Full development of a kitten is possible only in good conditions, when it is not only loved and preserved, but also properly fed, treated if necessary. Some may ask: where is the kitten's age? It's simple. At each stage of its development, it should receive a different diet and this is at a minimum. Age is also very important when prescribing a pet treatment. Yes, and to understand his character and behavior, knowing the psycho-emotional characteristics of each stage of maturation, is much easier. Establishing a strong friendship with a kitten directly depends on understanding. It turns out that there are many reasons for determining the age of a pet and all of them are important for its normal life.
Signs that determine the age of a kitten at home
At first it may seem that the task is not simple. In fact, determining the amount of time lived by animals is not so difficult and each owner may well do it themselves.
To find out the age of the kitten at home can be on such parameters:
- Weight and size
- Eye color and ears,
- Teeth, their number and condition,
That is, a careful examination of the kitten will provide sufficient information, after analyzing which, it is easy to determine how much he is an adult and established cat.
Basic methods by which the cat's age is recognized
There are several ways to determine the age of a kitten at home, without consulting a veterinarian for advice. Each of them is simple and is based on the analysis of several features listed above. There are three main methods, based on:
- external examination,
- studying and assessing behavior
- determining the puberty of a kitten.
Method of external examination
The easiest is the method of external examination of a kitten. Thus, determining age will be approximately, because the height, weight and size of a cat depends on many factors and sometimes gives false information about how many months an individual has. And the older the kitten, the more difficult it is not to make a mistake, determining its age in this way. Nevertheless, it is worth starting with it.
- The first thing is to examine the belly kitten. If the umbilical cord is found there, it means that it is a newborn who is from one to three days old. It is during this time that the umbilical cord heals, gradually dries, and then disappears.
- About the recent appearance of the light and say closed eyes. The first half of the month, the kittens' eyes are closed. Of course, there are cases when they open up after 7 days, but not earlier. Therefore, if they are tightly closed, then almost certainly this is the first week of the baby's life. But by the end of the second his eyes will open completely and the kitten will be able to see the world around it. Also, the color of the eyes also indicates such a young age. In all kittens, he first blue, varying degrees of brightness. But already in a month, one and a half, it will change.
- Carefully examine the ears of the animal.. From birth to 6-8 days of life, they have a kitten quite tightly pressed to the head. And all because the ear canals are still closed and open gradually, even a little longer than the eyes of the crumbs. In this case, the ears themselves are not straightened immediately after the opening of the channels, but after a few weeks. Fully straightened ears has a kitten, which is already more than three weeks.
- And now about how to determine the age of a kitten also by teethThat is also part of the pet's visual inspection. From birth to crescent, they are simply absent. But by the end of the second week of life, the first teeth begin to erupt. You can feel them by carefully examining the pet's gums. On the third, fourth week, the kitten begins to acquire its first fangs.
By four months, the kitten has a full set of small milk teeth in the amount of 1 piece. If all the teeth have already changed their molars, which are larger and stronger, then the pet is at least seven months old.
- Another sign taken into account during external examination - the weight of the animal. The main thing is to remember about the features of the development of individuals of the breed to which the kitten belongs, because the weight of individuals of different breeds of the same age is different and sometimes quite significant. A healthy newborn kitten, which is up to a week old and weighs up to 150 grams. By three weeks, the figure reaches 00-250 grams. Then the weight gain increases significantly and by the time of two months it can reach from 600 to 900 grams.
After three months of age, a weight gain of at least 500 grams is considered normal. This happens until an adult cat achieves up to 4.5 kg, and a cat - up to 4 kg. Then the weight gain stops and you can determine that the cat is already at least one and a half years old.
With external examination, you can quite accurately know the age of a kitten up to three months. Then the error is greater.
Method for determining age by puberty
A kitten, like other animals, develops much faster and according to the degree of its sexual maturity, we can conclude about its current age.
