How to get kitten to drink water?

by Ryanna
(West Virginia)

Recently my mom took in her friend's kitten, not even sure how old. Her friend went to the hospital and we are keeping the kitten as we're sure he's going to pass. He doesn't eat hard food, refuses to even, but goes nuts over soft food which he eats every day. I even put a bit of water in it to make it more watery.

The problem is, he doesn't know how to drink water. He tries but he can't. We have water in several bowls. He goes to them, scratches at the full bowl sticks his head down, touches the water, and immediately backs away.

I've just learned he came from a litter of feral kittens (my mom's friend had a friend who gave him the kitten). I don't think the guy even checked if they were fully weaned or how old they were and just gave them away.

He tries nursing on stuffed animals as if trying to get milk from it. He uses the bathroom fine though. Is this just something we have to wait on or is there a way to teach him to drink water?

I've raised kittens before and never had this problem so I'm just a bit confused.

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Jul 07, 2021
A bottle?
by: Jamie Liu

If he's eating solid food, I would think he should be at the point where he can drink. Maybe try a bottle or an eyedropper? To get more fluids in him, you could try some tuna juice in his dish. I've never experienced this before. I wish I could be of more help.

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