Before anything, the most important bit of information you must know is that kittens need enough time to be with their mothers before they can be ready to be separated forever. Kittens who are separated from mom too early could have nutritional deficiencies, and potentially form behavioral, mental, and emotional issues.
In the first 7 weeks of a kitten’s life, they’re totally dependent on mom. They see mom as not only a source of food, but also of comfort and learning. Kittens who are separated from mom at this very early stage can lead them to having difficulty learning and have severe aggression toward people or other animals.
While it is not uncommon for kittens to be separated from mom on their 7th week, if they get separated this early, they may start inappropriately suckling when they get older. They’ll start ‘nursing’ on pillows and blankets as a way to self-soothe themselves when they get older.
On this stage of their lives, if they’re with their mama cat, they’ll start developing adult sleeping patterns and become better at socializing.
Separate kitten after week 12
The best time to separate a kitten from their moms is at their 12th week. By this time, they’re fully ready to be independent from mom. They will have been able to learn social skills and physical coordination to live their best lives in their new forever homes.
When you’re welcoming a new kitten in your home, get yourself ready. Kittens are known for being little furry balls of pure energy. They need a LOT of mental and physical stimulation to stay happy. If you’re adopting one kitten only, expect them to cry for mom for a while. They may be a little lonely and are looking for another kitten or mom to play with them. This is why, if you can, please adopt a companion for your kitten – preferably a litter mate.
On their first time in your house, kittens will call out for their moms when they’re feeling lost or confused. Small kittens may be overwhelmed by being in such a big space. It is recommended that in the first week of your kitten’s stay at your home, keep them in a small room so they have a chance to get comfortable and eventually be ready to take on the rest of the house.
For kittens, it is not uncommon for them to meow all the time. Kittens vocalize as a way to get your attention. When they’re desperate, they’ll go from meowing, to crying, to yowling. Check whether there’s something wrong with your cat – if they’re ill or in pain. If they are, consult your vet. If not, play with them as needed. Meeting your kittens’ needs is the key to them being quiet.
If your kittens just don’t seem to learn the importance of being silent sometimes, it’s up to you to teach them. Do not ever yell at them, as this does not really work on cats. If you scold your cats, the only thing you’re doing is you’re frightening them – which is not what you want to do. Rather, you must outlast them. If you’re sure that nothing is wrong with them, DO NOT RESPOND to their noise. This bit is very challenging, but this is the best way to teach them that meowing at you for no reason is going to get them nowhere.
When should I worry about my cat/kitten meowing?
In general, cats meowing is not something to worry about. If your cat has always been talkative, that’s probably just them being themselves. However, if you’re sensing changes in how often, how intense, or even what type of meowing your cats do, it may be high time to consult a vet.
If your cat start meowing more often, it could be a sign that something may be causing them discomfort either mentally or physically. If they’re making deep, guttural voices to meow, or are downright howling, they could be in very intense pain. In these cases, please see your vet immediately.
Is it true that cats don’t meow at other cats?
Kittens meow at their mom to signal to their moms to their moms that they’re uncomfortable or are hungry. But the thing is, when they get older, they’ll actually grow out of this behavior. Cats will eventually just stop meowing at other cats. The next time they’ll make noises at other cats is when they’re yowling when they’re trying to find a mate, or when they hiss and growl at each other when they’re angry.
Conversely, cats won’t stop meowing at people, either as a greeting, when they’re trying to get your attention, to ask you to do something (like open the door) or give them food.
Do kittens remember their moms and vice versa?
While mama cats are very commonly attentive moms and kittens are very dependent on their moms, once they are separated, sooner or later, they will actually forget each other, as a way to say it simply. Naturally, cats are pretty independent.
When mama cat and offspring are kept together, they will keep their close bond (as it is advantageous to them) and a sense of hierarchy (with the mama cat often times keeping the dominant role), but it is not the same as how humans would see their moms.
It is normal for kittens to be noisy and cry out to their moms after they have been adopted and sent to their forever homes. If they were given enough time to be with their mom before being separated, and with guidance from their new human parents, eventually kittens will stop crying and be more independent.