Such stages of formation of sexual readiness are traced.:
- Behavior change under the action of hormones. It usually begins by four months, when sex hormones are actively produced, changing the background in the body and provoking increased activity, frequent meowing at night, a desire to get outside to other cats. The manifestation of such changes in the behavior of the pet allows you to determine the beginning of puberty and, accordingly, the age of at least four months.
- Until six months the kitten continues to actively develop in this regard.. The period is characterized by increased aggressiveness, mating attempts. In the physical plane, it also changes, childish swelling goes away, it is replaced by stoutness, a sharp weight gain. Therefore, if the kitten is too aggressive, actively looking for a pair, you can confidently determine its age at 5-6 months.
- Then, hormones gradually stabilize, and by seven months puberty ends. From this moment there is a high probability of pregnancy in the cat.
Based on this, it becomes clear how to determine the age of a kitten by the degree of puberty, although the method is suitable for a rather short period of time. And if the owner is confident that the stage is completed, then the kitten has already reached at least seven months.
Behavior and its features as a way to determine age
As they grow older, the kitten changes its behavior in accordance with the period of development. Pay attention to such moments.:
- If the kitten lives next to the cat's mother, then up to one and a half months he will be fed on her breast milk. But by seven weeks the cat completely wean him from feeding. And he, in turn, will actively explore the environment, look for new food, because this is one of the main conditions for the full development of the animal.
- At the same time, the kitten with pleasure runs more, plays, and meets people. Confidence in movements, courage in exploring the world allow the owner to determine that the baby is about 5-6 weeks old. By two months he already has a well-developed coordination, great mobility, a strong desire to study everything around him.
- About how much time has passed since the birth of the crumbs can be judged by its reaction to noise and external stimuli. The first three weeks he reacts poorly. If the kitten shows interest, fear or other emotions in response to noise, strokes and the like, then it is about a month. In addition, this is the age when there is interest in all kinds of games.
Using these simple methods, it is quite easy to determine the age of a pet by yourself. If in doubt, you can always consult a veterinarian.
And a little about the secrets.
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Why do you need to know the age of the kitten
It is difficult to imagine a situation where there is some practical sense in clearly establishing the age of a pet. The dosage of food or medicine for cats (as well as for people) is calculated by weight, the date of birth of breeding animals is indicated by the breeder in the accompanying documents (in the pedigree and veterinary passport), and if the kitten was picked up on the street, it doesn’t matter how many weeks or months old are he?
Determining the exact age of stray kittens hardly makes practical sense.
Our first cat got into the house that way. He was brought by my father, warming him from the bitter cold on his chest. The little creature has not yet learned to walk and ridiculously swayed on weak legs. Independently there is an unhappy child, too, did not know how, and we in turn fed him milk powder from a pipette, absolutely not thinking about the age of our new pet. Imperceptibly, an adult burglar grew up from a tiny lump, who was entertaining himself by closing the valve in the bathroom with his paw from the inside, scaring all household members to death (we thought the thief had climbed to us), in short, the question of how many weeks the baby had initially lost its relevance very fast.
There are situations when the absence of elementary ideas about how kittens look at one or another age can bring quite certain inconveniences, but this applies primarily to expensive pedigreed animals.
Somehow, a potential buyer, specifying the conditions for acquiring an Abyssinian boy, asked the author to send him a video in which the kittens could be viewed, and after reviewing the recording, he uncertainly asked if the kids really were only three months old, because, they say, they look like half a year.
Three-month kittens differ from their parents only in size
Experts are well aware that by the age of three months, kittens differ from adult animals only in size, but even this difference can be seen only when there is a “sample” for comparison. The association of felinological clubs of the World Cat Federation (WCF) categorically does not recommend tearing off kittens from their mother until they reach three months of age. Because of this requirement (absolutely justified, by the way), one can often encounter a situation where, seeing not a kitten in front of him, but a small cat, the buyer thinks that an overgrown animal is trying to sell him, although in reality this is not the case.
