Discover our Kitten Growth Program
Kittenhood is an amazing period during which your tiny kitten will grow, learn, and evolve. While this exciting time is filled with discoveries, it’s also the most delicate stage of your kitten’s life.
Within a year, their body will grow and mature at an incredible pace so they can progress from complete dependence on their mother to a curious, playful and confident young cat. And with the right support we can help provide the perfect foundations for a healthy life.
From birth to 3 weeks
During this intense but brief stage, your kitten sleeps… a lot! This is a period of adaptation during which they start to interact with their new world; after two weeks they’ll start to practice clumsy movement, slowly learning how to coordinate their steps as they explore. At the same time, the kitten is receiving protective immunity from their mother as they nurse. This maternal immunity protects the kitten for the first few weeks of life while their own immune system develops. If additional nutritional support is needed during this time, ROYAL CANIN® Babycat milk can help, formulated to be as close as possible to the queen’s milk with highly digestible proteins and carefully selected nutrients for their immature and delicate digestive system.
From 3 weeks to 4 months
As they become more independent, kittens will be learning and exploring as they begin to develop social skills! With all these changes, milk alone no longer provides enough energy and nutrients so your kitten will need to transition slowly to solid food. ROYAL CANIN® Mother & Babycat kibble and ROYAL CANIN® Mother & Babycat mousse are designed to be your kitten’s first solid food, are energy-dense and highly digestible to help support this transition, and have adapted textures that make these foods easy for young kittens to eat.
From the eighth week, your kitten will start running and climbing. It’s a vital period to build their most impressive skill —balance! For this, they need food that supports their vision, as well as cognitive and muscle development. ROYAL CANIN® Mother & Babycat contains a balance of nutrients for the growth and development of bones and muscle and is rich in omega-3 fatty acids including DHA to help support your kitten’s sensory development.
Remember, even if your kitten no longer fits in the palm of your hand, they’re still a kitten and their digestive system is still progressively maturing. ROYAL CANIN® Mother & Babycat is formulated be highly digestible and includes prebiotics to help support your kitten’s developing digestive system and microbiome.
From 4 months to 12 months
During this stage, your kitten’s growth will slow down as they mature into a well-proportioned cat. Your kitten is now ready to transition to a new diet, one that can support the visible changes, like development of their body structure, and the invisible changes, like maturation of their immune system. ROYAL CANIN® Kitten is rich in antioxidants, which includes vitamins C and E, lutein, a nutrient that gives marigold flowers their yellow colour, and the amino acid taurine, that help support the development of their immune system.
Once they have been spayed or neutered, your kitten’s energy needs will decline and they can benefit from a formula that is less calorically dense but still fulfilling, to satisfy their appetite while helping to maintain a healthy weight, like ROYAL CANIN® Kitten Spayed/Neutered. Feeding your kitten to maintain a healthy weight throughout their growth will set them up to be healthy adults.
Depending on the breed, your kitten will reach adulthood between 12 to 15 months of age. Your veterinarian can advise you on exactly when to transition your kitten to an adult diet.
Mixed feeding: an essential part of your kitten’s diet
As your kitten grows, their sense of smell, taste, and mouthfeel are also developing. While we don’t often think of mouthfeel, or the sensory experience of food texture, as an important consideration for pets, kittens will develop preferences based on what they eat in these first months that can last a lifetime. Offering your kitten both dry and wet foods can help to promote their acceptance of different diets in the future.