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Cats/Raising Orphaned Newborn Kittens


Hi Norman,
I have found 4 orphaned newborn kittens outside my house a week ago, 1 among them died last day (age- approx. 5-8 days). Can you please inform me or give me an idea about why the kitten died? I am giving you a glimpse of the kittenís condition: It was so weak that day. It didnít have the energy to squeak like the other kittens had. One thing was other kittens often suckled its ears. Suddenly I saw some sticky fluid coming out from its mouth. And the poor kitten couldnít move that much. I fed her saline (pedialyte formula got from a website- water boiled 2 cups+ sugar 5 tea spn + salt ľ tea spn). But it didnít work and she died that night.
Now the other 3 kittens are 1 week old (may be). I am feeding them yogurt with warm water (1 ml per feed) 4 times a day (as you mentioned in a post- ďA good feeding regimen for week old kittens is 4 times a day ,e.g. midnight, 7:00 AM, 1:00 PM, 7:00 PMĒ ). Also feeding them saline mixed with their kitten formula (as I have doubt of dehydration). Do you think I am following the right way to raise these newborn kittens? Will the kittens survive?
Another question- when do a newborn orphaned kitten starts to poop?
1 of the kittens pooped today for the first time (she is 7-10 days old may be). Her poop is mustard colored and looks like paste. Other didnít poop yet (they are peeing only).
Thank you.


You are an angel, taking care of these orphan kittens.  It is almost impossible to tell exactly why newborns die, so I have no idea.  It is possible it aspirated while feeding and ended up with pneumonia.

Anyway, the goal is to get these kittens to about 3-4 weeks of age after which you can begin weaning them and get them onto solid food.  Kittens will poop about once a day while nursing (once they start). Different kittens grow at different rates, so I would not worry if some of them begin pooping a day or two or three after the first one begins.

Are you weighing the kittens to see how quickly they are growing? I believe I listed guidelines for amounts to feed by body weight along with the feeding times. If not, please follow up and I will give you those.

Please let me know how things are going.

Best regards... Norm.


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Norman Auspitz


I can answer most non-veterinary questions about cats. My particular expertise is pedigree cats, breeding and showing. However, I am versed in feline behavior, cat breeds and their characteristics, general feline husbandry, and the like.


I judged for the Canadian Cat Association from 1975 until 1982. I am currently an approved allbreed judge for the Cat Fanciers'' Association (the world''s largets cat registry), and have been judging for them since 1991. I have been breeding pedigreed cats since 1971 and have been exhibiting pedigreed cats in shows since 1970. I obtained my first pedigreed cat in 1970 and have never looked back. In 1971, I obtained my first Abyssinian which has become my primary breed. In addition, I have bred Manx and Persians. Currently, besides the Abyssinians, I am also breeding Maine Coons.

Cat Fanciers'' Association, inc. (CFA) and the Manx, Maine Coon, and Abyssinian breed councils. I am currently Abyssinian breed council secretary.

Cat Fancy Magazine, The Abyssinian Chapter in The Cat Fanciers'' Association Complete Cat Book, and Articles for various editions of The Cat Fanciers'' Association Yearbook

I received a B.S. from Drexel University in 1968, a M.Math from University of Waterloo, in 1970, a Ph.D. from University of Waterloo in 1975, and a MBA from McMaster University in 1980. I received my approved allbreed judging status in the Cat Fanciers'' Association in 1999.

Awards and Honors
We have produced a number of Cat Fanciers'' Association (CFA) National winning Abyssinian and Maine Coons. We have produced a number of Abyssinian and Maine Coon Distinguished Merit females (an award for a top producing cat), including the first Distinguished Merit Abyssinian in the red (sorrel) color. I am the CFA Abyssinian breed council secretary and belong and/or hold office in a number of cat clubs. I am also a member of the CFA Judges Association.

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