Fostering Newborn Kittens

Thank you for choosing to become a vital part of our mission by fostering newborn kittens. Your commitment provides these vulnerable animals with a chance for a healthy and happy life. Caring for newborn kittens is both rewarding and challenging, requiring dedication, patience, and a considerable investment of time and resources.

Feeding Newborn Kittens

Newborn kittens require feeding every 2-3 hours around the clock for the first two weeks of life. As they grow, the frequency of feedings can decrease, but it is crucial in the early days to adhere to this rigorous schedule to ensure proper growth and health. Kittens should be fed a high-quality commercial kitten formula, as cow’s milk and other milk substitutes do not provide the necessary nutrients and can cause harm.

It is essential to maintain a warm feeding environment, as kittens are unable to regulate their body temperature efficiently. After feeding, kittens need gentle stimulation of their abdomen and anal area with a warm, damp cloth to encourage urination and defecation, mimicking the mother cat’s cleaning behavior.

Understanding Fading Kitten Syndrome

Fading Kitten Syndrome refers to the sudden decline in health of one or more neonatal kittens, which can occur within the first few weeks of life. Symptoms include lethargy, low body temperature, little or no weight gain, and decreased interest in feeding. This condition can be caused by various factors, including birth defects, environmental stress, or inadequate maternal care.

Immediate intervention is crucial and includes providing adequate warmth, feeding, and, if necessary, veterinary care. Monitoring the kittens for any signs of distress and maintaining a detailed health log can help in early detection and treatment. For more information, visit

Resource Requirements

Fostering newborn kittens requires various resources:

  1. Supplies: Feeding bottles, kitten formula, heating pads, blankets, and a safe, enclosed space free of drafts.
  2. Time: Commitment to feeding schedules, cleaning, and socialization.
  3. Veterinary Care: Regular check-ups, vaccinations, and emergency care if symptoms of illness arise.
  4. Emotional Resilience: Understanding that despite best efforts, the mortality rate for newborn kittens can be high, especially for those without maternal care. The mortality rate can range from 15% to 40%, depending on various factors such as initial health status and care quality.

While fostering newborn kittens is an intense commitment that can extend over several weeks, it is also an immensely fulfilling experience. By providing these kittens with the care they need at the most vulnerable point in their lives, you are directly contributing to their chances of growing into healthy, adoptable cats. The Montgomery Humane Society provides continuous support to our foster parents through resources, guidance, and veterinary care to ensure that you are not alone in this journey.

Together, we can give these newborn kittens the start in life they deserve.

Please feel free to reach out to our team anytime at if you need assistance or have any questions. Your role as a foster parent is crucial, and we are here to support you every step of the way. Thank you for your dedication and love for these animals.

Back to Top