How to wean kittens onto big cat food (safely & slowly)
Weaning should be a gradual process starting from when a kitten is 3-4 weeks. During this time, kittens should still be supplementary bottle fed until they are fully weaned at approximately 6 weeks old. Some kittens still require bottle feeding past this age if they are sick, underweight or are just slow to transition onto solids. Every kitten is different, so the weaning process should be tailored for them.
Starting off using a high quality kitten wet food helps kittens transition onto solids as it's easy for them eat, however they may need a helping hand in starting the process. You may need to blend some wet food in with their milk formula to help get them get used to the taste, and for their stomachs to adjust to the new diet. Once they have adjusted to the taste, you can try put a small amount of wet food in their mouth, allowing them to get used to the stronger taste and it encourages them to start eating by themselves.
Weaning can also be quite messy! Make sure to keep kittens clean through this process by using gentle, unscented baby wipes to help clean the food from their faces and feet, or give them a gentle bath with something like Aloveen (a gentle oatmeal shampoo). Keeping kittens clean helps keep them comfortable, happy and healthy!
When weaning kittens, it's important not to rush the process. Many people like to wean kittens as soon as possible, however this is not in the best interest for the kitten. A slow introduction and supplementary bottle feeds ensures the kitten is receiving their required daily dietary intake.