A kitten weight chart or growth chart is an important tool to help gauge proper kitten development. With or without their mother cat, a kitten should grow steadily, at certain rates, and a variety of changes should occur within a certain time frame. The biggest indicator that a kitten is developing properly starts with weight gain, according to a kitten weight chart.
In the first two or three days after the birth, kittens often lose some weight. However, the weight of kittens should continuously increase afterwards. Up to the age of 12 weeks, they put on an average of 7 to 10 grams per week. When their milk teeth emerge, they often have less appetite and gain weight somewhat slower. Development is the same for males and females up to around eight weeks of age. The difference between the sexes becomes evident afterwards: small males gain weight quicker than small females.
This is a complete guide to caring for your 8 week old kitten. You’ll find out how to look after a new kitten, what 8 week old kittens need, and how to settle your new kitten in to his new life with your family. We’ll be looking at kittens’ weight. How much to feed a kitten at 8 weeks old, and the best food for them. We’ll look at potty training, playtime, and when and where your 8 week old kitten should sleep.
Eight weeks is a milestone age for kittens. They should weigh about two pounds, which means they’re ready to be spayed and neutered! They’re also fully weaned (you’re done with bottle feeding) and look more like adult cats. It’s a good time to start looking for their adoptive homes.
At this age, kittens explore confidently away from their mother and can jump. They are becoming more skilled and adventurous and will sleep and eat at regular intervals like adult cats. Kittens’ growth rate will start to slow at this point. They will continue to develop muscle tone and strength but won’t be doubling their weight in a matter of days or weeks anymore.
Features Of Eight Weeks Old Kitten
- At eight weeks old, most kittens will be eating independently.
- Kittens of this age will have their permanent adult eye color.
- Kittens who are 8 weeks and 2 pounds are able to be spayed/neutered and adopted into loving forever homes.
- Average eight week old kitten weight: 850-950 grams
- Eight week old kitten care schedule: Kittens should receive ample wet food. Provide access to water and food at all times.
What Does My Kitten Growth Chart Mean?
Weight can be the number one indicator of problems in many cats, but where kittens are concerned, this is especially true. Kittens growvery rapidly, because in the wild, they would be expected to be weaned and fending for themselves by the time they are 12-16 weeks old. A kitten that is not growing is usually sick or may not be getting enough nutrition.
If kittens are still with their mom, it’s possible that there’s a health problem with mom as well. If you’re feeding orphaned kittens, you may not be doing so often enough and/or there could be an issue with your formula, for instance. In any case, if a kitten is not gaining 1.75 to 3.5 ounces every week, he or she should be examined by your veterinarian right away.
Why 8 weeks?
An 8 week old kitten is old enough to leave his Mum and join his future home. So for most of us this is the youngest age of kitten that we will ever find ourselves caring for.
Be wary of breeders that offer to let you take a kitten home at 6 or 7 weeks old. Kittens under 8 weeks old are not ready to leave their Mums and litter brothers and sisters. If you have brought home a kitten younger than 8 weeks old for any reason, have a chat with your vet. They will be able to support you in giving your baby kitty the best possible care.
How Much Does A Newborn Kitten Weigh?
A newborn kitten weighs around 100g – the same as a bar of chocolate. With a body length of around 4 inches, it comfortably fits in the hand of an adult human.
Birth weight depends, amongst other things, on the breed of the parents and the size of the litter. Kittens from a large litter are generally smaller and lighter than kittens from a small litter. A Norwegian Forest cat already weighs more than a Siamese, for instance.
The mother’s living conditions during her pregnancy play a role. Stress, illness and poor nutrition can have a negative influence on kittens when they are born. On the other hand, a well-balanced and well-fed cat mother will probably give birth to heavier offspring
8 week old kitten size
Your new kitten is going to be very small indeed at 8 weeks old. This makes him vulnerable. Especially for the first few days. It is one of the reasons that some pedigree cat breeders prefer to keep kittens until 12 weeks before letting them go to their new homes.
I know that I worried about stepping on Billy for those first couple of weeks and you probably will too. New kittens are easy to step on or trip over. Kittens just love winding themselves in and out of people’s legs, and have a very poor ability to judge risk, so you are going to need to be especially careful for a while. Walk slowly when your kitten is in the room, and be extra vigilant on the stairs.
Exactly how big your kitten is at 8 weeks will depend on what type of cat he is going to be. Large breed cats are unsurprisingly larger as kittens, Maine Coon kittens for example are a lot bigger at 8 weeks than smaller breeds.
How Much To Feed A Kitten At 8 Weeks
Eight week old kittens need only tiny portions of food. Exactly how much depends on the type of food you have chosen for your cat. Wet food comes in cans or pouches and many 8 week old kittens will need only about four ounces a day.
Be guided by the manufacturers recommendations, and remember to give a little more if your kitten is a large breed. And remember that hunger is not a great indicator of need. Some kittens are very greedy. Your kitten will also need more if he becomes underweight or fails to grow at a healthy rate. This daily food ration needs to be divided into several small meals.
How Often To Feed Kittens 8 Weeks Old
Tiny cats have tiny stomachs. If you give your kitten too much to eat he will get fat, and if you give him all his daily food allowance in one or two meals, he’ll get diarrhea.
This means that kittens have to be fed little and often. An eight week old kitten needs four meals a day. Breakfast, lunch, tea and supper. Here is an example – this is the routine my kitten Billy was on for the first couple of weeks
- 7:30 am 1/4 of a 3.5 oz (100g) can of Lucy’s kitchen – just under an ounce (25g)
- 11 am Two heaped teaspoons of Thrive Kitten food – this is slightly less than half a 2.5oz (75g) can so about 1 ounce (30g)
- 2:30 pm 1/4 of a can of Lucy’s kitchen
- 7 pm Two heaped teaspoons of Thrive Kitten food
You’ll feel more confident when you have read our complete guide to feeding your kitten – but try not to worry, it isn’t hard to get this right.