When do kittens first eat solid food?

Young kittens of domestic cats become capable of taking adult food at about 30 to 32 days after birth. Their mother may continue suckling but she becomes gradually less amenable which usually leads to a completely weaned young cat at about the age of 2-months-of-age (wild cats take longer and are weaned at about 4 months after birth).

Kitten learning to hunt

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At about seven weeks after birth mothers who have access to genuine hunting bring back dead prey to the nest area where she eats it watched by her kittens – rather than eating it where it was killed. The next phase of teaching kittens to hunt occurs when she brings back dead prey and plays with it before feeding. Her kittens learn how to beat prey with their claws and how to grab it in their jaws.

Next she allows the kittens to eat prey. When the kittens are a little older (and safe from being harmed by live prey) she will bring back live prey and kill it in front of her kittens. As they learn they will eventually accompany her on hunting missions and hunt and kill prey themselves.

(At about 3-months-of-age the mother refuses access to her nipples. This is when kittens HAVE too eat solid cat food and liquids).


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