So, you’ve finally got your new kitten, they’re full of beans and wreaking havoc in the home, but they seem to have developed some loose stool and are vomiting now and then.
Every kitten needs a health check from a vet and should start their initial vaccines at 9 weeks of age.
They need regular anti-parasite treatment, and their worming regime should begin from two weeks of age.
Once these basic things have been taken care of, it’s time to focus on diet.
Feeding your new arrival the best kitten food for sensitive stomach can minimise the chances of them developing an upset stomach and can help them to cope with one they may already have.
As well as focusing on diet, care should be taken to keep stress levels to a minimum.
Being separated from their mother and siblings can be a challenging time for a young kitten, and when you add the stress of that on to the anxiety associated with moving home and meeting a whole new family, it’s little wonder that some can start to feel under the weather.
Remember that once a kitten has been weaned, they no longer have any requirement for dairy so should not be given milk (even kitten milk).
Continuing to provide your kitten with milk after weaning can lead to dietary upset.
For those in the know, there is no doubt that this is the best cat food for kittens with sensitive stomachs.
Most breeders and veterinarians will reach straight for the I/D if there is any indication that a kitten will need it.
Not only is I/D highly palatable, the wet, flaky chunks of meat are irresistible to any kitten; an important feature if being fed to an unwell patient who may not have a big appetite.
The strong meaty aroma is also a benefit, meaning kittens with blocked or crusty noses should still be able to smell the food, increasing the chance that they will eat it voluntarily.
This is a highly digestible kitten food that is also a complete food for adult cats, so is the ideal choice if feeding kittens alongside their mother cat, or in a multi-cat household.
Many mature cats will react poorly if fed a kitten food as it can be too rich, so having a food down that is suitable for all of the felines in the household is a real win.
As well as being suitable for feeding to unwell patients, this food is also an ideal meal when pets are recovering from surgeries.
The protein and fat within the food is easily absorbed, ensuring your kitten has the building blocks available to repair tissue and grow.
There are several fibre sources within, adding bulk to the stool and preventing excess fluid loss in the form of diarrhea.
The high level of anti-oxidants will neutralise free radicals and can lower risk of infection.
This is especially important in kittens that have not yet finished their vaccine course and whose maternal antibodies are decreasing rapidly.
If desired, this food can be mixed with hard I/D biscuits and there is a handy feeding chart online which goes through the correct amounts needed for either wet, dry or mixed feeding in both kittens and adult cats.
Another hard-hitter in the world of kitten food is Kitten Instinctive from the popular brand Royal Canin.
This is a complete wet food that is known internationally as one of the best kitten food for sensitive stomach.
Ideally suited to those kittens between the ages of 4 and 12 months, this food is easy to eat as it has been formulated into tender chunks coated in a tempting jelly.
Unlike the I/D food, this diet should not be fed to those felines over the age of one year.
There are 12 x 85g pouches, which is typically the ideal amount of meals to get you through a stomach upset.
However, this food is absolutely appropriate to feed during your kitten’s second life stage, and all the way up until their 1st Birthday.
Many owners will opt to mix this wet food with some dry Royal Canin kibble, and there is a handy feeding guide online to instruct owners on the necessary amount to provide.
Feeding the wet food alone is generally well tolerated and can be a good way of maintaining hydration and keeping fluid intake high during a bout of runny stool.
This food should always be given alongside a fresh water source, as though the moisture content is high, kittens still need to drink water each day.
This is neither a grain-free nor a hypoallergenic food and does contain ingredients such as cereals and meats.
Despite this, Kitten Instinctive is still a great choice for kittens with sensitive stomachs as the vast majority of kittens will not have a grain intolerance and will be able to digest the food appropriately.
For the very small proportion of kittens with food intolerances, they will require an alternative diet.
Instinct Original Grain Free Sensitive Kitten Food
Made in the USA with American ingredients, Instinct foods are internationally renowned and have a fantastic reputation for being a reliable source of pet food.
Their tins of chicken pâté kitten food are irresistible to inquisitive little ones who love the meaty taste and appreciate chicken being the number one ingredient.
As well as chicken, this food contains a significant amount of salmon, a superb source of DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), an omega 3 fatty acid that is vital for kitten eye and brain development.
As well as no grain, this food is also free from other potential gastrointestinal irritants, including soy and potato.
This is the ideal food option for any kittens with diagnosed food allergies or intolerances.
While this food may be free from a wide range of ingredients, it certainly doesn’t skimp on the healthy fruits and veggies.
