How to Tell Your Kitten’s Age

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There is no sure way to tell the exact age of a kitten, but you can estimate by examining them physically and watching them closely. Are their eyes open? Are they still blue? (Some cats’ eyes never change, so this isn’t always a guarantee.) Are their teeth in? If so, how many and how are they shaped? As far as their actions, do they walk with confidence or are they a little shaky on their legs? Are they socializing with their littermates? I’ve done a little research on this subject and here’s what I’ve found. 

When I bring a kitten to the vet for the first time, one of the first things I ask is how old is it. There are things that you can look for to estimate the kitten’s age.

At birth, the kitten’s ears and ears are closed. The eyes open during the second week, and the ears open when he is about three weeks old, causing the kitten to perk up and take notice of the world around him. It’s at this time that his eyes will start to change color to their permanent color. 

The teeth of a cat often tell his age. Like a human, kittens are born with no teeth. Also like humans, they have two sets, baby and permanent. There are two differences between the first and the second sets of teeth. The first set, or baby teeth, are small and pointed, while the second set is larger and has flat edges. The baby teeth start to come in when the kitten is about three weeks old. About eleven weeks later, at fourteen weeks, the middle incisors come in. Then at about fifteen weeks the second incisors and at sixteen weeks the third incisors come in. 

Example by ASACA: if the kitten has both his first permanent incisors but not her second or third incisors, our best guess would be that he is 14 weeks old

At birth, the kitten makes sounds that are no more than soft mews, telling mom that he is hungry. When he is three weeks, he begins to purr.

Also at three weeks, he will venture out on shaky legs, and about four weeks, he will be more confident in his wanderings. It’s then that you need to kitten proof your home. We will discuss this in a future post.

He will start to socialize with his litter mates at about four or five weeks. It’s then that you want him to get used to socializing with you very slowly. The best way to do this is with cuddles.

By the time he is a year old, he is no longer a kitten.

Being a guardian to a kitten is work, but it’s worth the endless rewards you’ll receive for years to come.

 

The Spruce Pets

Hills

ASACA

2020 Kitten Super Bowl VII

2020 Kitten Bowl

 

When January 1st of every year comes around, I start to count the days until the Kitten Bowl. It’s always an exciting event, full of giggles, guffaws and a lot of “awws”. Since 2014, I have been entertain by these furballs tustling around a miniture football field. In this writer’s opinion it is one of the cutest Super Bowls around. It ‘s also the biggest adoption drive of the year…and it’s televised, as well! The game is presented in association with The North Shore Animal League America the nation’s largest no-kill shelter, and The Lasthope Animal Rescue and Rehabilitation

This year, over one hundred kittens were featured. The day before the game, I went on my computer to find if I could adopt one of the fuzzy kittens and I received a message that said “unfortunately, I was too late to adopt”. I think that is fortunate, don’t you?

For those of you that have not watched a Kitten Super Bowl, I will explain how the champions are determined. There are a total of three games. Four teams split up to play the first two games. The winners of those games go on to the third game. The winner of the final game will be the Kitten Super Bowl  champions.

2020 Kitten Supar Bowl 2

In the first game this year, the North Shore Bengals challenged the champs from last year, the Little Longtails. The last play of that game was made when Maverick of the Little Longtails recovered a fumbled and “ran” it in for a touchdown, making the final score the Little Longtails – 40 and the North Shore Bengals – 34.

In the second game the Last Hope Lyons took on the Courageous Cougars. The new expansion team, the Courageous Cougars squeaked by the Last Hope Lyons with a final score of 14 – 13.

Which brought the Little Longtails and the Courageous Cougars to game three and fight for the championship. In the last few seconds of the game, the Cougars made a sneak attack, surprising the Lyons and taking it in for a touchdown. The final score was Courageous Cougars – 57 and the Little Longtails – 51.

2020 Kitten Super Bowl 1

So, after a morning of cuteness, the Courageous Cougars were named the champs of Super Bowl VII, leaving this writer yearning to add to her cat family.

If you can provide a loving furever home, please contact your nearest shelter.

Click here to meet the kittens.

Click here for the players profiles.

Our thanks also goes out to:

Niagra Frontier Publications

Why Not a Kitten for a Present

I wrote this article a few years ago,  but I feel so strongly about the subject that I post it every holiday season.

It’s that time of year again. The time for decorations, Christmas trees, Santa Claus and presents. It’s the time for parents to make their child’s’ fantasies come true. It is so tempting for ‘Santa’ to give their darling a little kitten. They are so cute and cuddly and, it is thought that, as the child grows, so can the kitten.

However, we must remember that a kitten is not a toy. They are living beings, with needs that can only be met by a true knowledge of what it takes to be a good guardian. The excitement of waking up Christmas morning to a brand new furry kitten, will soon wear off when the child is charged with caring for Fifi. Chances are, it will take no time at all before he will grow tired of feeding her and cleaning the litter box. Then it falls to the parent to take care of the needs.

A cat (as with any pet) is a full-time responsibility that can last for 20 years or more. In that time, Johnny or Janey will probably go their separate ways, leaving the cat behind. That’s all well and good for the humans, but for the cats, who have grown to depend on their people for love and attention, it can be traumatic and certainly is unfair.

In my opinion, one of the main reasons not to get a kitten as a present is that, in order to meet the demand, some pet stores, etc. receive their supply from disreputable breeders and kitten mills.

A kitten mill is a place where cats are bred in tight quarters with no medical attention, until they are no longer able to breed. When that day comes, they either are tragically killed or  sold, spreading diseases. When they are kept alive to be given away, the kitten has a higher chance of being unhealthy, costing more money and possible heartache in the long run.

So, the next time you take your child into the pet store to gaze at the cute little furry things in the window, remember, they are not toys , so look, but don’t give in to the temptation of taking one home.

Why Not a Kitten for Christmas? (A Bonus Post For Christmas)

I wrote this article last year,  but I feel so strongly about the subject that I decided to post it again.

It’s that time of year again. The time for decorations, Christmas trees, Santa Claus and presents. It’s the time for parents to make their child’s’ fantasies come true. It is so tempting for ‘Santa’ to give their darling a little kitten. They are so cute and cuddly and, it is thought that, as the child grows, so can the kitten.

However, we must remember that a kitten is not a toy. They are living beings, with needs that can only be met by a true knowledge of what it takes to be a good guardian. The excitement of waking up Christmas morning to a brand new furry kitten, will soon wear off when the child is charged with caring for Fifi. Chances are, it will take no time at all before he will grow tired of feeding her and cleaning the litter box. Then it falls to the parent to take care of the needs.

A cat (as with any pet) is a full-time responsibility that can last for 20 years or more. In that time, Johnny or Janey will probably go their separate ways, leaving the cat behind. That’s all well and good for the humans, but for the cats, who have grown to depend on their people for love and attention, it can be traumatic and certainly is unfair.

In my opinion, one of the main reasons not to get a kitten as a present is that, in order to meet the demand, some pet stores, etc. receive their supply from disreputable breeders and kitten mills.

A kitten mill is a place where cats are bred in tight quarters with no medical attention, until they are no longer able to breed. When that day comes, they either are tragically killed or  sold, spreading diseases. When they are kept alive to be given away, the kitten has a higher chance of being unhealthy, costing more money and possible heartache in the long run.

So, the next time you take your child into the pet store to gaze at the cute little furry things in the window, remember, they are not toys , so look, but don’t give in to the temptation of taking one home.