Medical care

Veterinarian

 
 

A good contact with a veterinarian is of the utmost importance in case things aren't going as they should go. Therefore it is important to find a veterinarian who enjoys giving medical care to very young animals. Most veterinarians have no experience at all with orphaned animals. Some veterinarians think it is better to give no medication at all because of the vulnerable bowel flora of the youngsters. There is much to say for carefulness, however sometimes one can't do without a proper medication. When a kitten is to die because of dehydration caused by diarrhea or sneezing disease a healthy bowel flora is of no use anymore to him. A good veterinarian will absolutely take the age of the kitten in account, and will subscribe medication accordingly to that. Quote; "Sometimes it is necessary to kick nature in the ass."

Contact your veterinarian

 
 

In some cases a consult with a veterinarian is inevitable. A phone call can determine if the case is an urgent one. You could already take the temperature of the kitten to help the veterinarian. The normal temperature is between 38° and 39°C. It is advisable to keep a precise daily record of the amount of daily food, the weight and how the stool looks. These kind of records can come in handy, suppose you enjoyed nursing a litter of orphans, and you're planning to do this again.

Urgency

 
 

Visible wounds, a dehydrated or comatose kitten, constant (more then two days in a row) or bloody diarrhea, sneezing disease, a kitten that is literally eaten by fleas, which is weak and has pale mucous membranes

     

Consultation with the veterinarian in case of:

Hypothermia

 
 

When a kitten feels cold, slowly warm it up. Don't put it direct on a hotwaterbag, or expose it to a heating lamp. Rub the little one with warm cloths, then try to let it drink something.

Dehydration

 
 

A kitten that is dehydrating. This can be checked by gently pulling the skin in the neck between a thumb and index finger. Normally, when released, the skin will fold back instantly. When the kitten is dehydrating, the skin will take a longer time to fold back.

Anorexia

 
 

When a kitten won't eat or drink for more then one day in a row. Take action to keep the fluid balance on the right level. Dehydration happens very fast.

Milk emitting from the nose

 
  When the milk is emitting from the nose.This can be caused by: The hole in the nipple is to large, the kitten is to greedy while eating or by a split palate.

Vomiting

 
 

Vomiting can be caused due to various reasons. If there are any worms present in the vomit, the cause is clear. If this is not the case, and the vomiting continues for more then one day, it can cause dehydration. It is necessary to consult a veterinarian and search for the cause.

Moaning

 
 

When a kitten moans constantly, obviously something is wrong. Normally a kitten will make some noise when it is hungry or when something is wrong. When the problem has been taken care of, the moaning will stop. A sick kitten will keep on moaning.

Reduced conscience

 
  When a kitten seems to be more or less unconscious. This doesn't mean there is a serious problem. Bowel cramps can be the cause. Sometimes this effect can be seen when kittens are extremely greedy eaters or when one forgets to stimulate regularly.

Dirty eyes

 
 

The eyes must be clean and clear when open. In case both eyes not open yet at the age of two weeks, the veterinarian can help to open them. Do not do this yourself!

Dirty nose

 
 

The nose must be clean. A dirty or dripping nose together with dirty eyes is almost always caused by sneezing disease. Usually, this is easily cured, if action is immediately taken.

Dirty tail area

 
  The tail area beneath the tail must be clean. Diarrhea can be caused by a worm infection The kitten will be skinny and has a fat belly. Diarrhea can also be caused by wrong or to much nutrition, or when one has switched two kind of nutrition to fast.

Constipation

 
 

When a kitten doesn't produce stool for more then three days, and fat milk didn't help, consult a veterinarian.

Fleas

 
 

Normally the skin is clean, without visible fleas or flea poop. When flea poop is made wet, it will have the appearance of blood, because it is dried blood. Fleas suck themselves full with the blood of the kitten. A flea-infestation can cause anemia and of course a worm infestation.

Unusual

 
 

The normal state of fur is soft, woolly, without bald spots. A sticky fur with visible little white powdery spots might be caused by lice infection. The treatment is not difficult, but can be somewhat time-consuming. Bald spot might be caused by a fungus. The treatment of a fungus infection is more complex. Both infections are contagious.

Irritated skin

 
 

An irritated or broken skin is often the result when kittens are sucking on each other. Sometimes this is noted to late, then a treatment is necessary to make the skin healthy again.

Mites

 
 

Inside the ears, it must be clean. A dark brown or black granulous substance inside the ears might be caused by ear mites. A neglected ear mites infection can fill the whole ear with this substance. Ear mites are contagious to another animals.

Delay in growth

 
 

Usually one of the kittens will be smaller then the rest. Often this will be the most furious one. Such a kitten will grow relatively as good as the rest. However, when a kittens shows a striking delay in growth, the reason for this must be found.