Author Topic: would you adopt a 5 week old kitten?  (Read 1762 times)

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Julian

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Re: would you adopt a 5 week old kitten?
« Reply #15 on: March 02, 2013, 05:40:20 PM »
Morty was only 5 weeks old when I took him home - the people we got him from got the dates wrong, I backtracked and worked out how young he really was.

Fortunately he was eating solids and seemed weaned, so feeding him wasn't a problem.

His issue was a bit of urinary incontinence and failure to groom.  He'd leave a little wet patch wherever he sat, poor little guy.  Fortunately that didn't last too long, just a couple of weeks.  Learning to use the litter tray took a couple of goes, but he got it fairly quickly.  He also had a bazillion fleas, but a couple of rosemary water baths took care of them.

He never really 'got' the grooming thing till he was about 2 years old, despite having an older cat around for his first 6 months or so, and his slightly older 'brother' who had no problems grooming.  It was after the brother died and we adopted Milly, an adult stray, who basically stalked him around for the first few weeks she was home, then held him down and bathed him like a baby.  He got it very quickly after that!   ;D

Morty is now a happy, healthy affectionate 13 year old.

Would I do it again?  Not by choice, but if it was by necessity, yes, for sure.  It surely isn't any worse than bring up 4 puppies from newborn, even with their very attentive Mummy around! 

MorgnsGrl

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Re: would you adopt a 5 week old kitten?
« Reply #16 on: March 02, 2013, 05:50:46 PM »
On Craigslist, there is a litter of rescued kittens that need new homes. The guy says he found them abandoned in a Dumpster. He's been bottle-feeding them. They're on solids, and he has to leave town or something, and he needs to find them homes.

So the question is NOT "would you send a 5-week-old kitten out to be adopted." That's not mine to answer; it's his, and his answer is "yes, unfortunately I have to."

My question is: What are the downsides to adopting a very young kitten?

A very young kitten who has been separated from its mother before natural weaning (at least 8 weeks, but ideally more like 12) can have strange personality stuff because it didn't have a chance to be socialized by an adult cat. In my experience, a small percentage of these non-feline-mom-raised cats grow up to be weird, quirky adult cats, but the vast majority of them are well within the range of "normal" as adults. We have two cats who were weaned prematurely (at about 4 weeks of age) and they're both normal adults now.

The immediate downsides are that there may be 2-4 weeks when these young kittens need more careful attention than an older kitten would -- I'd probably weigh a young kitten like this every other day or so to make sure it was gaining appropriately, and I'd make sure I had a vet lined up in case anything seemed to be going wrong. But it sounds like these kittens are already eating solid food, which is a huge plus.

Erich L-ster

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Re: would you adopt a 5 week old kitten?
« Reply #17 on: March 02, 2013, 05:54:45 PM »
If they were found in a dumpster they may have been thrown in there by some @#$% who didn't want them. If the mom gave birth in there they would probably have been killed because the truck just lifts up a dumpster mechanically, nobody gets out to look inside first.

It sounds like the guy has done a good deed and is trying to do the right thing. The best thing for the kitten would be to come home with you. If you can deal with the special needs of having such a young kitten it may get you a closer bond with a sweet pet. You'll be the only mom it's known.

nuit93

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Re: would you adopt a 5 week old kitten?
« Reply #18 on: March 02, 2013, 06:43:35 PM »
Morty was only 5 weeks old when I took him home - the people we got him from got the dates wrong, I backtracked and worked out how young he really was.

Fortunately he was eating solids and seemed weaned, so feeding him wasn't a problem.

His issue was a bit of urinary incontinence and failure to groom.  He'd leave a little wet patch wherever he sat, poor little guy.  Fortunately that didn't last too long, just a couple of weeks.  Learning to use the litter tray took a couple of goes, but he got it fairly quickly.  He also had a bazillion fleas, but a couple of rosemary water baths took care of them.

He never really 'got' the grooming thing till he was about 2 years old, despite having an older cat around for his first 6 months or so, and his slightly older 'brother' who had no problems grooming.  It was after the brother died and we adopted Milly, an adult stray, who basically stalked him around for the first few weeks she was home, then held him down and bathed him like a baby.  He got it very quickly after that!   ;D

Morty is now a happy, healthy affectionate 13 year old.

Would I do it again?  Not by choice, but if it was by necessity, yes, for sure.  It surely isn't any worse than bring up 4 puppies from newborn, even with their very attentive Mummy around!

Does rosemary water really work that well for fleas?

crella

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Re: would you adopt a 5 week old kitten?
« Reply #19 on: March 02, 2013, 08:37:15 PM »
I did once, some elementary school kids asked me to keep it 'till we talk to J's mother about it'. They didn't come back for 3 weeks, at which point I said 'I'm sorry, I'm going to raise her'.