Let us give one more specific example of the situation when the ability to determine the age of a kitten by external signs will help not to become a victim of fraudsters.
There are clear rules for the transport of animals across the state border. We will not go into details, we note only that the observance of all established standards practically excludes the legal importation of a kitten younger than five months into the country.
But sometimes you can run into intermediaries offering (for a high fee, of course) animal delivery services to any state in Europe, bypassing the required procedures. This leads to an important conclusion: if you are offered to buy a pedigree kitten, which is no more than three months old, and at the same time claim that the animal was brought from abroad, it is either a fraud or smuggling, and it is unsafe for the health of the cat.. It is possible that, despite the mark in the accompanying documents, the baby does not have the necessary rabies vaccination or the vaccination was carried out earlier than this period. It is not known what is worse, especially considering that the truth, most likely, no one will tell you.
A kitten under the age of five months cannot be legally imported into the country.
In a word, if for the owner of the usual yard Murka the ability to determine her age is no more than curiosity, then for those who intend to acquire a pedigree kitten and are going to pay a tidy sum for their future pet, this skill is needed as a very real protection against unscrupulous traders in "living goods".
"Mustaches, paws, tail - these are my documents"
Newborn kittens look like little worms. The length of their calf, covered with a delicate fur (completely, by the way, pronounced color), is not more than 10 cm, they are blind, deaf and helpless. For the first few days, tiny lumps just sleep and eat, sweetly pushing each other with their thin legs. Children of four or five days old are still blind, but they already hear and even react to some stimuli.
Newborn kittens are blind, deaf and helpless
Bring your finger to the face of a kitten who has barely turned a few days, and you will be surprised to see how a pussy tries to hiss indignantly almost as an adult predator.
Other people's children grow up very quickly, but in cats, this process happens simply rapidly. We have already said that the path from a helpless tadpole to a fully formed small predator kitten passes in three months, but still it’s not a magical transformation, but a sequential change. And just by the way the appearance and behavior of an animal is transformed, one can quite clearly determine its age.
Age and size
The weight of a kitten at birth is a relative value and depends on many different factors, but on average we are talking about one hundred grams with a possible error of 10–20% in both directions.
In the following days and weeks, the babies begin to gain weight intensively, from which, it would seem, it follows that by weight you can determine the age of the kitten. There are even specially compiled tables of dependencies between these two parameters, but it is enough to compare the data given in different sources in order to notice how much they diverge. And it is no coincidence, because the current weight of the animal is a very individual indicator. Trying to determine the age of a kitten on the basis of its weight is as ridiculous as making similar conclusions with respect to a human cub.
Cat weight depends on many factors.
It is clear that kittens of miniature kao-mani and heavy maine coon are two big differences: at birth their weight categories are quite comparable, but the growth of large cats is much more intense, so that by the end of the first month the gap becomes obvious. However, the weight of a growing animal is influenced not only by the breed, but also by many other factors, in particular:
- the number of babies in the litter (the more there are, the less milk goes to each and the slower the weight gain occurs),
- mom's diet during pregnancy and lactation,
- the health of the kitten,
- gender (at birth, the weight of boys and girls is no different, but as they grow, cats start to gain weight a little faster than cats).
Some generalized data on how quickly the kitten gains weight, we still give, but they are needed rather not to determine the age of the animal, but to answer the question whether everything is in order. Everything here is just like that of people: a normal weight gain suggests that the animal is healthy and not hungry.
Baby, gaining weight poorly, have to finish feeding
During the first days of life, kittens must gain from 7 to 15 grams of weight each day, and by the end of the second week they usually double their initial weight. Then the weight gain gradually slows down, so that up to half a year the animal gains about 100 g per week.
After six months, the growth of the kitten as a whole is completed, a slight increase in weight in the subsequent period is possible only through the development and strengthening of muscles. The final formation of a cat (including puberty) ends by one and a half or two years.
