Finding A (Stray) Kitten: What To Do?

You find a kitten on the streets. Alone, meowing, without mom around. I know that the urge to take this little ball of fur with you is big. But before you do that, it’s important to know about this…


Copyright by Sausyn.

Don’t Take Kittens Home Right Away

Don’t kittens you have found suddenly home with you. It’s important to find out if the mother isn’t around. Maybe she’s looking for food and might be gone for a while. This means that if the kittens are calm and feel warm, the mother is probably around, keeping an eye out. Kittens need their mom! Do the kittens feel cold, wet, are they restless and do they have puss in their eyes? Contact an organisation/shelter who is working and specialized with stray/feral cats.

Try to guess how old the kittens are, and if there is a possibility that you can weight them, so you can compare them with the pictures in this post: How To Determine A Kittens Age.

Those pictures and tips are used to help, but every situation can be different. Kittens from a domestic, not stay mother cat need to stay with herĀ  as long as possible. But about 8 to 12 weeks. If it’s about a tame, but stray cat, it’s best to bring the mother and kittens to a shelter together.


Use these tips in combination with the pictures you can find in the link above.

New Born Kittens
New born kittens need to be kept warm right away, with either a warmth-pillow/pitcher or using a heat lamp.
Note: Is mom moving the kittens? You may need Colostrum.

1 Week Old Kittens
Those kittens also need to be kept warm with a heat lamp, warmth-pillow/pitchers as well. They need replacement powdermilk every two hours. The cats should weight around 150 grams.
Note: Their mother might be gone looking for food

10 Days Old
Need to be kept warm right away and need replacement powdermilk every two hours.
Note: Give the mother cat and the kittens the rest they need.

2 weeks Old
The eyes are open, but their ears aren’t completely up yet. The kittens are crawling and peeping. They also need to be kept warm right away. They also need their first start in socialization (friendly contact).
Note: Kittens sleep a lot. For stray cats, their mother might be looking for food.

3 Weeks Old
Ears are up completely now. They need about 300/350 grams of replacement powdermilk every three hours. And they need to be kept warm.
Note: Mother cat will leave their kittens alone more often so she can go looking for food because she needs more nutrients.

4 Weeks Old
The kittens will take their first steps from the nest and eat their first bites of food (weaning starts).
Note: Kittens of a feral cat still need mother milk. Mother cat also bring dead prey to the nest. Keep an eye out on the place where the kittens are walking without disturbing the mother so she won’t leave her kittens.

Greek Cat Family

Copyright by ZeroOne.

5 Weeks Old
The kittens still have blue eyes and they should weight around 500-600 gram. Transition slowly from mothermilk to food. The kittens are walking around more and are in contact with their surroundings. Make sure it’s safe. Friendly contact is very important during their socialization.
Note: Estimate the situation with an organization.
6-7 Weeks Old
The eyes are in their true color now. The kittens eat by their own.
Note: Kittens from stray/feral cats; this is an important time for human contact. Estimate the situation with an organization.

Have you ever find a stray kitten?


Related Articles
Cats & Co | How To Determine A Kittens Age
Cats & Co | Feral Kittens

15 Responses to “Finding A (Stray) Kitten: What To Do?”

  1. Gobi Obi

    the kitten I’ve adopted was found in the streets at around 10 weeks old, his leg was broken, he was handed to an animal charity the RSPCA and they asked would I foster him until they found hima forever home and they would pay the costs of his treatment for the bad leg, well he is coming up 6 months now and doing well, although he has only got two toes on his back leg, I adopted him.

  2. Angelique

    Hi! Id really appreciate some advice if possible. There was a kitten outside my house meowing all night for its mother, in the morning it continued, no mother. My partner and i attempted to give it some food but it hid away. It has brown eyes and can do basic climbing. Where we live there are some holes filled with mud and underground water, we were quite worried about her falling in being so young so we went to catch her. Some scratches later we placed her in a box with blankets, water and some cat food. She had none of it and tried to escape so we left her in the box for warmth, on our back verander where there is shelter and close to, facing her original location. She is continuing to meow, with no sign of mother.
    I am unsure what to do. Do mother cats leave for many days without returning and should we put her back in the same place? We live on a small greek island so there is no animal shelter we can take her to. She is too feral to hand feed a cat milk substitute and will not let us pat her. She does have green/brown eyes so from this post im thinking maybe her mother has now left her and shes still trying to cope for herself?
    What would you suggest we do?
    Your help is greatly appreciated! Thank you!


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