Achievement unlocked: teaching kittens to poop

Whatever goes in has to come out.

When you take in kittens, you have to teach them not only how to feed from the bottle or how to eat soft food, but also how to poop and pee! Normally they would learn this from their mommy cat, who would lick their butts and show them how it’s done. In the absence of a mommy cat, we had to teach them. There were plenty of jokes about Oneal licking their butts, oh yes.

The cat blogs recommended gently rubbing damp tissue or a damp towel against the kittens’ butts. Do this a few times, and the kittens will learn to poop and pee. Otherwise, it will take them longer to learn on their own, and they might suffer from complications of diarrhea or constipation, depending on how much they’re being fed.

A few weeks ago, after they had been feeding from the bottle for a few days, we decided to give that a try. We had some tissue and a dipper of warm water on hand. One by one, we took the kittens from the cage, and Oneal wiped their butts gently. We could see that they needed to pee and poop; the areas around their butts were a bit swollen. I think our timing was just right. After a few passes with the tissue, each kitten pooped a little, and peed a lot! Success! The swelling around their butts went down too.

This is definitely a milestone in our cat parenting lives, haha. As I said in an earlier post, we’ve never had to take care of kittens like this before; there was always a mommy cat present. This is the first time we’ve had to bottle-feed and toilet-train a litter!

For the first few days, they pooped and peed inconsistenly. Their poop was mostly liquid, I guess because their diet was entirely liquid too. Eventually their poop got a bit more solid.

Now that we’re mixing soft kitten food into their diet, they’re pooping solids regularly, and peeing quite a lot! Oh Lord, if we’re this happy about kitten excrement, I imagine we’ll be much more excited about our own babies and their poop and pee!


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