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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 29691
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience.
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I have a very young mother cat with 4, 4 week old kittens.

Customer Question

i have a very young mother cat with 4, 4 week old kittens. it appears that the mother has milk in her teats but I don't think that milk is flowing and the kittens are as full feeling when you pick them up. They also seem hungry although some have started eating some kitten food both wet and dry. The last two days the mom has a very dirty face that i have cleaned. Any ideas?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 2 years ago.
Aloha! You're speaking with Dr. Michael Salkin
I'm sorry that your question wasn't answered in a timely manner. Galactosis - accumulation of milk within the mammary gland due to failure of ejection (letdown) - hasn't been described in cats. It's more likely that 4 week old kittens are ready to be fully weaned and prefer not to nurse any longer. If you feel that they're not thriving at this time, it's best to forego milk - natural or replacement - and stimulate interest in kitten food by eyedroppering a gruel of the food into each kitten's mouth. Alternatively, you can allow them to run through wet food placed in a contained space; it's a mess but can work nicely.
I'm not clear what "a very dirty face" implies. Can you upload a photo of her face to our conversation? You can use the paperclip icon in the toolbar above your message box (not if you're using the chrome browser) or you can use an external app such as or I can be more accurate for you if I can see what you're seeing.
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 2 years ago.

I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?

Dr. Michael Salkin