Dallas Animal Services

DFW Kitten Network

The DFW Kitten Network is a partnership between local animal shelters and rescue groups designed to work together to save the lives of area kittens. Each Spring, Texas shelters and rescues begin overflowing with homeless kittens in need of care and adoptive homes; our goal is to optimize our lifesaving efforts by working hand in hand with each other and the community.

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​DFW Kitten Network

Items Needed by DFW Kitten Network:

  • Powdered Kitten Milk Replacer
  • Kitten Bottles
  • Heating pads without "auto off" switches
  • Cans of wet kitten food
  • Kitten feeding syringes
  • Plastic pet carriers
  • Towels
  • Kitten toys

Finding "Orphaned" Kittens

Not all kittens need help. The best place for kittens is with their mother, so before you scoop up kittens you find outdoors it is important to first determine if they're truly orphans or if mom is hiding or hunting nearby.


Helping Kittens That Have Been Orphaned

Unfortunately, there are times when kittens become permanently separated from their mothers. In this case, it is important to get them appropriate care immediately.

You'd make a great foster parent! If you're willing to care for the kittens until they're two-months-old (or weigh 2lbs) and can be fixed for adoption, the SPCA of Texas is ready to provide you with all the supplies you need to be successful! Visit the SPCA's website or one of their shelters for more information and to pick up your free kitten foster kit!

If you're unable to care for the kittens, we're still here to help. If you found the kittens within the City of Dallas, bring them to Dallas Animal Services and we will work to find them a foster within our program or with one of our rescue partners.

Didn't find them in the City of Dallas? Reach out to one of the groups in the right-hand sidebar for help!

Resources to Help You Care for Orphaned Kittens

Fostering orphaned kittens is fun, adorable, and rewarding! But, like all babies, kittens are fragile and need specialized care. That's why we have gathered a variety of resources to help ensure you have access to all of the information and best practices you need to successfully raise your kittens!

Determining Your Kitten's Age


For more detailed information, visit Alley Cat Allies' website.

How Kittens Grow


Bottle Feeding Kittens

Bottles are often too big for newborns, so start with syringe feeding. Make sure they're always laying flat on their bellies during meals to avoid aspiration, which can be deadly. 

Once they're ready for a bottle, transitioning is easy! Make sure they're always laying flat on their bellies during meals to avoid aspiration, which can be deadly.

Helping Bottle Babies Go Potty
They've eaten successfully -- congratulations! But remember, newborn kittens can't go potty on their own; their mother stimulates urination and defecation through parental tongue baths. Kittens being raised by humans still need to go potty, so it's critical that you stimulate urination and defecation by wiping their genitals and anus areas with warm water on a cotton ball or soft cloth after every meal. This is one of the most important and most overlooked steps in kitten rearing.


Weaning Kittens
At three weeks of age, it's time to begin the weaning process. Congratulations -- you now have "gruel babies"! Gruel babies are more independent, more active, and naturally, a little messier -- but they're also absolutely adorable!


Litter Training Kittens
At three weeks, it's also time to start introducing your kitten to the litter box. Most kittens take to the litter box instinctively, however, some need a little more TLC to learn the ins and outs of the proper potty protocol.

Determining the Sex of Your Kitten
At around three weeks you should be able to determine whether your kitten(s) is a boy or a girl.

Kitten Vaccinations

The organization you're fostering for will take care of medical care for you, all you need to do is bring them in for their appointments with the shelter's veterinarian or the rescue's selected vet office.  Still, it is helpful to understand what your kittens are being vaccinated against to help safeguard their health.

Killing Fleas on Kittens

Baby kittens are too young for flea medications, but that doesn't mean you have to live with fleas!   


 Socializing Feral Kittens
Feral kittens may have never interacted with humans, so they're naturally defensive. With patience and cautious persistence, you'll be able to make them lap kittens in no time!