When can a kitten eat cat food?

In this brief discussion, we’ll answer the question “when can a kitten eat cat food?” We will also discuss when a kitten can switch to adult cat food and how to transition from kitten food to adult cat food.

When can a kitten eat cat food?

While it’s recommended that kittens wait until they’re completely grown before consuming adult cat food, they can start eating dry kibble and wet kitten food much earlier.

Kittens can start eating moistened dry kibble or wet food at three to four weeks. Kittens can eat dry or wet kitten food between the ages of six and eight weeks once they are fully weaned from their mother’s milk.

How often should I feed my kitten?

If you are not free-feeding, younger kittens (6–16 weeks) require several meals every day.

We want to maintain their bodies’ energy levels as they grow and expend calories. You need to feed every 6 to 8 hours.

Your kitten’s total daily caloric requirements will be determined by your veterinarian, and you can split those amounts across the number of meals you serve your kitten each day. 

By the time kittens are 4-5 months old, they can usually be switched to two meals per day, still receiving all of their daily caloric needs in larger, less frequent meals.

When can a kitten switch to adult cat food?

Cats are typically regarded as kittens until they are about 12 months old. However, large breeds like the Maine Coon might take up to two years to mature.

Kittens require a comprehensive and well-balanced kitten diet throughout this time of growth and development. It’s time to switch to adult cat food once they’ve reached adulthood (based on their breed).

It is important to choose the right time to transition from kitten food to adult cat food because young kittens require more energy and nutrient-dense meals compared to adult cats.

Why is it important to switch from kitten food to adult food?

Kittens grow and mature quickly, are quite playful, and have a lot of energy. To support the active development and growth of kittens, kitten food contains extra calories, protein, and fat.

Additionally, it is packed with DHA to assist in the growth of their brains and vision, as well as vitamins and minerals required for their developing immune systems.

Cats don’t require the same amounts of those nutrients until they reach adulthood. Additionally, cats are frequently less active, therefore consuming high-calorie kitten food could cause weight gain, which can further create several health issues in cats.

How to switch from kitten food to cat food?

It’s crucial to gradually transition from kitten to adult cat food when they’re ready because young cats have different nutritional needs than adult cats. In order to develop and grow healthily, kittens need various types of food at different times of their lives, just like human newborns do.

Pets, unlike their human parents, consume the same diet every day and have the microorganisms necessary to digest it. The microorganisms do not have time to adapt and digest the new food when the diet is abruptly changed. 

This may cause severe stomach issues, such as vomiting and diarrhoea. Spread out the transition process over a 7–10 day period to prevent this, gradually blending more of the new diet with the old. 

It’s time to switch to adult cat food around your kitten’s first birthday (or between 18 months and 2 years for large breeds). To help prevent any stomach distress, we advise a 7–10 day transition to adult meals.

This is how:

  • Day 1-2: Add 1/4 of the new adult cat food and provide 3/4 of the usual amount of kitten food.
  • Serve half kitten food and half adult cat food on days three and four.
  • Serve 1/4 kitten food and 3/4 adult cat food on days 5-7.
  • Serve only the new adult cat food on days 8–10.

Slow the transition and give your cat more time before increasing the amount of adult food if she refuses to consume the new food. To learn more about this transition, speak with your veterinarian.

How can you ensure a proper transition from kitten to cat food?

To ensure a proper transition from kitten to cat food, here are some tips to help you:

  • It can be more difficult to transition if you change your kitten’s food too rapidly. Ensure seclusion and a peaceful dining space away from the commotion and other cats.
  • Feed your cat by hand, at least at first. The person giving the cat food ought to get along well with the animal.
  • Along with dry cat food, provide canned or moist food.
  • For the cat food to remain fresh and of high quality, make sure you store everything properly.


We answered the question, “When can a kitten eat cat food?” We will also discuss when a kitten can switch to adult cat food and how to transition from kitten food to adult cat food.