THE BABY BOX:
•The box in which the babies live should have tall sides so that the babies can not accidentally get out and get chilled. We carry cardboard carriers available that are ideal for this purpose. They are portable, closable, and dark inside.
•Place the box on a heating pad so that half of the box is warmed. This will allow the puppies or kittens to move away from the pad when they get to warm.
Ideal Heating Pad Temperatures:
Birth to 5 Days 85-90 Degrees
5-20 Days 80 Degrees
20-34 Days 75 Degrees
• Place a towel in the bottom of the box and cover it with a diaper. The puppies or kittens can be placed directly on the diaper. The elastic bands on the dipper will need to be cut off so that it will lay flat in the bottom of the carrier. You will need to change the diaper several times a day in order to keep the babies clean and dry.
• Kittens and puppies under 4 weeks of age should be feed a Puppy or Kitten Formula ONLY – milk or human baby formula causes diarrhea.
o Kitten Formula = KMR (Kitten Milk Replacment) is available in both powder and liquid forms.
o Puppy Formula = ESBILAC it to is available in both liquid and powder forms.
• The powder formulas should be mixed according to the direction on the can and stored in the freezer after opening. Do not prepare more then a days worth of formula at a time. A blender can be used to prepare the formula, however you should allow time for the bubbles to settle out.
• For very young babies the liquid formula may be diluted with 1 part water : 2 part formula.
• Begin mixing formula with Gerber High Protein Baby Cereal at 3 – 4 weeks of age.
• Slowly begin to substitute water for the puppy formula at 4 weeks of age.
• After 1 week gradually switch the cereal to a high quality puppy or kitten food such as HILL’S SCIENCE DIET GROWTH FORMULAS. (See PREMIUM FOODS for addition information)
• Any time diarrhea should develop, dilute the food 50 % with water and call the clinic for instructions.
• Emergency Milk Replacements (Use this ONLY until you can pick up KMR or ESBILAC formula)
ORPHANED PUPPY FORMULA:
1 Cup Whole milk
2 Egg yolks
1 tablespoon salad oil
1 drop liquid multi vitamin (if available)
ORPHANED KITTEN FORMULA:
1/2 Cup Whole milk
1 Egg yolks
1 drop liquid multi vitamin (if available)
Both formulas can be mixed in a blender
THE BABY BOTTLE:
• Pet nursers are available at our hospital
• A small hole will need to be made in the nipple using a pair of scissors or a hot needle. The hole should allow the formula to drip out slowly when held up side down with very little squeezing. The nipple should not collapse when the puppy or kitten is sucking.
• Warm the bottle in a pan of water to insure even heating of the formula (Microwaves do not heat the formula evenly)
• Food should be heated to ~ 100 degrees (body temperature).
HOW TO CARE FOR THE ORPHANS:
• Babies should be fed every 2-4 hours for the first week, then every 4 hours.
• Feed 2-tablespoons per 4 oz. body weight. (15% of body wt. Divided into 4-6 meals)
• Do not wake the babies at feeding time. Let them sleep. When they wake up hungry, they will let you know.
• During feeding be sure to tip the bottle so that no air is swallowed.
• Play with / rub them after feeding to “burp” them.
• Occasionally small amounts of formula will come out of the nose. The baby is drinking too fast. If excessive amounts of formula appear to be coming out the nose or if you are concerned, call us.
• Discard reconstituted formula after 24 hours.
• Introduce formula changes SLOWLY.
• Begin feeding in a saucer as soon as eyes are open. (Usually about two weeks of age.)
• Dip muzzle and tongue in saucer. Put finger in side of mouth to encourage sucking.
• A crying baby is either a COLD or a HUNGRY baby!
STIMULATING URINATION / DEFECATION
Infant animals are unable to take care of these matters alone and must be given help. Normally their mother’s tongue does the job as she washes them. Use a Q-tip, tissue, or your finger to gently rub the baby’s genital area. Have a tissue ready to catch the urine.
Rubbing the anal area as well may also be necessary if the babies do not seem to be defecating as much as expected. Watch for diarrhea. Normal infant stool is normally very loose but should not be watery
• Keep area clean! This is MOST IMPORTANT for good health!
• Using a shampoo which is labeled for very young animals and warm water, bathe the babies a couple of times daily. Urine will burn their tender skin and caked feces can lead to infection so keeping the babies clean is very important.
• Take care not to submerge the infant in water. Be careful that it cannot drown or choke on the water and be sure the water temperature is acceptable.
• Gently blow dry the babies when the bath is over. Do not allow the babies to get cold.
• Colostrum is the first milk produced by the mother shortly after giving birth. It is rich in antibodies which will protect the babies for the first several months of life. Without colostrum (if their mother did not nurse the babies during the first 2 days of life) the babies are virtually without an immune system. Great care should be taken in cleanliness, and the babies should be vaccinated at 2 weeks of age. They may require a plasma transfusion to make up for the colostrum. There is no substitute for a real mother.
• DO NOT DISTURB except for feeding and cleaning!
• TWITCHING is NORMAL during sleeps these exercises the muscles to aid growth.
• Bring pups/kittens to clinic at four weeks of age for examination and deworming.