Crammed full of delicious ingredients such as artichokes, tomato, cabbage and cranberries, there are plenty of vitamins, minerals and anti-oxidants to keep your little critter in tip top shape from nose to toes.
With 12 % protein, Instinct Original contains all of the essential amino acids needed for your kitten’s healthy development and ensures normal growth and repair during the first months of life.
Developed into a semi-moist loaf format, this pâté is easy to eat for even the smallest of mouths.
This food is easy to mix with dry kibble if desired and should always be fed alongside a source of water.
If switching foods to Instinct Original, this is a process that should be done over several days to avoid stomach upset.
For most kittens, a food change will take 5 to 7 days.
Initially, a small amount of the new food (say, 10% of the overall portion) is mixed with the old food (90% of the portion).
If this is tolerated, a slightly larger amount is mixed in the next day.
This process continues until by the end of the week the kitten is only eating the new food.
Our second offering from Hill’s, this is the only dry kitten food on our list but has rightfully earned its place.
While it can sometimes be a little tricky to coerce unwell kittens to eat hard biscuits, it can sometimes be well worth it.
If concerned about their hydration status, this food can always be mixed with water to increase your kitty’s moisture intake.
Similarly, this food can be mixed with a sensitive wet food, such as Hill’s I/D.
This food is specifically designed for indoor kitties and will not contain enough calories for those that exercise outdoors and have very high activity levels.
Feeding an indoor cat a specifically indoor food can help to prevent unnecessary obesity as they grow.
The high-quality ingredients contained, as well as the prebiotics and the ample fibre content, ensure that this is a good dietary option for those with sensitive stomachs.
There are plenty of antioxidants, as well as a high level of Vitamin E and Vitamin C, to ensure the kitten’s immune system is fully supported.
As an added benefit, this food is scientifically proven to prevent hairballs; a real bonus for those cats who over groom or have particularly long fur.
Conveniently, this food is suitable for adult cats as well, so can be a great option for a multi-cat household where the pets like to share.
We love feeding our cats Hill’s food, not only because of their 100% money back guarantee, but also because they are a charitable company that have founded the ‘Hill’s Food, Shelter and Love Programme’ that feeds over 100,000 homeless pets every single day.
Now that’s something to smile about!
Last, but by no means least, on our list is Wellness’s smooth chicken loaf that is another grain free option.
This ‘complete health’ pâté provides all of the carbohydrates, proteins and fats needed for a healthy kitten to grow and thrive.
As well as being grain-free, this food contains no artificial flavours, colours or preservatives and so is the ideal choice for those little guys that develop gastrointestinal upset seemingly at the flick of a switch.
Feeding your kitty a highly digestible, limited ingredient diet can go a long way towards maintaining good gut health.
The soft pâté is the perfect texture for small kittens who may sometimes find larger chunks of meat harder to ingest and chew.
It can be mixed with hard biscuits easily if required (though is a complete food if fed alone).
While chicken is the very first ingredient, there are plenty of other culinary delights contained for your cat’s enjoyment.
With flaxseed for Omega 3s, carrots for fibre and antioxidants and cranberries to promote urinary health, this tasty diet option may prove hard to resist.
Wellness Kitten can be fed from weaning until one year of age, at which time your kitten should be moved on to an adult food.
Once old enough, the Wellness brand has some truly delicious adult cat food flavours available, including chicken and lobster and chicken with herring.
The 3oz cans contain 97 calories and are easy to store, with a pull-tab for hassle-free opening.
Whether you opt to feed your furry monster dry or wet food, there are some great options listed above that should keep them fit and healthy and their litter tray free from stinky messes!
Feeding your new pet the best cat food for kittens with sensitive stomachs should not only prevent dietary upsets but should also protect against any gastrointestinal issues they may already be experiencing.
Some of the foods listed are grain-free, making them the obvious choice for kittens with food allergies or sensitivities.
As most kittens will not have food intolerances however, most kitties will do well on any of the foods listed.
Opting for a premium kitten food is vital for your pet’s overall health and wellbeing.
Some kitten foods on the market will contain low quality ingredients that can wreak havoc on the digestive tract.
Though other things can commonly cause stomach upsets in young cats, such as stress, parasites and infections, we should always consider diet.
A kitty’s food source is such a simple thing to change and can result in drastic improvements within short time frames.
Depending on their age, most weaned, young kittens will typically need to be fed around four times a day; making a meal time a main event in the life of a young cat; so why not make it a real pleasure?!