little ones. So, if you have decided to raise the abandoned kitten by yourself, check out all the cat and kitten tips. Consult the vets. And you will be able to do the job just fine.