We remain open to provide care for your pets. We are following the direction of government and regulatory authorities and have implemented hospital and visit protocols to keep both you and our team safe. For regular updates on our hours and visit protocols, please follow our social media platforms.

403.948.2733

Feeding Kittens

Congratulations on your new bundle of fluff. Nothing is more exciting than bringing a new kitten into your household, but this can also be a nerve-racking time. Do you have enough toys and the right toys? What kind of scratching post will she like best? Should I get a bed for her? Do I have an appropriate litter box? Do I have the best diet for him or her?

Feeding a kitten isn’t as simple as just grabbing a bag from the grocery store. Growing kittens have different nutritional needs then their older counterparts, there is no one size fits all approach to feeding. Feeding a diet specifically for growth is essential for optimal health. Body systems such as the skeletal, neurological, digestive and immune systems are still developing.

It is important to start your kitten off on the right paw. Kitten diets are designed to take into account the explosive growth, which can double or even triple in the first year. The need for fat, calories, protein and some vitamins and minerals are higher than that of an adult. Growth diets are designed to meets these unique needs, with ingredients such as a high quality, highly digestible proteins, precisely balanced calcium and phosphorus ratios. Kitten diets also contain blends of antioxidants to support immune health and are supplemented with omega fatty acids, such as DHA, to support normal brain development.

For these reasons, it is recommended to feed your kitten a kitten diet up until the age of 1. At that time, s/he can slowly be transitioned to an adult diet.

It is also an excellent start to experiment with dry and canned diets. There are certain medical conditions later in life that may require a canned diet, and familiarizing your kitten to different or a variety of textures will make the transition easier later in life.

Young cats require frequent feedings. Feeding your kitten 3-4 meals per day until the age of 6 months, at that time the meals can be dropped to 2 per day. Free feeding is never a good idea as this can lead to unhealthy eating habits later down the road into adulthood.

Although food plays a large part in setting up your kitten for a healthy lifetime, her medical care by a veterinarian should also be included. Your veterinarian is your best source for questions in regards to diets, feeding guidelines and general health issues. Should you have questions, please contact your veterinarian for appropriate advice.

Written by: Claire Forbes, RVT

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COVID-19: Additional measures we are taking

Dear Clients,

Due to the close contact that our work requires, we have taken additional measures to protect you and our team while providing care for your furry family members.

1. We are currently operating a "closed door" policy to protect our clients and staff. This means that clients will not be allowed to enter the building. When you arrive in our parking lot, please remain in your vehicle and call us at 403-948-2733. Our staff will come to you to collect your animal for their appointment. If you do not have a phone, or if your animal is experiencing an emergency, please knock on the door to alert our staff.

2. We are still OPEN with the following hours: Monday to Friday: 9:30 am - 4:00 pm and Saturday: 9:00 am - 3:00 pm.

3. At this time, appointments will only be booked when medically necessary. Any non-urgent appointment requests will be temporarily postponed. If you have an emergency that requires immediate attention, please proceed directly to McKnight 24 Hour Veterinary Hospital at 5010 – 4th Street NE, Calgary, AB and call 403-457-0911 to alert them of your arrival.

4. If you are ordering food or medications, please allow 2-4 business days as our suppliers are dealing with increased demand and are trying to fill orders as quickly as possible. We will advise you as soon as your order arrives. Please call us when you arrive to pick up your order, but do not enter the hospital. Our staff will bring your order to your car. You can also use our online store and have your food delivered directly to your home. To sign up for the Online Store, please visit our website.

5. For the time being, credit cards are the preferred payment method. Debit cannot be accepted over the phone, but is available at time of pick up if ABSOLUTELY necessary. We will not be able to accept cash.

Following the recommendations of our government and medical experts, we are doing our best to practice social distancing within the constraints of our jobs. We have taken these measures to avoid both contracting and facilitating the spread of this virus.

Thank you for helping us be diligent for everyone's safety. As we have heard from all levels of government, the situation is fluid, and any updates will be provided as changes occur.

- Your dedicated team at Airdrie Animal Health Centre