How can you tell how old your pet is?
Sometimes a fluffy pet in your house appears unexpectedly - you can pick up a stray animal on the street or get it as a gift. In this case, the question of determining age may be relevant, and sometimes problematic. And to know how many months a cat needs is necessary, at least approximately, because its diet and vaccination will depend on it. In this regard, we propose to learn how to determine the age of a kitten and how to determine the age of a cat in our article!
Teeth - one of the main indicators to determine the age of a kitten accurately enough, if you count them. It is worth remembering that the cat's teeth are changing. If you have a crumb in your hands and you don’t find teeth in his mouth, then he probably has no more than two weeks. The approximate age when babies start to get teeth is 2-3 weeks. Chewing organs are cut through in a certain sequence, which is designed to answer the question of how to determine the age of a kitten.
- If the baby has incisors and you see that fangs start to appear - most likely it will take about a month.
- If premolars are also erupting, then the baby is 1.5-2 months old.
- If you count 26 milk teeth in a crumbs in your mouth, then it should be from 3 to 4 months.
- The change of teeth starts from 3-4 months.
- And if your fuzzy has molars - these are the farthest teeth, then he will probably be only about 7 months old.
Very informative and interesting video about how to grow, change and develop kids further!
It’s harder to figure out how old an adult is as sensitive to the chewing organs - here you need to carefully study the state of enamel and the degree of abrasion of the chewing surface. But as a rule, young lions up to 5 years old have lighter enamel, its surface is clean, and there are 30 pieces of chewing organs themselves. Although everything is relatively relative here. After all, a very important role is played by the conditions in which the cat lived, what it ate and what ailments fell to its lot. The presence of tartar, cracks in the enamel tells us that most likely the animal is more than 5-7 years old.
Therefore, if you are interested in the question of how to determine the age of a cat, then only teeth will help you to know it at least approximately. And if an adult cat or a cat fell into your hands, carefully study the jaws of the animal and count the chewing organs, this will help you find out how many years Murzik has.
- There is a noticeable abrasion of the central incisors of the lower jaw - purr about 2 years.
- The middle incisors of the lower jaw began to wear off - the animal is about 3 years old.
- If the same is observed on the upper jaw - your pet is about 4-4.5 years old.
- There are signs of erasing on the canines at the age of about 5-5.5 years.
- If the extreme incisors of both jaws began to wear off, their master is about 6 years old.
- If the shape of the central and middle incisors of the mandible has noticeably changed - almost lost the right angles - the fluff should be a little more than 7 years old.
- If the same is observed at the top - the approximate age of 8-9 years.
- If you miss a few incisors cat about 10-12 years.
In the photo below you can see how approximately the jaws should look as the individual increases in age.
As eyes and ears
This is another method that helps answer the question of how to determine the age of a kitten, but it is not suitable for determining the age of an adult. Mark the age of an adult cat is generally much more difficult. But the ears and eyes of a kitten go through a series of modifications. Everyone knows that babies are born completely helpless, blind and deaf. For about two weeks, nature singled out little Murzik for insight, some babies look at this world for the first time in 7-10 days.
- Therefore, if you have a kitten with barely opened eyes, then at least a week and a half it is.
- If the eyes are open, but still narrowed, then the baby has 2-3 weeks.
- The eyes of a little fluffy change their color as they get older, so if you notice that the eye color of the cat is unstable, then it should be 6-7 weeks.
- The auricles of a newborn are also closed from birth, they begin to open on the 5-8th day of life.
- If the ears of the baby are fully opened, then it should be about 3 weeks.
By weight and body length
Naturally, with the growth and maturation of the mass of kittens will increase and its values can be calculated. Normally, a little fuzzy should dial 10-20 g a day. The following is a table that tells you how much your baby should weigh at different ages, provided that it develops correctly.