Wednesday, May 18, 2011
Day 3: Getting into the routine
We are all getting into a routine. The kittens need to be fed every 2 to 3 hours. I am feeding them every 2 hours during the dayand every 3 hours at night.
I start by warming their formula by placing the kitten bottle in a coffe cup of HOT water. After the formula is warm, I bring the box of kittens to my chair. I feed the two gray bob-tail ones first so I don't accidently feed one twice and one not at all. Then I feed the gray one with a tail, then the black one. (the black one does not like the arrangement and frequently crawls out of the box when the others are being fed)
Since they are so small the vet gave me some little droppers to feed them with saying that the bottle nursers make it too easy to over feed or aspirate them. It's very easy to aspirate a small kitten and drown them or cause them to get pnuemonia.
The best thing about these droppers is that the bul is about the same size as the kittens stomachs.So one dropper full is all they need per feeding.
After I feed a kitten, I dip a coton ball into the cup of warm water, check that it isn't too hot, and rub their bottoms. This stimulates them to eliminate. Sometimes they barely go, other times they go so much I get soaked lol.
When a kitten has been fed and wiped it goes back into the box and the next one is taken out and gets his turn. At this time I am calling them all him since I cannot tell who is male or female. At this time, no one has a name. Amber and Dawn need to name their kittens, and I am waiting until I know if ours are male or female. So for now we have "Trouble" (Amber's kitten); "The Black one" (Dawn's Kitten); "The one with the tail" and "The timid gray one" (both ours)
After everyone has been fed and cleaned up, they are all taken back to the bedroom where I have a bigger box for them with an electric blanket to help them keep their body temerature. They cannot keep their own body temp, and they MUST be kept warm. If they get cold they cannot digest their food, and or keep their internal organs warm and they will die.
When the babies are settled, I clean up. From start o finnish, a feding takes between 20 and 30 minutes, depending on how long it takes them to latch on and eat, and how many times I have to stop and put one (usually the black one) back in the box.
The kittens are doing well so far. They are strong and active and are eating and eliminating well. Things can go downhill fast with such small kittens and we will not be out of the woods for a few weeks, but we are hoping for the best.
The kittens are getting used to eating out of the dropper and Dewayne and I are getting used to feeding them every two hours. I will be glad when they are old enough to go all night without a feeding lol.