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I have 2 female cats who have had litters of kittens within a month of each other (first litter is now 11 weeks old, second litter is 8 weeks) they nurse each others kittens and are still producing milk. A friend of mine's cat had a litter of kittens yesterday and within a couple hours was hit by a car and killed leaving behind 4 babies. She brought them here today in hopes that one of my cats would take on the role of surrogate mom but neither of them are the least bit interested and even hiss when the babies try to nurse. They don't try to harm the babies, just hiss and get up and walk away. What can I do to help them adjust to the new additions and nurse them?


Since your two females have litters that are much older than your friend's kittens I suspect that you'll need to bottle raise the newborn kittens because it's quite common for queens to decide not to accept foster kitten that are significantly younger and/or smaller than their own. You can certainly use a clean washcloth to wipe down the kittens in your litters then rub down the newborns and offer them to one or both mommas - perhaps having them smell like their own babies will increase the chances that one or both moms will take on some or all of the kittens. I would say that for the moment bottle feeding every couple of hours and trying off and on to see if either of your queens will accept the babies for the next couple of days is worth a shot, but I wouldn't suggest getting your hopes up. There's a good chance that these babies will have to be hand reared. The fact that your two queens nurse each others kittens is likely related to the fact that they are either related or simply act like they're related because they live in the same household - this behaviour is quite common in barn cats and feral cat colonies. Queens will often form alliances of related moms to share in kitten raising and hunting duties.

If you have any further questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me again at any time - I'm more than happy to help in any way that I can.

Kind regards,



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I am the proud guardian of 5 mixed breed cats ranging from 12 weeks to 13 years old and one purebred ragdoll. I have 20+ years experience working with mixed breed cats from a variety of different situations. I have fostered cats/kittens with special needs/behavioral issues. I have rescued/rehabilitated/re-homed a variety of stray/abused cats. I can offer advice on managing feral cat colonies, rehabilitating strays and finding them forever homes. I can help you to determine whether a cat is stray or feral, there IS a significant difference. Improperly introducing a new cat/kitten can result in aggression between newly introduced cats because cats are territorial by nature and they don't like sudden changes in their environment. To learn more about a peaceful way to introduce a new cat into a home with other cats please check out my previous answers on this subject. Proper nutrition for cats can be confusing, I recommend checking out which was created by a veterinarian (Dr. Lisa Pierson) who takes a common sense approach to explaining feline nutrition. Cat behavior and instincts are different from those of humans, I can help you understand your cat's needs so that you can meet them adequately and have a balanced, psychologically and physically sound kitty. Cats vary in personality, energy level and intelligence, different approaches may be required to achieve results in terms of training and interaction with your feline companion. An intelligent, high energy cat must be kept busy or they will make their own fun. I am NOT a licensed veterinarian and I can't offer medical advice. If your cat is ill/injured my advice is always the same: get prompt medical treatment provided by a veterinarian. If finances are an issue I will try to find resources in your area that can help with medical costs or make other choices to ensure the welfare of your cat.


I have fostered feral and stray cats, rehabilitated and homed cats that many people recommended euthanasia for. I am willing to make an effort to do the research and ask questions because I care enough to find solutions to behavioral problems rather than giving up. I have an interest in the use of alternative therapies to help provide the best possible care for all cats and I can say in all honesty that I've seen some incredible things happen for some incredible cats and their human caregivers when the right alternative therapeutic modality is used by a qualified veterinarian with expertise and experience in the field.

I've earned my diploma as a veterinary assistant with honors.

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