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I have an 11 week old kitten that we have raised since birth. During the weaning process all of the other kittens would run when we put out food for them. Not Sonja. She was the runt of the litter and was significantly smaller than the other three. We decided to keep Sonja becasue of the fact that she would never eat. She started at one time eating kitten dry food but never any wet food. I figured that that was just fine. However, that did not last very long. She now does not chose to eat that either.

I have tried everything - moistening it, getting a special nutrition gravy for cats and kittens to pour over it - and just plain dry. I also offer her Cat Milk which she does devour. I can't imagine though that this will substain her as she continues to grow.

I continue to (multiple times daily) offer her the food and she continues to not eat it. I pick her up and place her in front of it each time. She buries it and walks away each time.
Funny thing is - she likes table food. I know that it is probably not okay for her to grow-up eating this but what should I do? Am I going to have to cook special meals just for her? I am willing but again, I wonder, is this okay for her and if so - any suggestions as to what "people" food would be better for her?
 

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Well, I don't have a cat yet, but if the less discriminating species that is the dog can sniff and turn away from food they don't like, than finicky felines can, too! Since she is drinking milk and and doesn't hesitate to try out "people food" the problem just might be the food you're trying to feed her isn't tasty or nice smelling enough. Try buying small packages of other cat food that looks promising, and hopefully, she'll take to one. There are so many different brands out there that it can be hard to find a good one, but try going for something more on the upscale side. If you can get something like Felidae, I bought the canine counterpart and it seems that the natural food seems a lot more appealing to pets than the usual grocery-store stuff.

Or if experimentation and lots of opened bags of useless cat food doesn't appeal to you, I think that if you open a can of plain old sardines or and mash some into her food, pouring some of the oil into it, she might take to it. Or if she likes those table scraps that much, try putting in some normal gravy into her food, and add less and less as time goes on so that she gets used to the idea of eating that food. I've never had to resort to that approach much with any pet myself, but hey, maybe it will work. Hopefully she isn't so incredibly discriminating that you'll have to make special home cooked meals constantly.

Good luck!
 

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Is the kitten extremely thin? If so, you'll want to call the vet. She might have been conceived days after the others, which would account for her small size. I think Tae has given you some good ideas.

I have a cat who just doesn't care if he eats or not, and refused sardines. In fact neither cat likes sardines. I free feed, but I give Blueberry canned chicken at least twice a day, to make sure he eats. Nutracal is very helpful in giving a cat more nutrients and calories also.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the ideas and keep them coming if possible. I really like the idea of the canned chicken. I think that might work. Can she eat that day in and day out if she likes it? What is Nutracal?? Wonder where to find it. Thanks for the other tips as well. I will try the sardine trick but have already tried putting in the "table"
food and mixing it in and leaving it on top etc. and she is no fool. she just doesn't eat anything that resembles cat food. I have tried so many different kinds. I will try more until something sticks.
She is not very thin but was definately a lot smaller than the others. One was just huge compared to her. We called him Mack - like a mack truck - because of his size. She was only 1/2 his size and as he got larger and larger, she seemed to get smaller and smaller but I don't think thinner. Ocassionally the mother cat, which we have, will let her nurse still for a few seconds at a time. Is this okay still even though she is nearing 12 weeks?
 

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I would let her nurse until the mother cat stops her. She needs nourishment, and mother's milk is perfect! The chicken I give Bluseberry is sliced canned cat food-any good brand. Your kitten is very young. Baby her a bit, and don't worry about doing it. Nutracal is a gel that you can buy at any pet store. It has extra nutrients and calories in a malt flavored base-which cats seem to enjoy. Please keep us updated!

Oh, after a while, start adding a bit of dry food to the canned. You can moisten it a bit at first, if you want. Then gradually add more dry kitten food and less canned until the majority is dry, and eventually offer the canned once a day and free food the dry. Let her develop a taste for the dry since she seems to think it's so terrible. Maybe it's like green olives, an acquired taste. :wink:
 

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Discussion Starter #6
So I took the advice about the sardines mixed into the food. Sonja ate them and some of the cat food. Picky at first and didn't eat much but the good thing is she ate some. She might have managed to pick out just the sardines, smart little girl. But eating anything with cat food mixed in is a big step.
Thanks.
 

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food

We got our cat a year ago. He is pretty picky about what he eats, he only likes seafood in the middle (we are trying new more nutriental food, I think he knows it is diet food) and he will only eat Fancy Fiest. The idea with mixing the wet cat food with dry cat food seems to work really well...we mix it up to where all the dry pieces afix to the wet cat food then he is forced to eat the dry food to. If you cat likes table food, try the BARF diet. It worked really well on out German Shepard. You should be able to find some good information on line about it. Basically what it is is feeding them a mixature of uncooked meat and bone (like chicken wings, fish, etc.) I know Gibson loved to climb up to the prepared dog food and like the mackeral. It seems to break apart very easily so it is easy to their little teeth to chew. But these are just a couple of suggestions.
 

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So the sardines worked like once maybe, now she turns her nose up at them. Dry, wet, dry moistened whatever way, nothing seems to tickle her fancy. Today, when I was making my sons lunch for school she was obviously looking for something to eat - even though everything she would need or want was recently served to her. She though decided that the ham for the sandwich would be bette. I chopped some up extra fine, instead of watching her starve, she ate it all. Then she wanted more. I had out bologna, probably not good for her, and did the same to it, she turned her nose up at that too. Still seems to occassionally nurse. Tries to all the time but mother only lets er for seconds then mother is up and off. Other times 2x daily i think, she lets her nurse longer, at least today. I will look up this BARF diet. Sounds tasty??!!
 

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Before you resort to that, try ground beef with the fat drained off or liver chopped fine or chicken, as I mentioned previously. Put a bit of salt as it cooks, not much. The BARF diet is somewhat controversial. Many people like it for their cats, but I would not use it for a kitten. I worry about salmonella, etc., from raw meat.
 

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Be careful. It sounds like you're training her to expect the junk food (lunch meat, etc.). Personally I would go with a little tough love, offering only cat food for a few days. Eventually she's going to get hungry and she's not going to let herself starve. Just keep a close eye on her.
 

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Definately she is not coming to expect "junk food" like bologna, ham etc..
I always put down the cat food. Even though she has never eaten it. Only times I have given her something else is maybe twice before posting here, then the couple of times with sardines, the ham/bologna incident, and this morning for the first time in a few days I gave her something I thought for sure she would eat - tuna, and she did. Supposedly she should have been eating solid food for the past 6 weeks maybe? This means that in all this time she has probably only eaten a solid meal maybe ten times. As mentioned before - so far I have tried almost everything advised here and offer her the wet food, dry, and moist dry. Tried different brands, you name it I have tried it. As long as Nellie, the mother kittie, feeds her 2x a day I am all set, she will get nourishment. Soon though I will have to figure something out. Besides having an over-worked owner - is there anyuthing bad about a feline eating table food cooked just for them?
 

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I would take her to the vet and make sure there's not something like a sinus infection or something that is interfering with her ability to taste/and or smell. If she gets a clean bill of health, I would take Veda's suggestion and institute some tough love.
 
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