It entailed getting up every two hours all night long for the first while. It was a lot of work, she couldn't eat food  as she had been out on the school grounds a while and had weakened. I had her in a front pack while I cleaned the house, for the first couple of weeks, I was so afraid I'd step on her (and she purrred SO loud in the carrier). We had a cat already, and once she got her nose out of joint, she was a good mom. It was heartwarming to watch her teach the little one how to catch bugs, use the litter box, hide and jump out when I went by (put the wee one behind the bedspread and wait for her to jump out after demonstrating), and all the other things a cat has to learn ;D  It might be easier if you have a cat already.

m2kbug

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Re: would you adopt a 5 week old kitten?
« Reply #20 on: March 02, 2013, 09:53:39 PM »
I have adopted out (and adopted) kittens that young before.  They were were eating regular food.  I gave the kittens to people close who were classmates, so I just let them know if there were problems with the food and water, I could take them back, but at 5 weeks of age, they are typically nibbling on regular food anyway and going to the bathroom on their own.  Soft food might be better at first.  The litter box was a little bit of challenge just because they had a hard time getting in it, but I set up some books so they could get in.  Kittens can also be a little bit lazy about going all the way to another room, but that hasn't been an overall huge problem for me.  I did keep a box in the living room for a little while before moving it to a more acceptable location.  They might make use of houseplants, so there's some training involved.  They can also be really rude when you're eating and try to crawl onto your plate...more training. 

I have bottle raised kittens and had a momma get pregnant and I just started introducing regular food really early.  Just keep the dry in an easy spot so the kittens can nibble and give canned food a couple times a day, which they loved, plus the canned food provides extra water if drinking from the bowl is a little difficult at first. 

As long as these little guys are on regular food, I think I would totally adopt. 

Julian

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Re: would you adopt a 5 week old kitten?
« Reply #21 on: March 03, 2013, 03:09:36 PM »
Morty was only 5 weeks old when I took him home - the people we got him from got the dates wrong, I backtracked and worked out how young he really was.

Fortunately he was eating solids and seemed weaned, so feeding him wasn't a problem.

His issue was a bit of urinary incontinence and failure to groom.  He'd leave a little wet patch wherever he sat, poor little guy.  Fortunately that didn't last too long, just a couple of weeks.  Learning to use the litter tray took a couple of goes, but he got it fairly quickly.  He also had a bazillion fleas, but a couple of rosemary water baths took care of them.

He never really 'got' the grooming thing till he was about 2 years old, despite having an older cat around for his first 6 months or so, and his slightly older 'brother' who had no problems grooming.  It was after the brother died and we adopted Milly, an adult stray, who basically stalked him around for the first few weeks she was home, then held him down and bathed him like a baby.  He got it very quickly after that!   ;D

Morty is now a happy, healthy affectionate 13 year old.

Would I do it again?  Not by choice, but if it was by necessity, yes, for sure.  It surely isn't any worse than bring up 4 puppies from newborn, even with their very attentive Mummy around!

Does rosemary water really work that well for fleas?

It seemed to - the adult fleas couldn't get off him quickly enough.  It didn't do anything for the eggs though,  and it was a repeated process over a couple of weeks. 

(I had a large rosemary bush, and I'd make a strong tea with the leaves, let it cool and pour it over him after a regular bath.  A couple of fleas in the bath water, and a whole lot more after the rosemary rinse.)

EMuir

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Re: would you adopt a 5 week old kitten?
« Reply #22 on: March 03, 2013, 04:36:51 PM »
The part they will miss is socializing with other cats.  The important part is learning to not play too rough.  If you could adopt two so they can teach each other, that might be best.  Also, you have to keep them clean so they learn being clean is best.  Good luck!

TootsNYC

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Re: would you adopt a 5 week old kitten?
« Reply #23 on: March 03, 2013, 04:54:02 PM »
well, we decided to pass. We found an older kitten and put in for adopting her today.

And when I called this guy back about the teensy one, he said he'd adopted her out to a family with another couple of cats. So all is good!

jpcher

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Re: would you adopt a 5 week old kitten?
« Reply #24 on: March 03, 2013, 05:04:31 PM »
well, we decided to pass. We found an older kitten and put in for adopting her today.

And when I called this guy back about the teensy one, he said he'd adopted her out to a family with another couple of cats. So all is good!

Yea!

Finding an animal to live with in your home is a difficult choice to make. I'm sure you will be happy with your choice. ;D

It's good to know that the other kittens were adopted and went to loving homes.